Dressy Bessy, Pink Hearts Yellow Moons (1999)

Denver's Dressy Bessy are another band in the loose Elephant 6 collective (guitarist and husband of frontwoman Tammy Ealon, John Hill, is also guitarist for the Apples in Stereo).  And of all these bands, Dressy Bessy is perhaps the most perky and most pure, unadulterated fun -- unabashed bubblegum that owes more to the Archies and Josie & The Pussycats (and maybe Shonen Knife) than the Beatles/Beach Boys vibe that drives some of their peers.

The band's 1999 debut, Pink Hearts Yellow Moons, was the clearest distillation of Ealon's chipper pop songs, simple rockers with no pretense of higher art -- just a quick, 30-minute blast of shiny happy indie pop, with nary a spare moment for a bridge or guitar solo.

The album is sugar-coated ear candy all the way through, but standout tracks include "Lookaround," "Jenny Come On," "If You Should Try To Kiss Her," "My Maryanne," and "You Stand Here," all of which are smile-inducing nuggets of chirpy joy, conveying an image of hanging out with Tammy after junior high lets out for the day, baking cookies and giggling like crazy.

The band has continued a steady output (with a brief sabbatical) of catchy albums (up to this year's recent release Fast Faster Disaster); their sound has grown a little heavier and less bubblegum over time, but retains its simple pop joys.

Here's an amateur video someone put together for "If You Should Try To Kiss Her."  Smile!
...and a live take on the album's "Just Like Henry":