Gladhands – La Di Da (1997)
purchase this album (Amazon)

Given that this album is nearly ten years old, and that the pool of worthwhile power pop bands has never been terribly large, odds are that anybody who’s into the Cheap Trick/Big Star type stuff that Gladhands did is already either aware or in possession of La Di Da — but still. It’s out of print (in fact, the whole frigging label went out of business), so for our purposes today, it’s officially a Cutout Gone Wild!.

Now, if you are into this type of music, and you somehow managed to miss out on Gladhands while the band was around, then you’re in for a major treat. They had it all — the hooks, the smarts, the looks — and their failure to connect with an audience is, just like I say in this spot every Thursday, an inexplicable mystery of the modern pop marketplace. Before I sat down to write this entry, I hadn’t listened to La Di Da in close to ten years, but I could easily have sung along to every track. You want sticky pop hooks? The Gladhands had ‘em in spades.

Sadly, the group lasted only one more album before calling it quits in 1999. Even sadder, neither of the band’s principal songwriters seem to be doing anything music-related today. It’s a crying shame, I’m telling you.

But hey, the music lives on, right? And if my geeky enthusiasm hasn’t been enough to convince you that you need your own copy of La Di Da, it’s cool — I’ve got the first half of the record right here for you. Voila — “Kill’em With Kindness” (download), “Smallsville” (download), the title track (download), the stone classic “Gore Girls (Gimme More)” (download), “House of Mirrors” (download), and “Rebound” (download).

Now go. Go and float on the summery power pop breeze that these songs have to offer. Go and buy the CD on Amazon. And meet me back here next week, when I believe I’ll dig something a little less…noteworthy out of the stacks.