Rich Kid Express Remembers "Bubblegum Radio"

Updated on May 24, 2020
FatFreddysCat profile image

I've been an obsessed hard rock/heavy metal fan and collector since the early 1980s. If it's got a good guitar riff and attitude, I'm in.

"Bubblegum Radio" EP cover
"Bubblegum Radio" EP cover | Source

Rich Kid Express - "Bubblegum Radio EP"

Label: Squib Kick Records, 2020

Country: USA

Genre: Hard Rock/Power Pop

Tracks: 5

Run Time: 17:59

All Aboard

Rich Kid Express (stylized as "Expre$$," apparently) is a new retro-flavored hard rock band comin' straight outta Advance, North Carolina. Their debut EP, with the intriguing title of Bubblegum Radio, was released in February 2020... actually, a quick scan of the promotional info that accompanied these five tracks reveals that "band" isn't exactly the right term to describe this project. As it turns out, Rich Kid Express is the creation of one person—Squib Kick Records honcho Rob Richardson, who started RKE as a vehicle to "bring back the vintage vibe of hard rock" that he loved in his youth.

Rob sings and performs all the instruments on Bubblegum Express and the EP's promo pack says that "you'll know exactly what to expect [from these tunes] if you were a teenager in the '70s and '80s... and liked Glam Rock and Headbanger's Ball."

As a former '80s kid, who fondly remembers the golden eras of hair metal and the Headbangers Ball, I'm obviously the target demographic that Rob is aiming for with RKE. So let's press "play" and see what's happenin' on Bubblegum Radio!

"You Went Too Far"

The Songs

Bubblegum Radio kicks off with the hard rockin' "You Went Too Far," a straight-ahead hair-metal track whose main riff recalls Kingdom Come's "Do You Like It?" The guitar solo is impressive and Richardson's laid-back but authoritative lead vocal style recalls Ace Frehley, Robin (Cheap Trick) Zander, or Rex (X-Sinner) Scott. I was already air-guitaring along with this song on the very first spin and thinking "we're off to a good start!"

"The Way She Rolls" will certainly not win any awards for lyrical originality ("I like the way she rocks, but I love the way she rolls!"), but it's a fun, slick '80s hard rock track wrapped around a burly bass line and more impressive guitar work.

"Bubblegum Radio" is obviously the track on this EP that's nearest and dearest to Richardson's heart. It instantly recalls the '70s likes of the Sweet, Slade or T-Rex with its march-along drum rhythms and hand-claps, and the lyrics recall the joy that kids of the '70s felt when they heard songs like "Ballroom Blitz" on the radio. When Richardson laments, "I miss those lipstick and leather days," I'm sure more than a few listeners will nod their heads in agreement and say, "me too, pal!"

"Just a Dog" is a sturdy slice of melodic AOR with more than a hint of Pyromania-era Def Leppard flavor, and the EP comes to a close with the chunky, catchy "Steamroller," another solid hard-rock track with a raunchy feel and a suitably sinister chorus.

"Bubblegum Radio"

But Wait, There's More!

Rich Kid Express followed up the release of Bubblegum Express with an additional digital single in April of 2020: a cover of the Ohio Express' bubblegum-pop essential from 1968, "Yummy Yummy Yummy." I'll be honest, I've never cared much for this particular song (I was always more of an Archies' "Sugar Sugar" kind of kid) but I'll grant that RKE does this golden oldie justice, and it serves as a nice "bonus track" to the EP.

"Yummy Yummy Yummy" (Ohio Express cover)

Summing It Up

I've reviewed my fair share of one-man (or two-man) projects for this fine site over the years, and I'm always impressed by (and perhaps slightly envious of) people who can not only sing, but play multiple musical instruments, and do it all well. Meanwhile, I'm a schmuck who's lucky if I can walk and chew gum at the same time. (haha!)

If you're interested in climbing on board the Rich Kid Express, you can find out more info and check out the tunes from Bubblegum Radio at their Bandcamp page. You can also visit Squib Kick Records' official Facebook page, which is also home to several other retro-rock acts that sound intriguing, like Atomic Lip Bomb and The Bad Something. Looks like I've got some more listening to do.

I really enjoyed this "rookie card" release and recommend it to fans of classic '70s and '80s hard rock. This style of music may have been driven underground, but it will never die as long as there are dedicated players like the Rich Kid Express out there keeping it alive!

© 2020 Keith Abt


    0 of 8192 characters used
    Post Comment

    No comments yet.


    This website uses cookies

    As a user in the EEA, your approval is needed on a few things. To provide a better website experience, uses cookies (and other similar technologies) and may collect, process, and share personal data. Please choose which areas of our service you consent to our doing so.

    For more information on managing or withdrawing consents and how we handle data, visit our Privacy Policy at:

    Show Details
    HubPages Device IDThis is used to identify particular browsers or devices when the access the service, and is used for security reasons.
    LoginThis is necessary to sign in to the HubPages Service.
    Google RecaptchaThis is used to prevent bots and spam. (Privacy Policy)
    AkismetThis is used to detect comment spam. (Privacy Policy)
    HubPages Google AnalyticsThis is used to provide data on traffic to our website, all personally identifyable data is anonymized. (Privacy Policy)
    HubPages Traffic PixelThis is used to collect data on traffic to articles and other pages on our site. Unless you are signed in to a HubPages account, all personally identifiable information is anonymized.
    Amazon Web ServicesThis is a cloud services platform that we used to host our service. (Privacy Policy)
    CloudflareThis is a cloud CDN service that we use to efficiently deliver files required for our service to operate such as javascript, cascading style sheets, images, and videos. (Privacy Policy)
    Google Hosted LibrariesJavascript software libraries such as jQuery are loaded at endpoints on the or domains, for performance and efficiency reasons. (Privacy Policy)
    Google Custom SearchThis is feature allows you to search the site. (Privacy Policy)
    Google MapsSome articles have Google Maps embedded in them. (Privacy Policy)
    Google ChartsThis is used to display charts and graphs on articles and the author center. (Privacy Policy)
    Google AdSense Host APIThis service allows you to sign up for or associate a Google AdSense account with HubPages, so that you can earn money from ads on your articles. No data is shared unless you engage with this feature. (Privacy Policy)
    Google YouTubeSome articles have YouTube videos embedded in them. (Privacy Policy)
    VimeoSome articles have Vimeo videos embedded in them. (Privacy Policy)
    PaypalThis is used for a registered author who enrolls in the HubPages Earnings program and requests to be paid via PayPal. No data is shared with Paypal unless you engage with this feature. (Privacy Policy)
    Facebook LoginYou can use this to streamline signing up for, or signing in to your Hubpages account. No data is shared with Facebook unless you engage with this feature. (Privacy Policy)
    MavenThis supports the Maven widget and search functionality. (Privacy Policy)
    Google AdSenseThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Google DoubleClickGoogle provides ad serving technology and runs an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Index ExchangeThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    SovrnThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Facebook AdsThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Amazon Unified Ad MarketplaceThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    AppNexusThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    OpenxThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Rubicon ProjectThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    TripleLiftThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Say MediaWe partner with Say Media to deliver ad campaigns on our sites. (Privacy Policy)
    Remarketing PixelsWe may use remarketing pixels from advertising networks such as Google AdWords, Bing Ads, and Facebook in order to advertise the HubPages Service to people that have visited our sites.
    Conversion Tracking PixelsWe may use conversion tracking pixels from advertising networks such as Google AdWords, Bing Ads, and Facebook in order to identify when an advertisement has successfully resulted in the desired action, such as signing up for the HubPages Service or publishing an article on the HubPages Service.
    Author Google AnalyticsThis is used to provide traffic data and reports to the authors of articles on the HubPages Service. (Privacy Policy)
    ComscoreComScore is a media measurement and analytics company providing marketing data and analytics to enterprises, media and advertising agencies, and publishers. Non-consent will result in ComScore only processing obfuscated personal data. (Privacy Policy)
    Amazon Tracking PixelSome articles display amazon products as part of the Amazon Affiliate program, this pixel provides traffic statistics for those products (Privacy Policy)
    ClickscoThis is a data management platform studying reader behavior (Privacy Policy)