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The Concussions release Newaygo Sound Machine

The Concussions - Newaygo Sound Machine

The Concussions hit an amazing middle ground between being absolutely crammed with hooks and being understated. What I find is that this combination makes for an absurd amount of repeat spins in the car, especially as background music. Now, I hate talking about instro as background music, but when everybody finds themselves whistling it when they get out, I think that's OK. The Concussions are able to grab that simpler form of riff-based song-writing that seems left in the 60s and they do it effortlessly.

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Tidal Baby release UFO Surf Club

Tidal Baby - UFO Surf Club

This is the first LP from Tidal Baby (formerly known as Grimm Futures) seemingly out of Canada? Their label is, and I swear I hear a bit of a Huevos Rancheros twang to them, so that's my guess. 7 instrumentals and one vocal track with a great loud-as-hell guitar sound complimented well by the bass. They crank out a lot of noise for a 3-piece. This is recorded live and I do think that holds them back a bit, but the songs and the sound are solid and it's definitely worth the free download from bandcamp. Looking forward to hearing more from them.

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Sandy Nelson releases The Veebles EP

Sandy Nelson - The Veebles

It brings a smile to my face to see that Sandy Nelson is still at it... and he really wanted a smile out of this record. Unless I missed something, the last we heard from him was 2008's Nelsonized by Sandy Nelson and the Sin City Termites. If you haven't heard it, stop everything and do that by any means necessary. It's louder and meaner than anything you've heard from him and it's great all the way through.

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Surfer Joe & The Dead Rocks release Surfer Joe & The Dead Rocks 7"

Surfer Joe & The Dead Rocks 7"

Italy meets Brazil! Surfer Joe and The Dead Rocks were touring Brazil together and recorded this impromptu session while doing an interview. Now we get to hear it! 2 tracks of trad surf, one laid back and one bouncy and fun.

They've got a video that explains it in a much more enjoyable way than I can do.

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Robotron releases Robotron Versus The Invincible and Indestructible Reptilicus

Robotron - Robotron Versus The Invincible and Indestructible Reptilicus

Robotron is a project by Bjørn Hovland featuring 7 tracks of monstrous fuzzed out tough surf. While a lot of these projects where one member writes and plays many parts tend to sound stripped down, this gives no indication based on the music itself. Partially because this was hardly a bedroom recording: Bjorn hails from Norway, the album was mixed in Brazil and mastered in Seattle!

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The Grave Diggers release Grave Diggers EP

The Grave Robbers - Grave Diggers EP

The Grave Diggers play generally aggressive punk-influenced surf with tinges of horror surf. Those tinges are especially noticeable in the back-to-back Ghastly Ones covers. But this is a pretty fun record, they definitely know how to keep up a great energy and pump out a lot of sound for a threesome. Ontop of nice guitarism, they have a bunch of small little tweaks, sound effects, and quirks that add another level of interestingness. This isn't exactly the flashiest cover art -- with something a little more noticeable I think they'd deserve to get noticed.

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The Mermers release Get Swell Soon

The Mermers - Get Swell Soon

This is the debut EP from this Gainesville foursome. From the beginning I get a strong Ghastly Ones vibe, but as the record progressed I think they started to slip a bit more into their own sound. The organ work on this is a lot of fun, especially on "Party Grave" and "Blood Barrel". The guitar sometimes gives me some early Man or Astro-man flashbacks, but on the whole they don't compare that closely.

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Amphibian Man releases Waves EP

Amphibian Man - Waves EP

Ukraine's most prolific surf musician strikes again! Waves is a more sunny, trad surf approach but with a relentless energy. There's a greater focus on melody, though with oodles of speed and intensity kept in the mix. If you're a fan of 13th Magic Skull, I think this will be right up your alley, but it should appeal to a lot of surf fans in general.

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The Crowkeepers release Witches of the Rock

The Crowkeepers - Witches of the Rock

The Crowkeepers were on my radar because of guitarist Bill Simms from Shoot the Pier - a two-person moody surf group he did with his daughter. The Crowkeepers keep a similarly somber tone to them that seems to loom even over the more upbeat tracks. It never really roars, much more likely to creep. They really lean into that sound on the album title track "Witches on the Rock", and I think it works well.

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