The album Stuck on Nothing by Philadelphia's Free Energy is in heavy rotation at my place, finally knocking out Gaslight Anthem's American Slang as my favorite album of the past year. This is an infectious album, full of guitar-driven power-pop classics that evoke The Strokes (Dark Trance; Dream City; All I Know), Thin Lizzy (Bad Stuff; Young Hearts), Bobby Gillespie and Primal Scream (Hope Child), early Mick Jagger & the Stones (Wild Winds) and most of all, The Ramones (Free Energy, Light Love).
I first heard about Free Energy via Delta Airlines' Sky in-flight magazine, where they were compared with Cheap Trick. The pure pleasure that this band bestows is Cheap Trick-worthy, for sure. However, I don't reallly hear Cheap Trick in the music - maybe just in their take-no-prisoners, power-pop attitude.
There's an unselfconscious innocence to this record that echoes the pure joy and three chord confidence of The Ramones, right down to the cover art: a Converse high-top. If you're able to resist singing along with the na, na, na, na, nas on Dream City, then you're stronger than I. Ditto for Bang Pop. This tune might someday unseat Gary Glitter's Rock & Roll Parts 1 & 2 as the all-time great stadium anthem. It's a get-up, stand-up, stomp-your-feet, power chord classic that has me bouncing off the walls every time I hear it.
Free Energy's Stuck on Nothing has me stuck on Free Energy. Try it; I think you'll like it. Here's a video of Bang Pop. Enjoy.