Last year, the Boston-based Push Kings released their critically-acclaimed debut album filled with straight-ahead guitar pop. Nothing in that release prepared me for the surprising and welcome turn of Far Places. The new album is comprised of soulful pop that expands upon the group’s previous Beatles influence to include northern soul, Queen, and Squeeze.
Far Places is consistently superb throughout—virtually any of these songs is strong enough to be a single. “Sunday on the Westside” is the standout track and easily among the best pop songs of the year. The verse starts with a sweet Boy George-style vocal before bursting into an infectious sing-along chorus that recalls the very best of Squeeze. “We Don’t Have to Say Goodbye Forever” is another ingenious pop gem that I can almost imagine Freddie Mercury having sung.