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It goes without saying that power pop bands that ape the BEATLES, BIG STAR and the KINKS are a dime-a-dozen – make that dozens. It helps people forget that there was a wave of power popsters in the late 70s and very early 80s that took pages more from a more aggressive book, borrowing elements from glam rock and looking beyond the Beatles to the artists that inspired the Fab Four to pick up the pop hooks. That kind of power pop is making a comeback, and the hardworking kids in the GREATEST HITS are at the forefront of the movement with their second LP Saved My Life. The Seattle quintet’s punk-infused (but nowhere near dominated) sugar rush has more in common with, say, the REAL KIDS or the BOYS than JELLYFISH or the Big Deal roster. For personable frontguy NILS FOREVER and his crew, SWEET, EDDIE COCHRAN, the BEACH BOYS, the HEARTBREAKERS and girl groups lead the hit parade as often as power pop’s Liverpudlian forefathers. This isn’t to say that the Hits traffic in influence-peddling – the band simply engages in tough, peppy singalongs like “Gateway LUV,” “Ghost Town” and “If Rock Hadn’t Saved Me” with the joie de vivre of a group not plowing overfarmed fields. Power pop used to mean rock & roll, after all, and the Greatest Hits remember and celebrate it.
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