Pop Co-Op – Factory Settings
Steve Stoeckel, Joel Tinnel, Bruce Gordon and Stacy Carson are way ahead of the curve. Social distancing had not yet become a household term when the band created its first long distance collaboration entitled Four State Solution. With 2020’s Factory Settings, Pop Co-Op has mastered the art of social distancing and created a truly wonderful pop LP in the process.
Each band member contributes their own unique pop sensibilities to the mix. Steve Stoeckel takes the lion’s share of the acoustic guitar duties. Joel Tinnel does the same with guitar solos. Bruce Gordon is a master at arranging harmonies and Stacy Carson takes care of any percussive duties. All band members sing lead and backing vocals as well as write. Pop Co-Op is a band true to its name, the total equaling more than the sum of its individual parts.
“No Man’s Land” is the perfect lead off track. Irresistibly catchy and a little over 3 minutes, this radio friendly slice of pop perfection would fit in nicely with a Badfinger mix tape. “Flaws of Attraction” is catchy in a different kind of way, sounding like a TV sitcom theme that’s sneaky good.
“Catching Light” is a delightfully bouncy bit of Hollies style pop and perhaps the best single so far this year. Listen to Steve Stoeckel’s vocal inflections on this one, placing emphasis or adding pauses where it’s most effective. You simply can’t sing a song better than this one. Co-written by all four members of Pop Co-Op, “Underworld” has a Police/Sting vibe and all the earmarks of an 80’s radio hit. Joel Tinnel’s guitar work is absolutely savage here. In fact, his work is noteworthy throughout the entire album.
Just when you think the record couldn’t get any better, along comes “Price of Admission”, an incredibly clever song that kicks ass harder than a cross-eyed Rockette (as my friend Lord Carrett is fond of saying). Alex Tinnel contributes some brilliant piano work to “Admission” too, making this track yet another highlight. If these guys were to play live, this is the song that would bring the house down.
ORDER IT NOW and get digital bonus tracks!
Before the Corona virus put the clampdown on things, the CDs were packed to ship from the manufacturer. Unfortunately, they’re still in the warehouse awaiting shipping. But that’s okay. BUY IT NOW FROM FUTUREMAN RECORDS and you’ll get the digital version immediately with bonus tracks. The physical CD will follow as soon as the whole social distancing thing lifts. That said, you can get the MP3 version at the Pop Co-Op Bandcamp site (without a CD) for just $11. Either way, they gotcha covered!