Back in 2001 a movie came out called Josie and the Pussycats about a pop punk band trying to make it big in the music business. The music they played was hooky, upbeat and sugar sweet without a hint of rock 'n' roll danger. I haven't thought of that movie or the music in years . . . until I listened to the debut album from Jemina Pearl.
That may sound like a cheap shot, but it isn't intended to be. This music is more pop than punk, with a touch of surf in a couple tracks. If the band that Jemina and her songwriting partner John Eatherly have put together can deliver, it's probably a gas as a live set. The record boasts guest appearances from heavyweights like Iggy Pop and Sonic Youth's Thurston Moore, so clearly they must know the right people.
Like Josie and the Pussycats, Break It Up could be a guilty pleasure. The melodies are catchy and will stick in your head, even if there isn't much variation from song to song. There's nothing new here, and it's unlikely that a bonus collector's edition will be reissued in 20 years, but not every record needs to be the White Album, for chrissakes.
Jemina Pearl plays the Palace Sunday, Oct. 18, at 7 PM with Islands and Toro Y Moi. $8.