You know how you pick up a CD or download a song that you just can’t stop listening to? You find yourself singing along in the car, at the office, or while flying your jetpack over Boston Common to taunt the homeless? It’s just so good, you wanna tell the whole world about it, or at the very least commandeer their radios so that they have to give it a listen?
That’s how I’m feeling about the new Cheap Trick disc, Rockford.
I’m not a connoisseur of the band by any stretch. I was too young to enjoy their late ’70s heyday and I shunned most of their ’80s power-balladeering [“The Flame”, etc.]. But after seeing the band live a few weeks back at Avalon, I decided to take a chance on Rockford. And it was money well spent. Of the sh-tloads of music I’ve bought throughout the year, Rockford is only the second disc without a single clunker [the other being Sam’s Town by the Killers]. I gotta give ‘em their props: one of the few “classic” rock bands that still boasts its original line-up, still sounds as good as it ever has — “If It Takes a Lifetime” and “Come On Come On Come On” from Rockford stand up ridiculously well against “Surrender” and “I Want You To Want Me” — and is still making music worth listening to.
The best way to dig on this disc is to hear it. I recommend dropping whatever you’re doing right now and visiting the Cheap Trick homepage, where, using the audio player on the left side of the page, you can listen to “If It Takes a Lifetime” — one of Rockford’s best tracks — in its entirety. Or, even better: Take that dollar bill you were gonna spend on gum, two cigarettes, or one-third of a can of Red Bull and buy the opening track, “Welcome to the World,” at iTunes. It’s a gorgeous chunk of Beatlesque harmonies and slamming guitars: textbook power pop you won’t be able to shake from your head no matter how hard you try. Seriously. Just follow this link and go buy it. The best ninety-nine cents you’ll ever spend.
Okay, so that’s my plug. What about yours? What should we be listening to?
PS: Stalkers, take note: This year’s Christmas at Fenway event will feature Schilling and Varitek, and Terry Francona will treat the crowd to a pantsless rendition of “Twas the Night Before Christmas.” Starting tomorrow at noon, you can log on to redsox.com for your chance to attend. Check here for details.