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The Allies

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Album Review

While thinking about all the notable rock bands/artists that Washington has spawned over the years, genres such as psychedelic rock (Jimi Hendrix), arena rock (Heart), grunge (Nirvana), and even heavy metal (Queensrÿche) are all well represented. But what about power pop? Although they're not as widely renowned a name as the aforementioned acts, the region did in fact spawn a power pop act in the early '80s that was as strong as any of the other skinny tie/headband-wearing groups at the time — the Allies. Comparable to the likes of the Shoes and 20/20, the Allies seemed destined for greatness, but at the time, record label heads weren't exactly flocking to Seattle to sign bands — in the same way the would have if the band hailed from say, New York City or Los Angeles. Despite no major-label takers, the group issued a lone album in 1982, Allies, via their own label. And while local radio and even MTV got behind the leadoff track, "Emma Peel," this would prove to be the group's one and only full-length before calling it quits in 1985. Fourteen years after their split, the Allies' leader, Dave Kincaid, reissued the album via his Haunted Field Music label, and listening to it all these years later, there's really no reason why the group shouldn't have followed other similarly styled acts up the charts. This is especially evident on the aforementioned "Emma Peel" (arguably the best thing the Allies did), as well as the Tommy Tutone-ish "Keep Your Eyes on Your Heart," the Records-esque "Hide in the City," and the slashing guitar-based "The Fanatic Rag." Hopefully, this reissue will bring some much-deserved attention to one of the more overlooked bands of the early-'80s power pop era.

Biography

Formed: 1979

Genre: Rock

Years Active: '70s, '80s

The Allies were one of the first Seattle bands to have a video on MTV. The group won one of MTV's Basement Tapes contests, and the clip for "Emma Peel," a lovelorn homage to Diana Rigg's character on The Avengers TV series, gave the band fleeting national recognition. The Allies were formed in 1979 with Steve Adamek (vocals, rhythm guitar, piano), Dave Kincaid (vocals, lead guitar, bass), and Larry Mason (drums). Kincaid co-wrote "Emma Peel" with songwriter Carl Funk, who would eventually contribute...
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The Allies, The Allies
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