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Jody and the Jerms - Started Something (JATJ Records)

16 February 2023

Mention the word pop these days, and many people’s eyes, those who perhaps consider themselves more discerning music pickers, glaze over. Thoughts turn to landfill chart bands, dance routines, guest rappers, auto-tuned vocals, style over substance, PR over purity…all the stock in trade of the fickle and fleeting, fad and fashion of the mainstream.

But those of us who have been around the sun a few times will remember when that wasn’t the case. As the shadow of punk drifted away, and before identikit indie bands were all the rage, there was a perfect pop window. A place where the likes of The Primitives, The Go-Gos, The Bangles, and, best of all, The Darling Buds ruled the roost.

I am not saying that Jody and the Jerms are deliberately nostalgic, and they are certainly not merely plunderers of the past; their musical vision is too intelligent for such simple tricks, but if they popped up on the radio in 1989, they would have sounded right at home.

“Started Something” is a joyous romp through everything that made pop so great during what many consider its golden age and what, given a fair wind and a lucky roll of the dice, might do again. It is sassy and full of buoyant energy, shot through with chime and charm, and has lashings of sing-along-ability (is that a word? It is now.)

It is pop-hearted but borrows just enough from the realms of indie and boogie-blues and saunters along with so much alt-pop swagger that you can’t help but take note.

Poised and perfect pop is back on the menu!

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