Alexander, Arthur – One Bar Left – New LP
Arthur Alexander did what he’s always done – he went for the jugular. “America, here I come!”
Faster than you can say “Polska Kielbasa,” Arthur was helping to form The Poppees, one of the hottest bands in NYC at the dawn of the punk rock era, a time that changed the face of rock ‘n’ roll forever. The Poppees, often dubbed "The Fab Four Of The Bowery," played regularly at Max’s Kansas City and CBGB’s and became the very first new artist signed by the visionary Greg Shaw to his Bomp! Records label. The band accrued critical acclaim and ignited the just-burgeoning American power-pop scene. Leaving The Poppees behind, Arthur founded his new band, Sorrows, one of the most supercharged power-pop bands NYC had seen, staggering their audiences with blistering live shows. Sorrows scored a label deal with CBS Records and released two albums, their debut Teenage Heartbreak becoming a classic, sought after by crate-diggers from Japan to Iowa. After Sorrows disbanded Arthur relocated to Los Angeles, working as an independent producer helping the next generation of young artists realize their musical vision.
Finally, after years of producing others, Arthur’s own music came calling again. He selected a batch of songs he had written over the years and recorded his first solo album, One Bar Left, inviting his friends from Sorrows, Wojtek Pilichowski Band, Prima Donna, Dr. Boogie and The Blessings to come along for the ride.
From the opening thrust of One Bar Left, to the irresistible guitar hook setting the pace for "Hard To Get," it's instantly clear that Arthur writes songs that hit the pleasure centers of the brain like a Howitzer. "Shot In The Heart" marries the wide-screen sound quality of an Ennio Morricone film soundtrack with Phil Spector’s “Wall of Sound” like you haven’t heard since - well, Phil Spector.
"I'll Get Your Love Someday" and its Merseybeat-meets-Rockabilly vibe displays the melding of styles Arthur incorporates while never sacrificing the intangibles that make songs hits. There are crunchers like "(She Got Me) Wang Dang Doodle” and a jagged-edged "Psycho-Automatic." “Money ‘N Love” will make you think you walked into the AC/DC show - with a twist or two. The punk-laced mayhem, chaos and venom of “Dead End Man” will leave you breathless, only to dissolve into the quiet warmth and beauty of “Hello Suzanne.” “Just a Little Longer” (in English and French) has more memorable hooks jangling in your ears than you'll hear for the coming year. And when Arthur decides to do a cover? He turns it on its head. You’ve never heard Sam Cooke’s classic “Bring It On Home To Me” done like this before. Guaranteed.
It's impossible to deny the pull that great rock ‘n’ roll has. It's indescribable, but you know immediately when you hear it. Expect that feeling as soon as you hit “play” on this sucker. Arthur's credo has always been: "The song is King.” He's known it forever. And after hearing this incredible collection of his songs, you'll know it's all about Arthur Alexander, ready to cement a musical legacy that launched some of the finest rock n’ roll the downtown NYC scene ever produced.
released May 4, 2018
Arthur Alexander was at ground zero of the first wave of the New York City punk scene in the late 70's as guitarist for Poppees, the first band signed to the legendary Bomp! Records. Poppees were heavily active back in the day dominating venues like CBGB's and Max’s Kansas City helping them garner their nickname the 'Beatles of the Bowery'. Their music is a brut combination of harmonious melodies and guitar jangley pop played with a street wise toughness that mirrored the bands surroundings at the time. Poppees were one of the first New York bands to help bridge the gap between new wave, power pop and punk and were one of the key bands to ignite the first-wave of American Power-Pop. So if you wanted to trace the roots of American Power-Pop, Arthur Alexander is a core part of it's nucleus through Poppees and his later Power-Pop hitmakers Sorrows. 'One Bar Left' marks Arthur's trailblazing hallmark as a solo artist and he's joined by an impressive backing band including members of Dr. Boogie, Sorrows, Prima Donna, and The Blessings. Real deal Rock 'n Roll is the name of the game here and Arthur comes firing in all different shapes and sizes. 'One Bar Left' runs the gamut including a number of the the Punk infected Power Pop anthems that's he's built a career on to songs that have flashes of proto-Punk, 80' Radio Rock, a little Rockabilly, some Mersey Beat finesse and a steady stream of of pop filtered guitar shredders. Fiery riffs, explosive drums, and relentless harmonies careen together in Rock 'n Roll tranquility with Arthur Alexander at the helm showing why he's still one of the best after 40+ years in the game. He certainly has a knack for writing uber-catchy pop slaying guitar anthems, and that's no better on display than on 'One Bar Left'.