April 22 2014 06:29 PM

A survey of new San Diego digital releases

Ash Williams

If you search for albums tagged "San Diego" on Bandcamp, you'll find some interesting stuff. In this semi-regular column, we sift through recent postings and report on our findings.

Night Drippers, Os Drongos: Os Drongos sound like they've done their goth-rock homework. "Breakfast Sand," the first track on Night Drippers, immediately brings to mind the dark, abrasive sounds of Joy Division and The Virgin Prunes, with just a twist of psychedelia. And while the world might not need another post-punk-revival band, Os Drongos pull it off with enough originality that I might rethink my stance on that. 

:(, Supermarket: It's astonishing just how much instrumental hip-hop you'll find on Bandcamp, and a hefty dose of it seems to come out of our backyard. Supermarket's take on the sound is pleasant enough, big on hypnotic synths and twinkly crackles. Nothing revolutionary, but they've got my attention.

... And the Beat Goes On, Ash Williams: Ash Williams kick up one hell of a cowpunk dust storm on ... And the Beat Goes On, which immediately brings to mind the likes of Meat Puppets and The Beat Farmers. All of the band's original tracks are super-fun, but also included on this set is an alt-country version of Outkast's "Hey Ya," which is the most hoarse and ragged you'll ever hear that hit song.

Mind, Placid Inc.: With a name like Placid Inc., I'm struck with immediate assumptions about what I'm going to hear—softened synthesizers, womb-like ambiance, etc. That's only half true; Placid Inc. mostly deals in downtempo beats and trip-hop tunes that are chill but not comatose. 

Demo 2014, Drug Control: Drug Control is a straight-edge hardcore band, so that should be all the explanation you need about the name. And their music is pretty much par for the course for a straight-edge hardcore band: power chords, slower-paced mosh sections, gang vocals and lots of angry barks. There are literally thousands of bands that sound exactly like this, but one more isn't going to hurt anything.

jefft@sdcitybeat.com or follow him at @1000TimesJeff


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