• Speedies
  • You Need Pop ((online)) 2005 

The Speedies weren’t a Trouser Press house band, but the precocious kids’ connections to the magazine in the late ’70s were many. One of the power poppers – then attending my high school alma mater — interned at our tiny Times Square office. The quintet was managed by a member of the TP staff; another produced their 1979 debut single, “Let Me Take Your Foto.” I wrote their bio. The Speedies were a huge local phenom (their popularity with teenaged girls was something to behold, as was the customary cereal-throwing at their shows) who — like such other great New York new wave bands of the ’70s as the Planets, Marbles, Mumps and Miamis – ended their existence without being documented on album. They’ve since grown up to become extraordinarily accomplished in various fields – rhythm guitarist Greg (“Greg Zap”) Crewdson is an internationally renowned art photographer and Yale professor, lead guitarist Eric (“Eric Pop”) Hoffert helped create Apple’s QuickTime software, drummer Allen (“Allen Zane”) Hurkin-Torres is a State Supreme Court judge in New York and bassist John (“John Carl”) Carlucci works on the business side of Warner Bros. (That leaves singer John Marino, who lives and sings in Las Vegas.)

You Need Pop includes the gimmicky prophetic fun of “Let Me Take Your Foto” (used, in 2005, in commercials for an HP printer) in its original form and a funny new mix as well as eight other slices of dated but entertaining pop, surging with on energy, substantial talent and adolescent strut but not straying far from home: “Avid Fan,” “Math Teacher,” “Urban Mania,” “You Need Pop.” (But not “We Wanna Be Your Breakfast Cereal”…) Clem Burke of Blondie produced two of these songs (“Time” and “Something on My Mind”), which were originally issued on a 1981 single.

[Ira Robbins]