BAUWAVES: U R Everything: LP

Bauwaves is the new thing fronted by Lew Houston, who has formerly spent time in the bands Party Garbage, Wild America, and Lesser Beings. U R Everything is Lew at his seemingly most raw and vulnerable, with nine songs of the utmost honest and direct display of unrestrained feelings of a person seemingly going through the worst of times. The thing about this record is the fact that the bass and drums are very much understated, leaving Lew’s often wavering voice and his distorted guitar up front to paint these vivid pictures of great despair. Because of this, the sounds here are hard to pigeonhole, giving this more of an untraditional indie rock record feeling, timeless and fresh. This record is absolutely great—I cannot recommend it enough. –Mark Twistworthy (Salinas, salinasrecords.com, bauwaves.bandcamp.com)

BEACH PATROL: Making Waves: CD

No thanks. This is ’70s-style mainstream rock’n’roll that I’m not remotely interested in. –Kayla Greet (Self-released)

BEDROOMS, THE: Passive Viewing: LP

My kinda chilly: a post-punk package of intoned vocals gesturing towards pop, with bass and tom-heavy drums providing echo-y propulsion for synth and impressionistic picked guitars. Siouxsie isn’t a bad point of reference, nor are Savages. Imminently listenable, with subtleties revealing themselves on repeated spins. All this, and distinctive packaging evoking the best of both Dangerhouse and Letraset aesthetic. I’m in. –Michael T. Fournier (Domestic Departure, domesticdeparture.bigcartel.com)

BEDWETTERS ANONYMOUS: Have U Experienced Discomfort: 7”

This record of weirdo punkers sounds like it would probably fit alongside with other contemporary weirdo punkers like The Coneheads, Uranium Club, and the like. What sets this apart from those heavy hitters is a general feeling of being a little more restrained, and ultimately less “hardcore” influenced, whatever that means. The herky-jerky of Devo mixed with the early southern California punk sound of the Urinals is a good reference point. This is pretty good. –Mark Twistworthy (Neon Taste, neontasterecords.bandcamp.com)

BEEKEEPERS, THE: Song Demos 2: CS

Some sharp, well-crafted pop that feels embedded in tradition, which holds it back in a way. The lyrics rhyme, the chords resolve, it’s solid enough. But something keeps the songs from achieving flight. Maybe it’s the production? Too much rule-following? I’d like to hear what comes next. –Matt Werts (Beekeepers, the-beekeepers.bandcamp.com)

BEEKEEPERS: Song Demos 3: Floppy disc

I assume that, at some point in time, I must have asked—largely rhetorically—“what could possibly be a dumber format for music than cassettes?” In testimony to my clear lack of vision, these three songs are presented in the timeless 3.5” floppy disc format (which, one must grudgingly admit, was a great format for unlicensed font swapping back in the day). While I do have an (allegedly) working floppy drive, I found this disc to be wholly unreadable on my Windows laptop; my Mac desktop could detect and open the disc, but couldn’t copy or play the files off it, which may (but probably doesn’t) have something to do with the fact that the little shutter fell right off of the disc housing the first time I picked it up. After an embarrassingly determined period of attempting to get the disc to work, I went online and found that these songs were all available as free downloads, so I tossed the floppy in the trash and listened on my phone. They’re actually a lot better than one would assume a band who releases material on a floppy disc would be, kinda like if one of the dudes from They Might Be Giants sang for the Dead Milkmen. All the same, being old school and all, I think I’ll wait until they release this on those O.G. 5” floppies. Go big or go home! BEST SONG & BEST SONG TITLE: “Waste All My Time (With Her On My Mind).” FANTASTIC AMAZING TRIVIA FACT: If you release your material on floppy disc, you forfeit the right to a Fantastic Amazing Trivia Fact. –Rev. Nørb (Beekeepers, the-beekeepers.bandcamp.com)

BELTONES, THE: Cheap Trinkets: LP

Thank Mahfü for reissues. Given how much I adore Stiff Little Fingers, this is right up my alley: a sound that could easily be Inflammable Material part two, right down to the inclusion of Wailers cover, though in this case it’s “Concrete Jungle” instead of “Johnny Was.” No simple ’00s rehash of ’77, these cats had the chops to deliver some well-crafted and seriously good tunes, and this release is crammed to the gills with ’em—raw, tuneful, and anthemic. This isn’t going to leave the turntable for the foreseeable future. –Jimmy Alvarado (Costalito, costalitorecords.com)

BLACK HELICOPTER: Seams of Geldor: 7”

First song is an original with noisy guitars and pummeling rhythmic twists and turns. The flip is a Bullet Lavolta cover. Both songs satisfy and the artwork is sci-fi and equally engaging. I have to get out this year to see this band live. –Sean Koepenick (Chunklet Industries, chunklet.com)

BLACK LINING: Twist My Arm: 7”

I had high hopes for this record when I opened it and a sticker reading “Punkrock ist wichtiger als Sonne” and stamped with Antifa Gourmet fell out. I’m happy to report it didn’t disappoint. Black Lining from Mainz, Germany writes cheerful pop punk with a strong Lookout Records vibe. “Grumpy Clown” sounds so gleeful—which given the lyrics they are not—that it feels like the clown is putting on a show or a front, which I guess is the point. “Sunshine Campaign” is similarly tongue-in-cheek with a bright, warm criticism of hypocrites who are all words and no action. “Bottom line” sounds high in spirits while describing the rock bottom lows of checking the news, seeing “this perpetual hand me down” of how past generations have and continue to destroy our future and laments “my hands can’t stay clean here!” But… you know… upbeat! There’s a certain hopefulness that’s conveyed when you speak the dismal truths in an ebullient melody accentuated with many woahs. It’s speedy. It’s catchy and it has something to say. –Lorien Lamarr (Keep It A Secret, keepitasecret.de)

BOY(MOUTH): Country Music Bullshit Crossover Artist: CS

The whole “sonic collage” thing doesn’t really scream “I AM INTERESTING, TAKE ME SERIOUSLY” a whole bunch these days, yet the sheer length of these pieces—one per side—does command a certain respect simply by virtue of showing up to the dance and lasting that long. The B side—“All Your Heero’s Are Dead”—sounds a bit like “Revolution 9,” minus the quotable bits; the M side—“Love It Or Leave It”—goes off into more of a Two Virgins vibe, if the part of Yoko Ono was played by soundbites of American politicians hankering for armed conflict. I’ll shit myself if Boy(Mouth) ever thought they’d get compared to the Beatles. BEST SONG & TITLE “All Your Heero’s Are Dead” FANTASTIC AMAZING TRIVIA FACT: If the hand-numbering is to be believed, my review copy constitutes four percent of all copies made. –Rev. Nørb (Rotten Princess, rottenprincessrecords.bandcamp.com)