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On a couple of their major-label debut’s tunes—“Just Broke Up” and “Need You Around”—Chicago’s Smoking Popes sound alarmingly like the Ramones fronted by Morrissey. Happily, the similarity doesn’t last: The real point of reference for Josh Caterer’s croony singing is Eric Carmen or, more precisely, all the imitators who appeared in the Raspberries’ wake and were immortalized on Rhino’s 1993 DIY: Come Out and Play—American Power Pop I, which the Popes have plainly been ransacking for inspiration. To be fair, the Popes are better than Pezband, Piper, and the Scruffs. Part of the reason the power-pop bands of the mid-’70s remained obscure was that the innocent romanticism they tried to project was transparently fake, usually lapsing into the crude misogyny the Knack capitalized on a couple of years later. Caterer’s heart really is on his sleeve, and songs like “Rubella,” “Gotta Know Right Now,” and “Mrs. You and Me” (a marriage proposal!) are truly disarming. The Popes have nothing new to say and a style that is 100 percent derivative, but catchy songs in the right derivative style can take you far (cf. Green Day).