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Freak City Soundtrack

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Album Review

If anyone knows power pop, it's Mike Chapman. Having produced everyone from Blondie and the Knack to Sweet and Scandal, Chapman is an undisputed master when it comes to uniting guitar-powered rock aggression and pop infectiousness. Chapman did exactly that when he produced Material Issue's third album, the superb Freak City Soundtrack. From "Ordinary Girl" and "Funny Feeling" to the clever single "Kim the Waitress," Chapman brings out the best in the melodic yet hard-rockin' band. Issue never fails to rock any more than it fails to employ irresistible hooks and a striking harmonic sense. One can pinpoint a variety of influences from the 1960s and '70s — Cheap Trick, Sweet, and Thin Lizzy as well as the Byrds and the Beatles — but there's no question that Material Issue was a fine band in its own right. Sadly, this CD wasn't the big commercial breakthrough Issue's followers were hoping it would be.

Customer Reviews

Freak City Soundtrack

One of my favorite Cheap Trick records! If you love them, you'll love this. And, by the way, that's Rick Neilsen of Cheap Trick doing a fine solo on Very Good Thing. So many good songs on here, Kim The Waitress, Going Through My Head....they're all good.

Freak City Soundtrack by Material Issue

This is an excellent album, probably their best out of the three. Their first album (International Pop Overthrow) has some great songs on it, but half the songs just seemed like filler. This album rocks harder, and there isn't one single song that I wouldn't put on my ipod. Highly recommended.

Other review is almost completely wrong.

This album is a bunch of re-recordings of older songs (Eko Beach, Going Thru My Head, Very Good Thing, etc.) & a cover (Kim the Waitress). I still love it, but International Pop Overthrow is a masterpiece!


Formed: 1986 in Chicago, IL

Genre: Pop

Years Active: '80s, '90s

Chicago power pop trio Material Issue married the tight and melodic commercial appeal of acts like Cheap Trick and the Knack with the jangly guitars and cockiness of early-'90s Britpop. Formed in the late '80s as a songwriting vehicle for guitarist/lead singer Jim Ellison, the band included bassist Ted Ansani and drummer Mike Zelenko. In 1987, after doing time in and around the Windy City club scene, the group released an eponymous EP that resulted in a contract with Mercury Records. Their major-label...
Full Bio
Freak City Soundtrack, Material Issue
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Customer Ratings


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