Some people save their debut for when they’re really good and ready. Like today’s artists – they’ve been treading the boards for years but are only just now getting around to slipping us a bona-fide long-playing album. But trust me, it’s been worth the wait.

Over the past few years David Woodard has produced a full album of material and then some. Thus far though he’s been more of an EP than LP kind of guy. Five EPs in fact. Now on Stupid Kid he stretches out a bit, presenting 12 tunes cast in a variety of power pop hues. Things start off strong with the magnificent title track “Stupid Kid,” a song for anyone whose teen self ever fantasized playing before adoring fans or just an adolescent crush. This song has new-wave throwback hit written all over it, a poppy rock delight in a solo Paul Collins or John Faye vein. “Literally Probably Maybe” keeps the 1980s guitar pop sheen shining brightly while “Right Through Me” takes this formula but adds a sweetness to the melody and vocal harmonies, courtesy the incomparable Lisa Mychols. If you really want to divine the magic behind what Woodard’s doing on this album just give a close listen to songs like “She Believes” and “More Than Happiness.”  They’re chock full of interesting melodic turns and creative vocal arrangements that allow them to really stand out. And then there’s the hooky guitar work. I love the guitar lick opening of “You’re Not Alone” but I’ll stay for the fabulous harmony vocals. With Stupid Kid David Woodard is all grown up and making power pop you really do want to hear.

Kelowna BC native Stephen Schijns (pronounced ‘Skines’) has been posting singles on Bandcamp for half a decade or so, whenever he cooked up something new. Now he’s gathered together some of those songs with a load of new material for his debut album Where Do We Go? The result is a jam-packed collection of melody-rich tunes, 18 in fact. Schijns’ style is a kind of everyman rock and roll, clearly informed by the sixties but with that smooth feel of the 1980s. Think Greg Kihn, Huey Lewis, Paul Collins, perhaps a splash of Jonathan Richman – that sort of thing. But what stands out here is the range and quality of song-writing, from the rollicking, freewheeling 1980s radio vibe of “What? Why?” and “MAP” to the sixties-infused “Friday Saturday Sunday O’ Clock” and “Round We Go,” the latter clearly an homage to those early 1960s dance numbers, complete with honking sax. There’s even a fun beach guitar workout on “Trans-Pacific Beach Bum.” But Schijns can also shift the mood dramatically with cuts like “1000 Miles From Nowhere” and “Take Your Life and Run,” both exuding a very Gordon Lightfoot feel and vocal phrasing. “Hard Edged World” even weaves a bit of old fashioned social commentary into the mix. For should-be hit singles adjust your set to play the light boppy “What Do I Know About Love?” and spot-on Brydsian re-creation “I Met Her Yesterday.” Where Do We Go? is that kind of record you can just play right through. And then maybe play again.

It’s never too late to make your debut. Some people just save what’s better for later.