I love my Metal, Prog Rock, Electric Jazz, Psychedelia and a million sub-genres inbetween, running parallel or hurtling off at a tangent, and one type of music that has stimulated my aural exciters since the time when the charts were filled with killer 45s by Squeeze, The Motors, Joe Jackson, The Vapors, Elvis Costello and XTC is what has come to be known as Powerpop. It was just pop music that wasn't shit back then, New Wave that favoured guitars over one fingered remedial synth parps, but now that everything has to come with a label, Powerpop seems to do the job quite adequately. Defining Powerpop isn't that simple, but I know it when I hear it, even though it can sound as lush and ethereal as The Wondermints and Jellyfish or as bruising and raucous as Cheap Trick's debut LP.
Even though I'm usually more of an LP man than a 7" single aficionado, Powerpop is one genre that sits really comfortably with the 7" format. Let's face it, if you can't get a chorus as dumb as Harpo Marx stuck in the listener's head inside three minutes, you ain't doing it right. Perhaps that's why I'm drawn to those dinky little picture sleeves whenever I'm breaking my back hunched over boxes of ill-organised vinyl flotsam in charity shops. As a fiscally-challenged kid, as the ugly end of the Seventies segued into the Eighties, spending 99 pence on a 7" single when I could have a Nice Price re-release of a classic album for £2.99 struck me as a pretty stupid thing to do. Perhaps nostalgia is what now prompts me to pick up some of those singles that I passed over in my skint youth, but that's definitely not the case with I Fell In Love Last Night by The Talkies. I didn't know the band existed until recently when a rummage at one of the aforementioned tat emporia turned up a copy of their one and only 7 incher.
That label just screams Powerpop doesn't it! Let's just say that I would have been very surprised to have spun the disc and heard Country music ambling out of my speakers. A Google search for The Talkies does nothing to shed any light on the band, so I can tell you absolutely nothing about them. They don't even crop up on YouTube, which leads me to think that this is a rare single, a fact fleshed out by Popsike which lists just two copies having sold at auction for £27 and £51. Not a bad return on my 50 pence investment. The real return though is that the grooves are full of enthusiastic and infectious DIY Powerpop. If anything, the B-side, Foreign Legion, is the better of the two tracks, immediately bringing to mind classic XTC. I'm pretty sure you won't hear this anywhere else, so enjoy!