Plimsouls PhotoAt a time when rock music was shifting gears, the Plimsouls threw British Invasion into the new wave mix and permanently altered the genre. Fun was the operative word, and bar bands everywhere joined the fray. But the Plimsouls were exceptional because they boasted the talents of singer/songwriter PeterCase.

The band formed in Los Angeles in 1978 and merged roots, retro and guitar rock with a ramshackle punk aesthetic. Case had already collaborated with Jack Lee and Paul Collins in the Nerves, who had some success in 1976 with the single "Hangin' on the Telephone," later recorded by Blondie. In 1978, Case met L.A. locals guitarist Eddie Munoz, drummer Lou Ramirez and bassist Dave Pahoa. After one EP, Zero Hour in 1980, and an album in 1981 that contained some stellar power-pop in songs like "Zero Hour" and "Hush, Hush," it looked like the band were a new wave one-off until a single from the soundtrack to Valley Girl, "A Million Miles Away," lifted them from new wave obscurity and cemented their reputation. The song remains a timeless classic. An album for Geffen, Everywhere At Once, followed in 1983 with a re-recorded version of the song, but ultimately, the liaison with the label was not a lasting one; the Plimsouls broke up shortly after its release. A testament to their strength as a live band was captured on One Night in America and released in 1988.

Case went on to record folk music for the label and remains a potent solo artist, while the rest of the band took on day jobs and various other musical projects. In 1995-96, the band, sans Ramirez, took a stab at re-forming and played a few reunion dates with former Blondie drummer Clem Burke, releasing the new studio LP Kool Trash in 1998. ~ John Dougan, All Music Guide