By Sarah Bennett
By Adam Lovinus
By Jena Ardell
By Nate Jackson
By Gustavo Arellano
By Nick Keppler
By Nate Jackson
By Alex Distefano
Contact: (714) 374-4071.
TRACK 14-The Torquays, "Twitchin'"
Because this is OC, we felt like putting some surf music on here. This monster rips and makes us wanna go snap our necks while trying to conquer the Wedge. LQOR: "Na-na na-na-na-na nah/Na-na na-na-na-na nah."
Contact: (714) 538-0272.
TRACK 15-Dan Lo-Fi Champion, "Chill"
Dan is the only solo guy on this band-heavy CD. He's also got the most, um . . . earthy recording-hey, that tape hiss adds ambiance, okay?-done up intimately on a spare acoustic in various bedrooms and bathrooms. Seems like he was born to busk on a sidewalk somewhere, and if we spotted him, we'd give him all our money. "Chill," as we wrote more than a year ago, has this lonesome, innocent sigh to it, the kind you want to last forever, like a good Jonathan Richman ballad.
Contact: (714) 664-6599.
TRACK 16-The Fireants, "12 Years"
Lead Fireants belter Skie Bender likely isn't as pissed off as she seems, but she could still probably kick the asses of everyone on the Lilith Fair tour-and probably the roadies, too. She's nicely adept at cranking out muscular, nonconformist songs about not looking in the past and not surrendering to male oppression, which we're very down with. Their music's cool, too, real paranoia-inducing, creepy-crawly stuff that made us feel like we were being watched. LQOR: "Your fetish is the FBI/Surveillance cameras in your eyes/I catch you dusting fingerprints/Can't you see I'm dropping hints."
Contact: (714) 848-5355.
TRACK 17-The Killingtons, "Hand"
We liked the Killingtons from the moment we caught them at the Tiki Bar nearly a year ago, so much so that we renounced our decision to return to our lucrative burger-flipping career. Then we heard some people calling them an emo band, and we wondered just what the hell was up with that. Sorry, but the Killingtons are just a great rock band, and slapping some fool label on them is silly. All venting aside, we seriously have yet to come across anyone who doesn't lust after them, and we've made instant converts of everyone we've spun their tape for, which gives us a queasy feeling of what it must be like to be a Scientologist. "Hand" is-lucky us yet again!-a new tune from them, and we think it's good enough to finally get them that deal they've been looking for.
Contact: (714) 780-9600.
TRACK 18-Charley, "She's a Warhead"
Yet another club discovery, this one from a Memorial Day weekend show at Hogue Barmichael's. The place was totally, completely, impossibly dead (it was a holiday weekend), even with Mention on the bill. But Charley-it's a band, not a guy (or a girl)-was the ultimate, an unnervingly awesome power-pop outfit that laid down wondrous tuneage in a Matthew Sweet vein. "She's a Warhead" isn't even the best song on their self-titled CD; we've since taken to "Oxsana," probably the happiest-sounding ditty we've ever heard about violent celebrity obsession. "Warhead," though, is much giddier. And, just like Big Saver, they're in need of a drummer. LQOR: "When she offers you a kiss/Prepare for nuclear bliss."
Contact: (714) 937-1253.
TRACK 19-Barrelhouse, "Albert's Shovel"
From jangly power-pop to Mississippi Delta chain-gang howling-ain't we neat? Barrelhouse are regulars on the local bar-band circuit, pounding out a fine blues-rock mélange. Here, though, singer Harliss Sweetwater (not his real name) yelps like someone's stuffing his balls in a blender and setting it on purée. Or maybe he sounds like he's ramming white-hot knitting needles into his eyeballs. Either way, the dude's in pain, baybee, and he makes sure you feel it. We haven't figured out yet just who the hell this Albert cat is or what exactly he's gonna do with that shovel.
Contact: (714) 437-8576.
TRACK 20-The White Liars, "Mr. Supernaturalistic"
The White Liars play really loud, plodding, post-Sabbath (can you tell we're trying to avoid saying "grunge?") sludge-but it's a good kinda loud, plodding, post-Sabbath sludge, which can only mean they're very Soundgarden-esque. They make us want to go out and commit bloody, violent acts-hurl bricks off overpasses, or jam tire irons between the spokes of speeding Harley riders, or hammer razorblades deeply between the teeth of creepy right-wing politicians, or . . . well, you get the idea. It's the kind of music that Wal-Mart doesn't like to sell.
Contact: (714) 903-0458.
TRACK 21-Relish, "Alone"
Like many of these bands, Relish have been gigging around for years through various incarnations and styles, yet going mostly unnoticed. We've always felt they were worthy of a higher profile, so we asked them what they'd been up to, and-bless them!-they also sent us something new, "Alone," a gorgeously spacey near-blues (it just seems a fitting adjective) song that closes everything out quite nicely with a long, aching fade-out. Ahhh.
Contact: (714) 562-6765.
Don't forget! Send tapes, CDs, show dates and comp tickets that we'll just turn around and scalp to Locals Only, OC Weekly, P.O. Box 10788, Costa Mesa, CA 92627, because if this compilation goes fast enough, we'll do another next summer.