Tonight July 25, 2008, the International Pop Overthrow Fest will kick-off in Los Angeles and will run till August 9. There will be close to 150 bands performing this year in LA . This music festival has now been running for 10 years and is held annually in about ten different locations. For power pop music enthusiasts this event is manna from heaven! Not only does one get to see cutting edge bands in this particular genre, but the venues are intimate and inviting too.
I was fortunate to go to the one in New York City in 2004 and have been to the one in Liverpool twice now. Highlights that year were the Grip Weeds and Myracle Brah. The one in Liverpool is particularly good because the bands perform in 3 different clubs in close proximity to each other. The remodeled Cavern is one of the clubs that is used so it is quite exciting to see these bands in such a hallowed place.
Three bands in particular stood out this last time in Liverpool. The Mellowmen from Sweden - built around the amazing voice and songwriting of Andreas Nyberg. The band recall a number of beacons from the 60's and 70's without sounding like any of them. The set was energetic and mesmerizing at the same time. The Avenues from Leeds, England were a great bonus! The lead singer was a natural performer and their harmonies reminded me of the Association, Turtles and the Beach Boys. Last but not least Swedish band Marmalade Souls were brilliant. Their music was represented by close knit harmonies and extremely catchy songs. They even did a fabulous cover of Please Please Me which was so appropriate in Liverpool.
I will be eagerly anticipating next years IPO Fest in Liverpool. This week I will be researching some of the bands that will be performing at IPO in Los Angeles and I'll write about the ones whose music impresses me the most.