Album Reviews: Nothing Sadder Than Lonely Queen by From Bubblegum to SkyFrom Bubblegum to Sky is Mario Hernandez. It's a solo project masquerading as a pop band. But Nothing Sadder Than Lonely Queen is not a mopey acoustic singer/songwriter’s album. It’s just about the furthest thing from it. It’s actually some of the most upbeat pop music you’ll ever hear.
The From Bubblegum to Sky sound is a completely anachronistic throwback (or it is futuristic?) consisting of pop hooks, Motown beats, disco grooves, bouncing piano, horns, hand claps, electric guitars, and a somewhat asexual, wispy, nasally-throated voice. Every band that has pop sensibilities gets compared to The Beatles (rightly so). But songs like “Vampire” and “Bombing at the Midnight Showing” are prime examples of the influence of glam rock pioneers, T.Rex. If you can imagine Marc Bolan (of T.Rex) as the lead singer of the The Bee Gees (or even as one of the The Ronettes), you might be getting close to the sound of this album. The opening track, “Operation Big Beat,” is the most infectious song of the year. I challenge anyone to refrain from toe-tapping to this one.
Music like this is barely classifiable in today’s musical landscape. But it should be easy. It’s pure pop in the broadest and purest sense of the word. It’s The Supremes and it’s The Beach Boys. It’s T.Rex’s dreamy glam rock and what The Smashing Pumpkins may have sounded like had they overcome their angst earlier in their careers. - Doug Kamin
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