Friday, May 5, 2017

Derrick Anderson - A World Of My Own

For those of us who’ve seen Derrick Anderson perform with The Bangles or fill in on occasion with The Smithereens, it’s not surprising to find members of those bands helping out on his solo debut. But they’re just part of an army of all-star guests that includes Matthew Sweet; Steve Barton from Translator; Tommy Keene; Bob, John, and Susan Cowsill; Darian Sahanaja and Probyn Gregory from The Wondermints; and Kim Shattuck from The Muffs. It’s a safe bet they all enjoyed recording A World Of My Own because it’s an engaging collection of songs that taps into power pop, the 1960s, and a bit of 1970s rock.

It’s possible to detect influences from the participating musicians, particularly The Smithereens on the guitar-driven romance of “Waiting For You.” But A World Of My Own most often resembles the band Anderson performed with years ago, The Andersons, and he’s got members helping him out here. Derrick Anderson’s solo debut is focused on power pop, but he adds funky horns and keyboards to “You Don’t Have To Hurt No More,” and opts for garage rock on “Checking Out” and “Stop Messin’ About.”

“A Mother’s Love” and “When I Was Your Man” could have been hit singles in the 1960s, and the irresistible “Phyllis And Sharon” has a satirical bite. Anderson’s lyrics are well-crafted and convincing throughout A World Of My Own. “Send Me Down A Sign” deals with finding one’s place in life, and on “Happiness,” a guy is waiting for his lover to return. Anderson switches to a slow, authentic 1970s approach on “Something New.” The bonus track cover of “Norwegian Wood” takes some getting used to, but this hard-edged reworking of The Beatles’ classic goes in the win column as well.

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