Advertisement

Album Review: The Cherry Tops — <3 <3 <3


The Cherry Tops

<3 <3 <3
www.thecherrytops.bandcamp.com

Mission Creek Festival: Community Day Underground Showcase w/ the Spider Magnets, Cherry Tops, the Backlund, Contentious, Teenage Bigfoot, Black Belt Eagle Scout, Closet Witch

Gabe’s — Saturday, April 7 at 1 p.m.

The Cherry Tops, on their debut disc, <3 <3 <3, which dropped last year, have a delightfully unapologetic early ’60s vibe, fast and funny and full of joy. The seasalt lyrics (antagonistic in the sweetest way possible) are delightfully disarming; “I like my music loud/I like my hair a little long./Is that so wrong?” is the conceit of album opener “Eighty.” No one could accuse this band of being highbrow, but why would they want to be, when there’s a world of froth from half a century ago that’s been lying dormant for too long?

Singer Kyle Anthony is the glue that connects this ’60s throwback to the modern era. With echoes of Spike Slawson’s Me First and the Gimme Gimme’s tonality, Anthony nevertheless manages absolute sincerity. He’s got sass in his voice, no doubt — but he’s never tongue-in-cheek. The album closer, a cover of the tune “Let’s Twist Again” (a hit for Chuck Berry in 1961), is delivered with loving reverence.

The fast-paced album’s strongest moments are track four, “Game Show Geek,” and track five, “What’s Up.” “Game Show Geek,” one of the longer tracks (coming in at a whole 1:24) dances around with clever lyrics and references (“I’ll be yours tonight/if the price is right”) and offers some of the more interesting of the deliberately simple musical settings. “What’s Up” (at 1:48, the longest offering) is timeless. It could just as easily have been written in 1960 as in 2017, and it’s utterly serious and sweet.

This is a cotton candy record in flavor and weight, but it’s not the least bit saccharine. It’s cotton candy you can keep enjoying for as long as you’d like, without a hint of a stomach ache. The musicians are having pure fun and bringing the listener along with them. “I like to stay up late/I like to make up stupid songs,” sings Anthony on “Eighty.” “Is that so wrong?”


Thoughts? Tips? A cute picture of a dog? Share them with LV » editor@littlevillagemag.com

Advertisement

stanleymuseum.uiowa.edu/events

Advertisement

Summer Programs 2020

Get 150+ local restaurants delivered to your door in the Iowa City & Cedar Rapids areas!

Don’t let other people’s opinions win.

Vote for your favorite people, places and events in the Iowa City-Cedar Rapids area! In a time when local businesses need our support more than ever, your vote will send a little love to the places that make our community special. And don’t forget to tell us why—the best comments will be published in our December Best of the CRANDIC 2021 issue! Voting ends September 30.

Read the Best of the CRANDIC issue, on stands now

The Future is Unwritten

You look to Little Village for today’s stories. Your sustaining support will help us write tomorrow’s.

Regular

$10/mo or $120/year
(AUTO-RENEW)
The cost of doing this work really adds up! Your contribution at this level will cover telephone and internet expenses for one month at the LV editorial offices.

Italic

$20/mo or $240/year
(AUTO-RENEW)
$240 is enough to cover one month’s costs for sending out our weekly entertainment newsletter, The Weekender. Make a contribution at this level to put a little more oomph on your support and your weekend.

Bold

$30/mo or $360/year
(AUTO-RENEW)
LittleVillageMag.com connects eastern Iowa culture with the world. Your contribution at this level will cover the site’s hosting costs for three months. A bold move for our boldest supporters!

All monthly and annual contributors receive:

  • Recognition on our Supporters page (aliases welcome)
  • Exclusive early access when we release new half-price gift cards
  • Access to a secret Facebook group where you can connect with other supporters and discuss the latest news and upcoming events (and maybe swap pet pics?) with the LV staff
  • Invitations to periodic publisher chats (held virtually for now) to meet with Matt and give him a piece of your mind, ask your burning questions and hear more about the future plans for Little Village, Bread & Butter Magazine, Witching Hour Festival and our other endeavors.