SUNSHINE POP: A joyous, disorderly brightness
FROM Murcia, southeastern Spain YELLOW MELODIES have just released ‘Sunshine Pop,’ an album pulling together twelve original songs included on three EPs released by the band during the pandemic.
There’s a joyous, disorderly brightness to the album, a heavenly mix of Spanish and English vocals, melodies from heaven, and enough bright, crisp, summer guitar licks to keep you warm during the depths of a Calamocha winter.
“The initial idea was to release three EPs with five songs each,” said Rafa Skam, (vocals/guitar). “We did the first at the end of 2020, then came the virus, so we had enough time to go to the studio to record the second and the third EP, as there were no gigs because of the pandemic.
“Each CD, in limited editions of one hundred, featured four of our own songs and a cover of an artist or band we admired and that had passed away recently. Then came our tribute to the Ramones ‘Pleasant Dreams’ album that we covered as it was their 40th anniversary, and also our favourite Ramones album. And now ‘Sunshine Pop’ has just come out, on vinyl, CD, and digital, featuring all our own songs from the EPs.”
With influences ranging from The Beatles, The Beach Boys, Belle and Sebastian, BMX Bandits, Lush, Pulp and The Boo Radleys, ‘Sunshine Pop’ is one of the most diverse albums I’ve heard all year, and despite the band’s Spanish blood, keen listeners will also be rewarded by a charming Gallic sound should they elect to listen hard enough.
“We try to do music with a positive vibe in order to help us, or the people who listen to our tunes, get away from our daily jobs, that’s why any of these songs can remind you to holidays in the south of France,” adds Skam.
If Yellow Melodies were a British band, you would have heard about them by now, you’d probably own ‘Sunshine Pop,’ but they’re not, and you don’t. So why aren’t the current crop of Spanish independent bands known to a wider audience?
“This is difficult to answer,” admits Skam, “as I think we have more fans, or at least, more people who buy our records, out of Spain. I also think that there are really good bands in Spain, with good productions.
“In Spain if you are famous you are in all festival line-ups. Most of the Spanish festivals have a similar line-up, and they are very boring for me, a very commercial sound that I don’t like. But there are others that I love as they try to add not very well-known bands in their line-ups, and that’s amazing.
“Perhaps they are more known outside Spain. That’s what I think it happens to us, it seems there are more people interested in our music from outside Spain than from our own country.”
This new record is a luxurious experience, pure, unadulterated, joyful, psychedelic power pop. It’s a healing album, a cleansing album, an album that recharges the soul, and my sweet Lord, who doesn’t need that as the curtain begins to fall on the year from hell.
‘Sunshine Pop’ was recorded at Pepe Moreno’s PM Studio, released on vinyl by ‘Old Bad Habits,’ ‘Hurrah! Música,’ and ‘Discos Imprescindibles,’ and on CD by the Canadian, ‘The Beautiful Music.’
THE YELLOW MELODIES are Rafa Skam (vocals/guitar), Antonio Clares (bass/backing vocs), Carlos Abrisqueta (keys/guitars), José Ángel Hernández (drums), with Norma Hamilton adding backing vocals.
Purchase SUNSHINE POP here: Sunshine Pop | The Yellow Melodies (bandcamp.com)
(Photo (c) Jose Carlos Nievas)