Tuesday, July 22, 2008

Quick Turns

Off BroadwayIf you grew up in the Chicago area, then you've heard of Off Broadway and have probably even seen them perform. Off Broadway was a late-'70s power pop group from Chicago. This band was similar to Cheap Trick with their hopped-up melodies and catchy hooks, but with a little more quirky, almost new wave sort of bent to it. But they were doomed to obscurity because they did not have the personality or the hardness that Cheap Trick did. Opening for heavy metal acts didn't do much for their careers either, putting two different genres of music together is risky at best and metalheads are not particularly fond of powerpop, thus a lot of people hated them. They wrote catchy songs and managed to sell around 200,000 copies of their 1979 debut album, On. They may never have reached the big time but they are remembered quite fondly by power pop enthusiasts such as myself. I saw these guys back in 1981, I think they opened for Nazareth. They had a good set and the music was very good, but unfortunately their stage presence couldn't bear the brunt of the metal crowd. The band slogged it out until 1983 and finally called it quits. I think the comparisons to Cheap Trick literally killed them. Which was very unfair to them because they were quite good.

Their first album On has to be one of the most criminally overlooked albums in rock history. Quick Turns was their second album which came out in 1980. It's not quite the stunner their first one was, but still there's not a bad song on it. This album's production is actually rawer than the first one, with more of an emphasis on rock rather than pop. The album actually made it to CD in 2002 but I think it may already be out of print again.

Bad Girl
Buy It

Funny Toon