(2014) Pop Detective/Primitive Records PDR014
The Jellybricks have always given us edgy, fuzz driven power pop – and they’re back once again for a Youngstown Tune-Up. The Harrisburg, Pa.-based band, fronted by lead vocalist Larry Kennedy, sound tighter and better than ever. “About The Weekend” echos classic Elvis Costello and Nick Lowe with its signature choral riffs. “Probably Me” is full of energy, starting up with shouts of “Hey Hey!” and driving chords in the chorus, with an excellent break between verses.
As the band has grown more mature, it focuses less on the growling angst of their earlier sound and focuses on lyric and smart melody.” I’ll Go Mine” is an anthem to a break-up, with a solid guitar structure reminding me a bit of The Goo Goo Dolls or Counting Crows. Lots of great highlights here, “Eventually” is a wonder of harmonies and classic melody, and “After You” is another great sing-along theme. Bottom line is this is the best Jellybricks album I’ve heard to date, and I’ve been following them since the late ’90s. They definitely deserve a spot in this years top ten list.
(2012) Pop Detective/Primitive Records PDR008
The Jellybricks have been the model of power pop consistency, with solid melodic rock since 1997, and with the new EP Suckers, the band continues its terrific tradition. The mood is a bit more downbeat than past albums, with similarities to Superdrag (“Rock n’ Roll Suicide”) and Blink-182 (“Beryllium”) cropping up.
But the bands sound is even tighter and music arrangements are denser, from the opening track to the excellent “Sold” with its shout along chorus. The moving rock ballad “Dead End Girl” shows off the excellent harmonies and the acoustic version of the neurotic “Who Is God,” is a re-make from the band’s debut Kinky Boot Beast. One of my favorite EPs this year, pick this one up.
Goodnight to Everyone
(2008) Primitive Records PRIM2008
The Jellybricks are power pop veterans and I welcome the fourth release with open ears. Produced by Saul Zonana and three years in the making, it doesn’t disappoint. Fans of IKE, Matthew Sweet and The Tories, who enjoy a heavier produced guitar sound will enjoy it for sure.
“Ruin Us” is just an example of great shimmering melodic guitar pop. The Jellybricks’ maturing songwriting skills and musical prowess continue to impress with “Broken Record” and the opener “Eyes Wide” could easily be a radio-ready single if people gave them the chance.
(2004) Kool Kat Records PURR2006
While the Jellybricks have always been considered a power pop band, their first two discs didn't immediately recall classic Beatle-isms so much as they sounded like a lot of catchy, guitar-driven indie rock of the late '90s. That all changes on their much-delayed third disc, Power This, which -- despite its title -- is their most sugary "pop" album yet.
Producer Cliff Hillis gives Power This the same treatment he's used on his own albums -- the controlled bursts of chiming (but powerful) guitars and pounding drums are mixed up-front, but so are the vocals, lending everything a very clean and bright mix. And while guitarist Bryce Connor's songs are gruff and rocky, the lion's share of tunes -- sung by the band's main vocalist, the sweet-voiced Larry Kennedy -- are smoother than anything the band has yet produced. Like before, some of it doesn't stick on the first listen, but it's generally because these songs are full of little tricks and turns -- unusual turns of verse like in "Simple Me," or the gorgeous guitar solo on "Takes Too Long" -- that unfold on repeat listens. Power This, unlike Soap Opera or Kinky Boot Beast, sounds firmly like the work of power pop revivalists, and fans of the style should find much to love.
— All Music
(1999) Rite-Off Records 1137-2
The Jellybricks gained a good deal of exposure through "International Pop Overthrow" appearances and friendships with other well-known power pop acts, and Soap Opera is a convincing portrait of the band's qualities. Fairly crisp arrangements and catchy songs -- such as "Speechless," "Fingernails," and the title track -- distinguish this album as a move forward into radio-ready territory. While occasionally Soap Opera suffers from muddy production or indistinguishable material, there is more than enough here to satisfy the average pop fan. And the Jellybricks' lyrics and general outlook -- symbolized best by the disclaimer on the back of the CD ("The music found here is an appropriate accompaniment for dancing, staring at the walls, light snacking, and many other activities") are refreshingly upbeat and jubilant. While not perfect, Soap Opera solidifies the Jellybricks' deserved place in the late-1990s power pop revival.