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1977

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Album Review

Two-thirds of Ash were born in 1977, which means that their latter-day punk-pop isn't very Catholic. Instead of sticking to the rigid rules of American punk-pop — which means you can't stretch the song past three minutes — Ash take a cinematic approach to their songs, throwing in elements of power pop, glam, post-Nirvana grunge, and post-Oasis rock. It's a melting pot of pop styles, basically because the members of the band are so young, they haven't conformed to the standards of the indie and punk subcultures. Sure, Ash still use loud guitars — they're all over 1977 — but they create a distinctive, melodic, and energetic sound that's equal parts heavy grunge and light pop. And while they may indulge in jamming a bit too much, they remain a pop band at heart, capable of turning out epic guitar pop like "Goldfinger," punk-pop like "Kung Fu," and the lovely but loud "Girl from Mars" with equal flair.

Biography

Formed: 1992 in Downpatrick, Northern Ireland

Genre: Rock

Years Active: '90s, '00s, '10s

The Northern Irish punk-pop trio Ash were tentatively formed in 1989, when childhood mates Tim Wheeler and Mark Hamilton received guitars for Christmas and established a metal act named Vietnam. Following a handful of shows, Vietnam adopted the Ash moniker in 1992 and added Rick "Rock" McMurray on drums. The musicians shared a love for the raw British punk of the Buzzcocks and crafted their musical talents to take the Brit-pop scene by storm at the start of...
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1977, Ash
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