Reviewed by Jim Caligiuri, Fri., Oct. 4, 2013
Although he's originally from Lubbock, not a hint of Texas twang comes from JoDee Purkeypile. The former Alice Rose frontman's second solo effort continues his fascination with power pop. That Messenger does so with a jolt of originality makes him among the leaders in a genre that thankfully refuses to die. While decidedly rooted in a sound stretching from the Beatles, Zombies, and Badfinger to Nick Lowe and Squeeze, Purkeypile's riffs, melodies, and subject matter are by no means stuck in the past. "Storm on the Sea of You and Me" comes across as Okkervil River meets the Smiths with George Harrison on guitar. Meanwhile there's a hint of Cheap Trick's impishness with "She Can Ride a Bike" and hints of Marc Bolan and T. Rex glam on the snake-y "I Think It's Alright." Throughout, Purkeypile accomplishes the difficult task of making something old and out of fashion into a sound that's bracing and alive.