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Chung Kings - Presents Surf-o-Tica

Chung Kings - Presents Surf-o-Tica

It's kind of a given when doing a review that the band is, well, a band, and the album is an album. Truthfully I don't think I understand what Chung Kings are. Their facebook description is "Chung Kings is a moveable feast of like-minded musicians expressing its love for Lo-Fi Surf, Ethio-Jazz, Latin, Rhythm & Blues and Exotica." I'm not sure that really clarifies it much. They've described this album as a compilation, which explains the names of groups in parentheses.

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Bandcamp Friday Roundup for May 2021: a big one!

Los Blue Marinos - Big Mamma EP

Another day when bandcamp gives up their cut of profits from sales and gives them directly to bands. Paypal ain't givin' up their cut, so on average bands get 93% of what you pay today vs 82% on a normal day. Of course, it's getting to the point where there's another way to support bands: MAYBE you're able to go see them live! Say hi to a musician, buy their records from a dimly lit table the old fashioned way.

This month was a BIG ONE for new releases. Believe it or not, I had to be pretty picky here and I had to upgrade from records I liked to records I loved. You've got your listening cut out for you!

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The Tremolo Beer Gut release You Can't Handle...

The Tremolo Beer Gut - You Can't Handle...

I feel like I've mentioned in past Gremmys something along the lines of "There weren't a lot of big releases this year" which had me wondering "What is a big release?". I mean, this is surf music, even Los Straitjackets are far from a household name. But this does feel like a big release year, with big releases from Les Agamemmnonz, Pollo Del Mar, Arno de Cea & the Clockwork Wizards, Surfer Joe, and of course these guys. They've hardly been dormant, with two LPs and two singles in the 2010s and I've managed to see them twice, but one LP was a live record and the other was covers (albeit most of them obscure enough to feel like originals). You Can't Handle the Tremolo Beer Gut is their first LP of originals since 2008.

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Oh, right it's Bandcamp Friday. Here's some notable recent releases

The Metalunas - Interstellar Surf Party

Bandcamp Friday means Bandcamp doesn't take a cut of what they sell, so ALMOST all of your purchase will go to the band (almost because Paypal exists). Which is to say it's a great day to stock up on music. It's also become a time for me to go back and write something about some recent releases to help guide you.

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Something a little different for Bandcamp Friday: Xmas music!

The Tourmaliners - Surfin' Christmas Carols

So there were e in November, but overall it wasn't a big month. Meanwhile I'm trying to scoop things up to get my 2020 non-surf picks and of course the 2020 Gremmy Awards ready to go, so let's do a lazy one.

One interesting trend about 2020 that I've noticed is that there's been a LOT of small one-offs. Halloween had a ton of singles ready for my show, and Christmas is shaping up to be the same way. Here's some 2020 releases to get you in the mood. I won't write about all of them because, let's face it, it can be hard to write about how bands play the same well-known songs and write about them in a way that sounds unique. OK I'll be more honest: I'm not in any rush to listen to Christmas music until week of, so I've barely listened to any of these. Also, for the sake of being thorough, I'll include a few non-bandcamp releases.

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It's not bandcamp Friday anymore but I missed three releases

The Seatopians - Up From the Depths

The tough thing about making articles about what you should buy on Bandcamp Fridays is that things come out ON Bandcamp Friday. And it sucks waiting an entire month to highlight them, especially when these three are just as high profile as anything that was in yesterday's list. So here's a supplemental article.

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Bandcamp Friday Review Roundup: November Edition

King Pelican - East Meets West

It's another Bandcamp Friday which means 100% of your money goes to artists, none of it to poor ol' bandcamp, some of it to Paypal. This is probably going to be a shorter one because a) there were a lot of releases but a lot of them were Halloween singles, b) there weren't a whole of of LPs and c) I'm kind of behind on prepping for the finale of the top 100 surf records of the 2010s.

But anyway, here's some standouts

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Bandcamp Friday Review Roundup: October Edition

Les Robots - Project World Control

Another Bandcamp Friday where all of your money goes directly to the artists -- and I use it as a push to get me to write some stuff about new releases. This is by no means every release or even every good release, but they're the ones that stood out to me. Some oddballs in this group! Let's dig in

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