VARIOUS ARTISTS: Spike: A San Pedro Compilation: LP

Pretty much a perfect compilation in design and execution. Craig Ibarra is one of San Pedro’s biggest boosters: in addition to his amazing book A Wailing of a Town, he runs Water Under The Bridge Records, which showcases music by bands calling Pedro home. It’s easy to get lured in by the heavy hitters here, like mike watt and the secondmissing, Alley Cats, or Toys That Kill. That said, Craig has done a great job of curating a great roster of newer and lesser exposed bands, mixing up tones and styles to make this one cohesive and engaging throughout. Co-Ed is a great new band whose “Trenches” is simultaneously angular and muscular, building on the promise of their 2020 demo, and Tables Turned have a Paisley Underground vibe, just to name a few. I’ve been listening to this one straight through a few times a day since it arrived. –Michael T. Fournier (Water Under The Bridge, waterunderthebridgerecords.com)