The jangly "Birthday Ruckus" could have easily been a Monkees tune, and "Field Trip," a long-time fan-favorite at live shows, gives a shout out to the indie band Game Theory. That song and "Always Mom," an homage to mothers everywhere, are a little reminiscent of the quirky, jazzy bands on Long Beach, California's SST label.
The brief, a cappella "Prelude to a Thing" precedes "Things You Want," a song that echoes the springy pop of Barenaked Ladies. A novice shutterbug's pride is expressed on the superb tune "My New Camera" ... hey, if you're programming a radio playlist or making a mix tape for a car trip, put this one somewhere amongst Rush's "The Camera Eye," Yes' "Into the Lens," and Paul Simon's "Kodachrome"!
"What's That Noise?" channels Buddy Holly, The Who, Elvis Costello, The Moody Blues, and Led Zeppelin, all in the span of two minutes, while telling the tale of a haunted house. Finally, kids' music genius Gunnar Madsen makes a guest appearance on the slightly funky title track, scatting like nobody's business, as Uquillas' admits "my scat is wack."
The seven kid-length songs on Goodie Bag (only one is over three minutes long) are a great introduction to The Hipwaders' sound: catchy and angular, fun and witty. Tito Uquillas' notes on the origins and backgrounds of each song can be found on his blog, as well as his reasoning behind releasing an EP rather than a full-length CD.
If you can get your hands on a hard copy of the CD, dig the original cover art by Brian Clarke, the bobblehead likenesses of the band, and the cool reproduction of a vinyl LP on the CD itself. Grab your Goodie Bag, folks, it's one of the best kids' albums of 2009 so far!
Released April 7, 2009; Hip Kid Music