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Geoff Palmer - Charts & Graphs (Rum Bar/Stardumb)

11 August 2021

Since his compadre Brad Marino released another solo album this year, naturally fellow Connection singer/songwriter/guitarist Geoff Palmer follows suit. (The pair each released debut solo albums hot on each other’s heels in 2019.) Charts & Graphs is clearly the second chapter in the book Palmer started with Pulling Out All the Stops, with a similar bent toward sixties-derived guitar pop songs injected with a healthy dose of punk rock power. “Many More Drugs” and “A Hard Day’s Life” kick butt while still remaining singalongs, while “Count Me In” (a tribute to all the dead rock stars Palmer could meet if he goes to the Bad Place when he dies) and “This Monkey” tip the balance toward melody without stinting on intensity. “Tomorrow” and the title track (penned by Emma Tobin) scan absolutely winsome, but Palmer gives the game away with “What Would Paul Westerberg Do.” While the author doesn’t apply the Replacements leader’s love of Stones/Faces dirt, his devotion to toughness and tunefulness in equal measure reflects the influence of his hero without direct imitation. That’s rock & roll, after all, and so is Charts & Graphs.