The Imperial Sound

THE IMPERIAL SOUND is a swinging pop band with roots in 1970's AM radio, Chicago soul, and first-rate song craft. Kenn Goodman (keyboards) and Rick Mosher (guitars and vocals) have been partners in a variety of musical ventures, from the Chicago-based Pravda Records store and label to the legendary trash-rock trio The New Duncan Imperials, for many years. Their latest incarnation, as the founders of The Imperial Sound (sometimes shortened to ImpSo by its fans), puts them at the center of a group of seasoned musicians with years of experience and a drive for self-reinvention. 

The band’s debut full-length album was recorded with Mike Hagler at Kingsize Sound Labs (Wilco’s Summerteeth and Mermaid Avenue discs, Neko Case, Mekons, Waco Brothers) and mixed by John “Strawberry” Fields (everyone from Miley Cyrus and Demi Lovato to the Dollyrots). The twelve songs on the Imperial Sound's debut forge an immediately identifiable sound and style: songs bristling with pop hooks, taut arrangements driven by an all-star horn section, heavenly harmonies courtesy of a who's-who in Chicago pop. Guests on the album include Peter Himmelman, Poi Dog Pondering's Dag Juhlin, Singing legends Kelly Hogan and Nora O'Conner, and Kathy Ruestow.

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The New AM

The Imperial Sound

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At the heart of The New AM, the immensely appealing debut from The Imperial Sound, is the band’s mastery of the classic pop hook. Primary songwriter Rick Mosher references everyone from Todd Rundgren and Carole King to Elvis Costello and The Replacements, and the result is an impressively consistent album of perfect pop moments. Years of shared experience in studios and on stages have sharpened the Imperial Sound’s instincts, and their arrangements have an easy power that is only earned over time. As accomplished as the band is, they are never afraid to let their Midwestern roots show. An Imperial Sound song is like a semi-polished gem – beautiful, but unpretentious and still a bit rough around the edges. The best of them, like “Yesterday,” “Daylight,” and “A Man Like You” are both sophisticated and endearingly straightforward. It’s no surprise that a who’s who of Chicago rock and pop talent lined up to sing on this project: Kathy Ruestow, Dag Juhlin, Kelly Hogan, Nora O’Connor, Bobby Cornelius, and Peter Himmelman all lend their voices to the album. Listen to the slashing power chords of “Get Along” or the major-league horn hooks of “I Feel Strange,” and you’ll realize that you’re in the company of a band that understands the power and the beauty of a truly great pop song.

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    A Man Like You

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