Posts Tagged ‘Ben Cook’

Young Guv – “Try Not To Hang On So Hard”

No slouch year for Ben Cook, it seems. Just weeks after the release of his last record for Run For Cover, Guv I, he announces the release of its fraternal twin Guv II. The first taste of G2 seems to have sprouted from the same well of ‘90s power pop that dominates its brother in arms album from earlier in the year. “Try Not To Hang On So Hard” is just as infected with strums and thick choruses as anything on G1, and despite an origin tale rooted in acid-tripping in his childhood home, there’s no psych ripples here, just thick hooks and sunshine choruses. I’m not gonna belabor someone for leaning on the Fanclub too heavy, especially when the end result finds itself perfectly lodged in my brain for days. The new LP is out on October 25th.



Support the artist. Buy it HERE.

0 Comments

Young Guv

I may have mentioned that I have a particular soft spot for Young Guv’s 2015 mini-album Ripe 4 Luv, not in the least because it’s Ben Cook’s most pure distillation of his power pop instincts. That statement’s gonna have to be amended, though, because the release of GUV I acts as a direct descendant of that album, dragging the line from the late ‘70s and early ‘80s right into the mid ‘90s for power pop that was thicker, sunnier, and a touch dreamier. There’s less punk edge in this newer vision, but just as much pop. Young Guv has often served as a mutable base for Cook’s musical lens and while last year’s excursion into slippery funk had its charms, it’s clear that his pop heart beats the strongest.

Pick a point in the record and pretty much any track could have ruled the CMJ charts from ’91-’95. Cook’s shuffling his collection, throwing Matthew Sweet LPs into Fanclub sleeves. He’s rolling Velvet Crush licks in sprinkles of Sloan, second-album Superdrag, and L.A. hook-lovers The Blondes. It’s hard not to time shift when the album’s running through it’s almost heartbreakingly short runtime, and there’s some sort of universal injustice that Cook will never play in front of the racks at Sam Goody. Yet, despite this ingrained nostalgia, the songs also feel timeless, like the best pop from any era. They’re full of joy, bittersweet swoons, and a palpable yearning. Cook has proven that when he’s got pop on his side, his records are indispensable treasures there to comfort your core.



Support the artist. Buy it HERE.

0 Comments

Young Guv – “Traumatic”

Ben Cook’s transition from hardcore hammer to lo-fi burner and into power pop perfectionist has seen him master many genres without seemingly breaking a sweat. His previous outing for Slumberland, Ripe For Love, was one of 2015’s best (and yet somehow most overlooked) record. He continues to work towards the ’80s pop vein that’s been pulsing through his later work, though this time he’s turned down the power and slipped on a shade of New Wave that’s got him echoing Nick Lowe through a warm cassette player. The first cut from his upcoming single also taps a touch of early synthpop to the party, marrying the aesthetics of Strawberry Switchblade to the subtle sheen of Shoes-styled pristine pop. At this point I’m sold on Young Guv’s pop mastery and as long as he keeps churning out gems like this, I’m on the hook for life.

Support the artist. Buy it HERE.

0 Comments