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The LA's - Lost Tunes

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Album Review

The La's were one of the few English alternative groups to keep traditional British guitar pop alive during the late '80s and early '90s. Drawing heavily from the punchy British Invasion sound of early Beatles, the Hollies, the Searchers, and the Small Faces, the group's eponymous debut is a swirling array of ringing guitar hooks and strong, undeniable pop melodies. Throughout the record, chief songwriter Lee Mavers turns out small, well-crafted gems, highlighted by the hit single "There She Goes," whose jangling hooks and sighing melodies simply scratch the surface of the abundance of pleasures on the record. While Mavers claimed at the time that the label forced him to release The La's, it's hard to imagine the record being any more infectious. As it stands, The La's was a refreshing slice of classicist guitar pop at the time of its release, and its charms have not faded over the years. [The 2001 British reissue includes five bonus tracks: "All by Myself," "Clean Prophet," "Knock Me Over," a live recording of "Over," and an alternate take of "I.O.U."]

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Formed: 1986 in Liverpool, Lancashire, England

Genre: Alternative

Years Active: '80s, '90s, '00s

When the La's released their debut album in 1990, it made immediate waves in the British pop scene, as well as American college radio. Drawing from the hook-laden, ringing guitars of mid-'60s British pop as well as the post-punk pop of the Smiths, the La's' self-titled first album had a timeless, classic feel. It seemed like effortless music, yet that was not the case. From their inception in 1986, lead singer/guitarist/songwriter...
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