((Brendan Benson)) Band Profile and Upcoming SXSW Concerts - Oh My Rockness

Brendan Benson is power pop and power pop is Brendan Benson. And he is simply one of the most talented songwriters in the is-he-or-isn't-he-indie world. Very similar in style to his pal Jason Faulkner (Jellyfish), Benson writes concise yet complex songs with unbelievably catchy hooks.

His writing seems equal parts art and science. You know the songs are going to have a verse/chorus/verse thing and clock in under four minutes, but his flair in executing the formula is what makes him an artist. His songs on the surface sound like fun, happy songs that could be the soundtrack to any summer. But the lyrics are often dark (drug abuse, kidnapping) and depressing (heartbreak.)

I can't count the number of times his first album, One Mississippi, played on my stereo. Released almost 10 years ago, it still finds its way onto my iPod on a monthly basis. His follow-up on Startime, Lapalco, dishes out hand-clap choruses better than any pop album in recent years. And his latest album, Alternative to Love, has more hits than there are bad metaphors in music reviews. I like this guy. A lot.

Published February 17, 2005
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