Various Artists – Datawaslost: Building

Various Artists
Datawaslost: Building

A little bit of every kind of music that’s too cool to not get played on the radio is represented here on this compilation of artists from the Cincinnati region. Everything from indie-pop to hip-hop is included on this album, and surprisingly enough, almost all of it is good in some way. There are certainly some bands I like better than others, but Cincinnati apparently has a good batch of underground bands just reaching for some recognition.
Post-Haste’s “New Brighton the Mighty” is a mod-rock slab of hand claps and bouncy beats, just the kind of thing that you wish you were cool enough to dance to. On “Can’t Explain,” Coltrane Motion uses a little bit of John Coltrane smoothness with some electronic beats for an ultra-cool beat-laden rock track. And behind a little Sonic Youth-style distortion, Swissfarlo has created a very fun Paul Westerberg style pop song with “Cans for Money,” maybe my favorite track here.
Deltoro’s “Gasoline,” a kind of trippy ultra-weird pop song feels a bit simple for me, but the simple acoustic mellowness of Velcro One’s “Long for Fever” helps bring things back down to earth. The most recognizable band here is probably Chalk, whose “Nerve Endings of Missing Fingers” is an all-out sonic assault of blazing guitars, thick, distorted bass, and sung/shouty vocals, a definite high-point on the album.
The acoustic pop of Travels the World’s “A Right One” is only spoiled by the singer’s whiney voice. Much more up-beat, “Freak Flag” from Pop Lolita is a fun rock-n-roll song that reminds me of Johnny Polansky, and DJ Aphid goes to the other side of the spectrum with a very cool, bassy hip-hop track called “In the Aspens, in the Quakies.” Switching lines again, Halleymill does my favorite 80s punk-sounding lo-fi rock song, “Lame,” which would be such a killer song with better production.
The Mitchells do a kind of bouncy Carpenters thing with “Down,” and Structure Factor 8 contribute a whiney girl-punk sounding track that’s ridiculously fun, called “Samuel the Translator.” There’s a lot of harmonica on the Neil Young-like “Ask No Questions” by Compiler, and Gossett closes off the album with “Love Can,” a bouncy, synth-led pop song that still has a very cool, mellow feel. The singer for this band has a kind of early David Bowie feel, and it’s the vocals that propel this song from mediocre to excellent.
All in all, a fun compilation. Even the hip-hop projects feel very indie and underground, and each of these bands is basically pop-based, which helps keep the album flowing. It’s quite an enjoyable listen with some bands I’ll definitely be looking for more from, and I suggest anyone in Cincinnati use this as a tour of good local music.