From 1978 to 1981, the Titan label issued just eight records, but over the years their tiny catalog has crawled to the top of power-pop want lists worldwide and appeared on scads of homemade tapes, building a legacy to rival L.A.’s Bomp! or New York’s Ork. Cut off in fly-over country, Titan fostered a scene of its own, imported its own skinny ties, and scoured the Missouri valley for its own talent. The label’s Midwest AM bubblegum roots are apparent in the likes of Gary Charlson, the Secrets*, Arlis!, Gems, Millionaire At Midnight, the Boys, J.P. McClain & the Intruders, Bobby Sky, and Scott McCarl, but Titan’s acts took cues from Stiff too, along with the glam-punk spit being hocked off the 100 Club stage.
Thirty years since it meekly flopped out its first 7” single, Kansas City’s Titan Records finally finds a home in record bins everywhere with this deluxe 42-song double CD or 51-song quadruple LP box. While the CD package runs like a kick-ass mix tape with a 40-page booklet, for vinyl we’ve dissected the bands and songs, giving the Boys their own LP, let the Secrets* and Arlis! split an LP, Gary Charlson and Gems split another, and created Teen Titans, a prequel to Just Another Pop Album, which gathers all the remaining loose ends. All four LPs and the perfect-bound 12” x 12” book slide into a sturdy slipcase, putting a bolded exclamation point at the end of Titan’s first-class run.