Julie Ocean take their name from the Undertones song and definitely have an UK sensibility about them. Luckily (for me at least) these gents are old enough that their touchstones are older than Oasis. I don't think I can stomach another American band wallowing in affected Gallagher-isms. long gone and nearly there is chock full of hooks and guitars like Teenage Fanclub and GbV having a mutual backslapping session at Mac McCaughan's place. I’m not sure who's taking the leads on this record, but both parties get props for being tasty as hell, driving and chiming with equal power, but never resorting to full-on wankery.
As anglo-philic as the chiming guitars and sunny harmonies are here, Julie Ocean definitely tip their hats to their indie rock pasts, especially on Looking At Me/Looking At You where the boys bring some stateside pride through a little Husker Du homage. It's a great song that closes the record nicely and leaves you wanting for more. There are about a million other bands who could take the hint on that. While the whole record clocks in under a half-hour, there is not a bad song in the ten that comprise long gone and nearly there. I’m not sure whether the title is meant to be taken literally, but it’s certainly apt for Julie Ocean. Whatever has kept these gents from the scene had given them time to write ten of the best guitar-driven pop songs that I've heard in a long time.
Julie Ocean are out on the road next month with Magnetic Morning. It's great for them and they certainly deserve the slot, but I really don't want to have to run the double gauntlet of bitter old Swervedriver fans and new school Interpol trendoids, in Brooklyn, no less. My personal issues aside, they are at Southpaw on 10/21 with MM and Springhouse, which I'm pretty sure is Jack Rabid from The Big Takeover's band. Should be a good night, or at the very least a reason to go home early. The records $10 postage paid from Transit of Venus. If I master simple computer skills, you may be able to buy it by clicking here, if not, check the links below.