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The Peppermint Kicks - s/t (Rum Bar)

5 August 2021

Both veterans of the Boston rock & roll underground, singers/songwriters/guitarists Sal Baglio (the Stompers, the Amplifier Heads) and Dan Kopko (Watts, the Shang Hi-Los) combine forces to form the Peppermint Kicks. As might be expected from a couple of tunesmiths with shared reverence for the Who, the Kinks, Cheap Trick and other power pop and classic rock luminaries, the pair drop effortless diamonds with catchy melodies, high energy and just the right amount of attitudinal pizzazz for an album that sounds like a lost gem from the late seventies. “Strawberry Girls” and “The Morning Girls” heartily salute the inspiration behind so many pop tunes, while “Shag ‘72,” “Roxetta Jones” and “Hey Fanzine!” kick some wistfully nostalgic ass. But the duo saves most of its wit and heart for songs about the medium in which it lives. The rousing “Rock & Roll Rampage,” cheeky “When Rock & Roll Met Your Dad” and obvious show-closing anthem “Johnny D’s (Play It Again)” blast out timely reminders of why Baglio and Kopko do what they do, and why we’re eager to listen. “I don’t hear a single,” Kopko sings on the eponymous track, “just pointless rock & roll.” Exactly.