Following the release of a couple of superb albums and a slew of EPs celebrating a classic late 70s/early 80s power pop sound, Kurt Baker relocated from Portland, Maine to Madrid. New horizons brought new inspirations and Baker joined pop punk/power pop band Bullet Proof Lovers and also formed a new band, The Kurt Baker Combo. Although the Combo still worshipped good old power pop, their sound was a little harder around the edges than the previous Kurt Baker Band, injecting Baker’s songwriting with a touch of garage rock. This was most obvious on the Combo’s second release – 2018’s ‘Let’s Go Wild’ – where a desire for fuzzy energies sometimes came at the expense of some great melodies.
Purveyors of a whole world of pop punk and power pop music, Spanish Label Ghost Highway Recordings will be best known for distributing records by The Dahlmanns, Bullet Proof Lovers and Electric Frankenstein. Their contribution to a series of charity releases ‘Music For Gloves’ not only gives a quick insight into the label’s wares, but offers fans a few previously unavailable gems for a good cause.
When the Kurt Baker Combo recorded their ‘Let’s Go Wild!’ album in 2018, they found themselves with material that didn’t make the final cut. One of the unused songs, ‘Turn It Around’ is a brilliant power pop number, pretty much as good as anything the KBC have ever recorded. It’s so good, it’s actually better than a few of the tracks that ended up on the LP.
In November 2019, Real Gone reached its ten year anniversary of being online. To celebrate, we shared thoughts on ten albums we loved from that decade. That list came with two strict rules beyond becoming favourites: each year had to be represented by one album and each album had to in some way have helped our site to become more established.
As we reach the end of the year, it’s time to look back more broadly on some of our favourite albums of the ’10s; albums that have kept us listening for pleasure long after the reviews and coverage have been completed. If you’re a regular visitor to Real Gone, lots of these names will be familiar by now, but we hope this time for looking back helps to reconnect with a couple of old favourites, or find you a new one somewhere along the way. [Full reviews & streams can be found by clicking on the individual titles.]
It’s hard to believe that Real Gone has reached its tenth anniversary. There have been a vast amount of albums and EPs reviewed in that time. Some captured a moment somewhere in the world of DIY recordings; others continue to be unloved by the masses but we’re still more than glad we got to help spread the word in our own way.
Then there have been those albums destined to become classics; albums we’ve continued to love long after our reviews were shared. For our tenth anniversary, it seemed only appropriate that we took a look back at a few landmark albums from our first decade online – an album from each year we think holds up well; recordings that continue to be important to us and have somehow allowed us to build a following and still have an internet presence… Ten years – ten albums… Every one a classic.