Snowball II | Flashes of Quincy (Independent/Doughnut)

Flashes of Quincy is a white-hot grease fire of pure entertainment.

Releasing three albums in 12 months is usually too many, unless you’re Ryan Adams. But that’s what Snowball II (a name that’s witty at first, but that seems less funny each time you hear it) set out to do. With Flashes of Quincy, the Long Beach group delivers record three of three, an energetic, filler-free slab of shoegaze-infused power pop. It’s a marked departure from the previous albums’ focuses on indie folk and scruffy psych rock.

“Anais & Me” bursts right out of the gates, driven by the roar of one of those guitars that are, like, double guitars. It’s the sound of Teenage Fanclub getting biz-zay, consistently and thoroughly, with the stratospheric splendor of the Catherine Wheel. Elsewhere, “CR-VUC” channels forgotten U.K. shoegaze weirdo heroes Inspiral Carpets, with a whiff of 1970s boogie rock that smells like Otto’s jacket.

Album standout “Resident of the United States” shimmers with the power-pop stomp of the Motor City’s late, great Waxwings, while “I Exist” brings to mind the towering, space-born sounds of Champaign, Illinois’ finest Hum.

“Appositive Stream” is a happy daydream of the Strokes doing a guest spot on ’That 70s Show, while the ringing “Groan’s” is tailor made for people who prefer to listen to Cheap Trick. “Meet Yr Dad” skulks along on fat, bong-rattling bass chords before breaking loose into wiry DIY indie that recalls the Pavement-infused Britpop of Blur’s 1997 self-titled album.

Flashes of Quincy is a white-hot grease fire of pure entertainment, well worth your time in a world where it’s increasingly difficult to find half an hour a week in which to get funky. Goodnight; Springton; there will be no encores. B+ | Mike Rengel

RIYL: Catherine Wheel; Waxwings; Big Star; Simpsons references.

(Hey, Snowball II, I actually love your name. I couldn’t resist the opening reference.)

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