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Pathetic History 1990​-​2000

by Chris Richards

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    Includes unlimited streaming via the free Bandcamp app, plus high-quality download in MP3, FLAC and more.

    Pathetic History 1990-2000- The first in a series of collections featuring the works of Chris Richards. This volume features recordings by Hippodrome (late 80's band), The Pantookas (mid 90's), The Phenomenal Cats and solo recordings by Chris Richards.
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  • Compact Disc (CD) + Digital Album

    Includes unlimited streaming of Pathetic History 1990-2000 via the free Bandcamp app, plus high-quality download in MP3, FLAC and more.
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  • Full Digital Discography

    Get all 12 Chris Richards and the Subtractions releases available on Bandcamp and save 25%.

    Includes unlimited streaming via the free Bandcamp app, plus high-quality downloads of Peaks and Valleys, 3peat - That Covers That (3), A Smattering Of Mystery And Sound, That Covers That 2- Electric Boogaloo, That Covers That - Vol 1 - deluxe edition, Get Yer La La's Out - Deluxe Edition, Dogbunny & Dogbunnies (Special Edition), Historia Pathetic Dos, and 4 more. , and , .

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Power pop is about hooks. And power. Not to mention a little bit of soul. For all of his ten-year musical career captured on this record, Chris Richards has been laying down powerful hook after hook with as much soul as a suburban kid from MI could be expected to have. Richards is a power pop classicist: Beatlesque melodies, Raspberries-style guitar crunch, heartfelt lyrics about love lost and found, and beautiful vocal harmony. You can file him right alongside other modern pop classicists like Matthew Sweet or Velvet Crush or Mayflies USA and feel good about it. Pathetic History covers songs by three different bands Richards formed and throws in a few solo tracks as well. Hippodrome, from the early '90s, is represented by two tracks. They are pretty straightforward rockers with lots of guitar. The three solo tracks from the mid-'90s are in much the same vein with a poppier feeling and a fuller sound. Nice, but what really makes this CD the gem it is are the tracks by Richards' bands from the late '90s, The Phenomenal Cats (cool Kinks reference) and the Pantookas. Richards began to expand his sound, using piano to great effect and throwing in horns, strings, and more heavenly backing-vocal harmonies. Tracks like "Greatest Lullaby," with its rollicking piano and "Maybe I Need You," with its bongo and piano chorus, call to mind a modern day Left Banke. The Phenomenal Cats even cover the Left Banke's classic "I've Got Something on My Mind" and do quite a credible job. The two standout tracks are the Pantookas' "I Need a Heart," an electric piano-driven song built around what else but incredible vocal harmonies. By the time the second chorus rolls around, you'll be singing along. It's that catchy. "Holiday" is a solo demo from 2000 that Richards says is inspired by his love of Jason Falkner's music. The tight chord progressions and yearning vocals do bring Falkner to mind; it is a great little rock song. Chris Richards is an undiscovered talent. If you like classic pop music, power or otherwise, you should discover him. Simple as that.

4 1/2 stars All Music Guide


released June 20, 2001

Songs by various members of Hippodrome, the Pantookas, The Phenomenal Cats and Chris Richards


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Chris Richards and the Subtractions Detroit, Michigan

Veterans of the mid-west power pop scene, Chris Richards and The Subtractions, are back with their new record “Peaks and Valleys”, the highly anticipated follow-up to 2012’s “Get Yer La La’s Out”. The new record is the first with newly added Subtraction Andy Reed, who also is in The Legal Matters with Chris Richards along with longtime rhythm section consisting of Todd Holmes and Larry Grodsky. ... more

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