The Upshot: A fun, almost nostalgic power pop jam spread across 10 tracks.
BY JOHN B. MOORE
When it came time to pull together their fourth record, Hawk’s David Hawkins and longtime guitarist Aaron Bakker called in some big names to help fill out the band. Bassist/keyboardists/singer Ken Stringfellow (Posies, Big Star), vocalist Gary Louris (Jayhawks, Ray Davies, Golden Smog) and drummer Pete Thomas (Elvis Costello, Johnny Cash, Elliott Smith) were all corralled to join Hawk in the studio and the result is a fun, almost nostalgic power pop jam spread across 10 tracks.
There are some moments of modern Americana – the harmonies and backing vocals on a song like “Take My Time” sound like it could have come off of a Wilco record – but for the most part, the band draws inspiration form a wide range of ‘70s artists to flesh out the sound here. You can hear it everywhere from the organ-drenched “Lay Me Down Easy” to The Raspberries-esque “Allison’s Gone.”
The band’s strongest moment, however is on the one song that sounds like an anomaly on this record, the melancholy country track “Dry Your Eyes,” that closes Bomb Pop. You can’t help but wonder how much stronger this already solid album would be if they offered a few more original takes like this one.
DOWNLOAD: “Not Just Lonely,” “Take My Time” and “Dry Your Eyes”