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Heavenly



Heavenly emerged in 1989 from the rubble of the celebrated late-80's twee-punk outfit Talulah Gosh, retaining that band's exuberant Ramones-meet-the-Ronettes energy while moving in a more thoughtful, grown-up direction. During the course of their existence, Heavenly inspired a fanatical following, and for good reason: the music they created was pop in its most evolved form. Between Peter Momtchiloff''s guitar jangle, Cathy Rogers' sweet, slightly psychedelic keyboard wanderings and backup vocals, Matthew Fletcher's buoyant drumming, Rob Pursey's bass, and Amelia Fletcher's rhythm guitar and cheerful, gently accented vocals, this band created something both fleeting and timeless. While their bubbly lighter-than-air effervescence made Heavenly seem decidedly well-named, something very gritty and real beneath the pleasing melodies made them very much of-this-earth, and kept the music relevant.

The delicately buoyant "Shallow" appears on Heavenly's very first album, 1990's Heavenly Vs. Satan. It's a gorgeous document of high-octane jangle which represents the transition from Talulah Gosh's toothier sound to Heavenly's signature crashpop. Heavenly Vs. Satan was first released by the legendary Sarah Records but went out of print by 1997. Thankfully, Olympia's K Records, the official keepers of the Heavenly flame, reissued the landmark album along with six extra tracks culled from out-of-print singles and new liner notes by Lois Maffeo.

The dreamy "Space Manatee" comes from 1996's Operation Heavenly, the band's final full-length, which is dedicated to drummer and principal songwriter Matthew Fletcher, who took his life shortly before the record's release. In the wake of the tragedy, Heavenly immediately disbanded, but its members have continued on in the equally delightful Marine Research.