With the 2017 Spyderpop Records release of his album “Limitations Of Source Tape”, Chris Church laid to rest any notion that his power pop leanings had taken a back seat to any of his other varied musical proclivities, as ‘L.O.S.T.” garnered excellent reviews and claimed its rightful spot on various album of the year lists from critics and fans alike.
The new Chris Church album “Backwards Compatible” is just as full of hooks as its predecessor while being a somewhat louder affair. “No Letting Go” gives an unironic and well delivered nod to the melodic side of hard and heavy rock, “Left In The Summer” has a jagged stop/start quality that is somehow both bittersweet and urgent, and “Begin Again” is the kind of yearning power pop for which Church has become known, with bass and lead guitar solo performed by the legendary Bill Lloyd. 12 songs, all guitar driven pop rock, no filler.
In addition to the guest spot from Lloyd, “Backwards Compatible” features Lindsay Murray of Gretchen’s Wheel contributing stunning background vocals to every track. Excellent performances abound by usual suspects like long time guitar slinger friend Scott Cornette and more, as well as a few newcomers to the impressively talented crew that Church and producer Lori Franklin seamlessly wrangle here.
“Backwards Compatible” is Chris Church’s muse crashing squarely onto a style hybrid
he likes to call “heavy melody”. Both forward thinking and in control of its obvious retro influences, the thud of this thunderous and immensely catchy record is anything but dull.
For fans of Todd Rundgren/Utopia, The Babys, Cheap Trick, Raspberries, Def Leppard, Billy Squier, Dokken, Teenage Fanclub, Bill Lloyd, Tommy Keene, Kiss, Sweet, The Producers.