by Wheaton Hop

The Little EP That Could

Let’s face it, I’m a geriatric curmudgeon when it comes to my punk rock adulation. Admittedly, I usually find myself hesitant and skeptical when a brand new band shows up on my radar. But fuck, what is even the point if we aren’t open to expanding our horizons. I put out the call recently for releases to consider and, while some weren’t even actually physical releases, I do believe we have struck gold here.

Without further ado, I present to you: Pop Icons.

So brash, right? Brand yourself iconic before any credibility can be established. But, I gotta say… these guys have some chops and the (limited) output to back it up. This right here is your Punk Rock Manifest Destiny (look it up, Deml). We all have something to look forward to with this group. The future may be unwritten, according to Joe Strummer, but I have a feeling we’re in for a ride with this band.

It typically takes a few listens for me to appreciate something beyond “Meh.” but Pop Icons grabbed me from the get go and I didn’t want them to let me loose.

Pop Icons happen to be a fresh faced Phoenix, Arizona outfit that only had the chance to play out for 6 months before pandemic pandemonium took control and killed shows for us all. Luckily enough, they digitally released their 2020 EP, Prelude. I’m hoping the amount of times I have listened to this on Spotify has, at least, garnered them a hefty buck or two to share a tasty Dr Pepper or Slim Jim, for crying out loud.

If you fancy yourself a Copyrights fan or even early Dillinger Four fan, this is right up your alley. The entire release clocks out at under 13 minutes, but it is 13 minutes that will leave you wanting more. This is not their 13 minutes of fame, so to speak, because I have a feeling this band has the wherewithal to back that shit up.

Strap yourself in for an anthemic roar of rhythmic, hard-hitting energy with clever back and forth vocals, kickass guitars, and some tasty bass with some hard hitting drums and don’t be late to the show. This is where it’s at. I always tell people to never skip the opening acts. And these guys prove my point. Contrary to what the lead off track Prelude To A Broken Heart tells you, this ain’t gonna break your heart.

Essentially… I want more.

While this is a self released endeavor, any label looking for talent should not sleep on Pop Icons. They deserve attention, they deserve a physical release. Bassist Nate shared with me that, since lockdown, they have finally gotten back to rehearsing and that he, Rob, and Brandon have added a second guitarist, Agent M to the mix. We should anticipate a full length release before the end of 2021 as well as a split with their pals, Florida’s Secret World (who I have yet to check out but have slated for ear pleasure this weekend).

Go forth and discover, Dummies. This is what it’s all about. We need the energy and we need it now.



– Wheaton Hop