Les Robots

Bandcamp Friday Roundup: September 2022

Les Robots - Exploring the Boundaries of the Multiverse

It's been forever since the last Bandcamp Friday roundup I've done and there have been a whole ton of excellent surf releases. Unfortunately this one lands in the middle of a vacation with little internet or even time availability. But I've got a bit of a window to do something here, so I'm going to highlight as many as I can before my son finishes his nap or this laundry gets done. I'm really going to try to focus on quantity of reviews over quality, though the whole point is that the music itself is all something I'd recommend. Inevitably I won't get to mention everything I'd like to, but this is better than nothing.

I don't even know when the last one of these bandcamp fridays were. I'm just going to start from now and work backwards-ish.

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Gremmy Awards 2021: Best "Mad" Instro Record

Best "Mad" Instro

This is a category for records that are either intentionally twisting surf conventions, pushing for novelty, or have moved past surf and into territory unknown. Or to put it another way, things that didn't fit neatly enough in the other categories. This is also a weird one to judge, since almost by definition these albums are pretty different from each other. Whatever. Here we go.

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Gremmy Awards 2021: Best Album Art

Gremmy Awards 2021: Best Album Art

Album art is important. Bad album art can negatively affect a listener's opinion going in, and good album art can inform how to approach the album, what imagery they can conjure in their head. I think this especially important in instrumental music, where so much is left to interpretation without lyrics to guide you. Here are some records that stood out to me before I even listened to them.

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Gremmy Awards 2020: Best "Mad" Instro Record

Best Mad Instro

This is the category for bands that skirt the edge of what would be considered surf, either intentionally or by chance. This was another category this year where there was an abundance of good stuff, moreso than usual. Could it be that surf groups are trending in a more adventurous direction? Or maybe instrumental groups are gaining in popularity. I think it's both! Anyway, here's my pick of 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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Bandcamp Friday Review Roundup of August/Early September Releases

Messer Chups - Lost Tracks

Another Bandcamp Friday where 100% of your purchase benefits the band. Admittedly this one snuck up on me, so forgive me if the reviews are a little hasty, but there's a good chunk of them! Here's some releases that I think warrant your attention. In no particular order.

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The Top Surf Records of the 2010s: 100-81

2010s 100-81

This is the first set of albums included in this countdown. Though these may be lower on the list, being on the list at all is a great accomplishment, and if it were entirely up to me several of these would be much higher. That said, since these had fewer votes than higher on this list and there were more tie-breakers to decide, their position was a little less absolute and my thumb pressed on the scale a little bit more than it will in subsequent chunks.

For more details about how this list was decided upon,

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Gremmys 2019: Best Trad Surf Record

Best Trad Surf Record

The definition of surf gets less clear all the time, but thankfully there are still some groups trying to anchor it down by explicitly reaching for the 60's. That sound is timeless, and though I love hearing how people take surf to new dimensions, it absoluteyl doesn't need to be taken anywhere. Here are some groups that made great records by sticking to the tried-and-true sound.

Honorable Mentions

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