As long as multi-instrumentalist Allie Hanlon could remember, she had wanted to expand her music endeavors.
She started off her career playing drums for The White Wires, which inspired her to start writing songs and recording herself in her bedroom. These sessions evolved into Peach Kelli Pop, named after a song by Hawthorne natives Redd Kross, whom Hanlon was a big fan of.
After releasing her first album Peach Kelli Pop I under Canadian label Going Gaga Records in 2010, Hanlon packed up her belongings and moved from Ottawa to Los Angeles to be with someone she was dating at the time. Los Angeles was very different from her hometown. The city was fast paced and she was overwhelmed but found success for Peach Kelli Pop with Burger Records. She released Peach Kelli Pop II in 2012 and continued her “power pop” sound.
With rising success, Hanlon struggled with Peach Kelli Pop being labeled a “girl band.” (She often times was accompanied at shows by various female friend musicians).
“It is cool and important to have women on stage and there were definitely pros and cons to being called a ‘girl group,’” Hanlon says. “People just became interested in our band because it was filled with girls. I want people to focus on the music and the lyrics. Luckily, our audience has grown with us and the members aren’t the main focus anymore.”
Over the past 10 years, Hanlon’s taste and interest have changed. Her songs are inspired by a lot of melodies and pop choruses from the 1950s and ’60s as well as the punk era. To this day, many of Hanlon’s lyrics focus on things she is interested in, which are mainly things that are in her life.
“A lot of my songs are about superficial parts of pop culture,” she explains. “My interests in things like Sailor Moon, Super Mario and other stuff just naturally comes out in my music.”
Some of her songs even reference some of the pit bulls she fosters. When she isn’t working on music, Hanlon has found a really good rescue, Angel City Pit Bulls, that specializes in working with the often-maligned breed.
“I love all dogs but there is an obvious problem in places like LA where there is less help and support for pit bulls,” she says.
Hanlon tries not to get attached to these dogs since they are only in her care for a few days. One of the few times she does get personal in her lyric writing is on the album Gentle Leader with the song “King Size,” which is about a dog named Bubba that she did get attached to.
Besides fostering pit bulls, Hanlon is pretty active with her side project Blink 183, which is a blink-182 cover band. She was talking with Barry Johnson of Joyce Manor and Rachel Levy from the band of the same name about the recent blink-182/ Lil Wayne tour. The trio realized that Hanlon can reach the same high-pitched, nasal vocals as blink’s Tom DeLonge while Levy can sing with Mark Hoppus undertones.
Johnson was so excited, he pushed the group to make this a real project. They brought their friend Nicole Snyder on to drum while Hanlon focused on singing and playing rhythm guitar. The group played their first show at The Hi Hat in LA this past August. They covered popular blink-182 songs such as “I Miss You,” which so impressed Hoppus that he tweeted at Blink 183 to have another show once he is in town so he can cover his own songs with them.
Peach Kelli Pop are in the studio right now recording a new four-song, 7 inch. Hanlon plans to record a new full length album this winter with Mint Records. Although there are no plans to tour at the moment, PKP are performing an upcoming set in Fullerton. Hanlon hopes to play some new songs from their upcoming album and–who knows?– we may see her revive the Sailor Moon costume once again!
Peach Kelli Pop plays with The Pats Pats at Programme Skate and Sound, 2495 E. Chapman Ave., Fullerton, (714) 798-7565. Sun., 8 p.m. $8.