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Posted by on Jan 31, 2023 in Music, News, Powerpop |

Steve Stoeckel – The Power of And

Steve Stoeckel – The Power of And

Connoisseurs of melodic power pop will be excited to hear that a solo Steve Stoeckel album is on the way. On February 24, Big Stir Records will release The Power of And, a fifteen track effort that covers a lot of artistic ground from Spongetones-like Beatles pop to the XTC influenced stylings of Jamie & Steve.

Stoeckel starts things off with “Laura Lynn”, a 2:19 stomper. Spongetones bandmates Pat Walters and Jamie Hoover contribute to “Mod Girl, another winner. The understated “Strange Cameo” is reminiscent of any number of McCartney gems. It’s impossible not to fall in love with this tune. The 20 second guitar solo is perfect. It was my favorite track of the year until…..more on that later.

“Skippy’s Parade” is a short, pleasant instrumental frolic about halfway through the album. Not only does it give the listener a chance to recalibrate half way through the disc but it may also serve as a marker that, in lieu of the vinyl experience, separates imaginary sides from one another.

With a Little Help from His Friends

If you like your pop on the rockier side, look no further than “Christine”. At one point, Stoeckel stops a word short, leaving the listener dangling on a lyrical edge. That brief millisecond of tension demands that a passive listener become an active one. One feels naturally compelled to fill in the blank, so to speak. It’s brilliant.

Steve breaks out the ukelele for “Just One Kiss”. Its irresistible melody makes it the ideal single. But as good as all these songs are, the album reaches its zenith on the title track. It’s lyrically brilliant. And musically, there’s a sensitivity reminiscent of any number of tracks from XTC’s Apple Venus album.

Other performers appearing on The Power of And include: Joel Tinnel (electric guitar solos), Eric Willhelm (drums, backing vocals), Jamie Hoover (backing vocals), David Harper (organ), Pat Walters (guitar solos), Keith Shamel (electric guitar solos), Rick McClanahan (electric guitar solos, backing vocals), Stacy Carson (drums), Irene Pena (vocals), Michael Mitsch (pennywhistle, bodhran drum), Chris Garges (drums), Elena Rogers (backing vocals), Bruce Gordon (backing vocals).

Get Steve Stoeckel’s The Power of And

Steve Stoeckel’s The Power of And is not to be missed. You can pre-order it from Big Stir’s Bandcamp page. HIGHLY RECOMMENDED.