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Mike G

Don't get started thinking Mike G is some kind of Beastie Boys rip-off artist. Like the Beasties' Mike D, he is a genre-bender from New York, but the similarities pretty much end there. He has more in common with early Beck, whose fuzzy lo-fi pop-funk definitely seems a reference point for the up-and-coming young solo artist. Mr. G (that "G" stands for Gagliardi) also delivers endearingly goofy sex-obsessed lyrics in a sort of sweet, sort of sleazy adolescent style that recalls the barely post-pubescent Jonathan Richman of the early Modern Lovers days.

Mike G's debut album, Sugar Daddy, took shape during the late '90s in the singer's Manhattan apartment over the course of many late drunken nights when, after returning from yet another night at an East Village club full of romantic longing and sweet pop melodies, he'd turn on his four-track and start recording. It's nothing profound, but refreshingly uncontrived, consistently comic and ironic, and eminently hummable.

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