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Allen Clapp

For more than a decade, indie pop torchbearer Allen Clapp has sought to revive and reinvent the classic "West Coast Sound of California" as established through the decades by the likes of The Beach Boys, The Free Design, and The Association. Clapp debuted his giddy neo-sunshine pop in the early '90s after playing with a couple of short-lived garage bands, releasing a handful of D.I.Y. recordings (including several collector's items on the great underground pop label Bus Stop) throughout the early part of the '90s before forming Allen Clapp and His Orchestra around 1995. A couple of years later that band transformed into The Orange Peels and has become one of the most highly regarded practitioners of California-styled power pop around.

Clapp's 2002 solo effort, Available Light, came about after he received a Rhodes piano as a gift. As he began experimenting with it, he was also becoming increasingly intrigued with the quirky soft rock superstar albums of the early '70s -- records along the lines of Elton John's Goodbye Yellow Brick Road and Todd Rundgren's Something/Anything?. So he set out to make a record of that ilk himself, playing every instrument on Available Light himself. With its layers of gentle keyboards and gushing synthesized strings alongside Clapp's emotive crooning, Available Light offers a strange sugary rush meant to be savored beneath a wide open California sky.

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