THE SEMANTICS Powerbill (1993/1996)

Powerbill (1993/1996)
Will Owsley’s Lost Pop Classic

This one ranks right up there with The Grays’ outstanding Ro Sham Bo (HERE) as another essential pop album by a minor super group – made before anyone knew they were all so super. Originally recorded in 1993, the album was inexplicably shelved by Geffen records, and the band split up. The album would eventually surface in 1996, but only as a limited edition Japanese import, and its been highly sought after ever since. Alongside the late, great Owsley was co-writer Millard Powers, who later re-joined original Semantics drummer Ben Folds (replaced for this release by Ringo’s kid, Zak Starkey) before going solo himself. Both Powers and Owsley each recorded some of these Semantics songs for their respective debuts – “Coming Up Roses” and “The Sky Is Falling” is here and on Owsley’s outstanding, self-titled CD (HERE). Fans of The dB’s seminal album, The Sound Of Music (HERE), will surely appreciate. If you’re a purveyor of power pop, Powerbill should quickly become one of your own listening essentials in record time. This one is surprisingly affordable at Amazon, HERE.

Sticks And Stones (3:03)
Future For You (2:53)
Coming Up Roses (3:37)
Jenny Won’t Play Fair (2:39)
Average American (3:24)
Don’t Say Goodbye (4:13)
The Sky Is Falling (2:59)
Black And Blue (3:10)
Johnny Come Lately (3:07)
Life Goes On (3:02)
Glasses And Braces (3:24)


  • Capt. Willard
    May 7, 2010 - 19:58 | Permalink

    Search HERE

  • Gyro1966
    July 27, 2013 - 11:30 | Permalink

    Thanks Willard for an always interesting blog.

  • Don from Oregon
    July 27, 2013 - 12:40 | Permalink

    Thanks Willard! This looks great!

  • Newman
    July 27, 2013 - 15:19 | Permalink

    Very nice, I had never heard these guys. Good stuff!

  • Newman
    July 28, 2013 - 17:04 | Permalink

    I have listened to this LP seven or eight times now since I downloaded it yesterday. Holy God! This is one of the best examples of Power Pop I have heard in quite a while. I burned it to disc yesterday morning then went on a mini road trip. It was the only thing I listened to. I think I am ready to proclaim this LP quite possibly better than Grays RSB. Love Owsley anyway, Zach is an outstanding drummer very easy to listen to. Thank You again and again.

    • Willard
      July 28, 2013 - 17:10 | Permalink

      Cool.. glad you’re diggin’ it. I’ve got some Semantics demos coming up and another pop great from band member Millard Powers you’ll probably like, too. Many thanks.

  • July 29, 2013 - 10:45 | Permalink

    Ah, you’ve unearthed another lost gem here Willard. One day, you will be hailed as the Margaret Mead of rock & roll.

  • July 29, 2013 - 10:53 | Permalink

    Yes, please. Looking for anything Owsley was on and looking forward to learning more about Powers.

  • August 2, 2013 - 09:31 | Permalink

    This is wild. I just rediscovered my copy of Owsley’s self-titled CD that I bought back in college, then I saw these Semantics posts. I knew he was a session musician but didn’t realize he had a band. Thanks!

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