VARIOUS ARTISTS: Sounds of Sodium: CD

This is a comp of bands in and around Salt Lake City in the year of our Lord 2014, and a part of me wants to move to Utah just to hear some of these guys play. Twenty-two different bands on here, plus an unnamed bonus track, and most of the tunes are really, really good. Of course, there are a few songs that trip over themselves, but that’s standard fare in CompilationLand. All in all, this is one of the most solid comps I’ve heard in a long time, and rarely have I heard one so solid that showcases a single scene. Lots of the songs are straight-up punk rock fury, but there is some diversity along the way—some songs with more of a pure rock’n’roll feel, some that are more melodic (and remind me somehow of Denko’s-era Dag Nasty), and even a decent ska song in the Bosstones vein. Faves on this include All Systems Fail’s “Aging Anarchist,” Die Monster Die’s “How Many People Do I Have to Kill,” and Decibel Trust’s “The Longest Hallway,” is easily my favorite song on the record. Salt Lake City seems to have it going on these days; I doff my cap to all of you!

 –Eric Carlson (Pariah Music Club)