Various Artists // Cheap Hits (305 Miami Compilation)
Cheap Miami Records
Recommended Track: Please Call – The Gun Hoes
The romantic relationship between geography and music will always be relevant. Name cities such as Seattle, London, Omaha, Chicago, Berlin, Austin, etc. and there’s sure to be instant association with a band or scene that has come to define it and vice versa. Before going any further, I’m going to come clean and let you know that I’ve never stepped foot in Florida, let alone Miami; a truth that made me particularly interested in checking out this record so lovingly put together by our friends over at Cheap Miami. While there are only maybe 5 tracks out of the whole record that really intrigue, with much of it feeling like 80’s déjà vu, the whole lot give it their all. Every band on this compilation has invested sweat and no doubt more than their fair share of shredded vocal cords to keeping the punk/garage rock scene alive, but Cheap Hits does drag on and grow lackluster if you’re not so keen on the screaming. The great news is that, true to form, these bands could probably give a fuck what anyone else thinks.
To be honest, it’s been relatively easy for Miami’s music scene to get lost in the shuffle over the past decade. Aside from being so far south from many of the more obvious music meccas, the city’s reputation for spray tans, neon clothes and EDM music often deters much of the current rock n’ roll scene. While it doesn’t appear that the Miami music scene is quite motivated enough yet to bleed into the rest of the States, they’re certainly celebrating their hometown heroes. Turns out punk rock isn’t waning, it’s just been lurking where you’d least expect it: somewhere amongst the lawn ornaments and soggy sun. With predecessors such as Discount and The Eats seeping through on every track, you can’t help but want to jump around to this less-angsty version of yester-year punk. The sample track used to lure you in, “Please Call” by The Gun Hoes is a prime example gem of the genre; killing it on what’s destined to be the next cell-phone commercial anthem.
Cheap Miami did a great job stockpiling DIY tastemakers from the Sunshine State’s darkest and brightest nooks and crannies, giving anyone who’s never stepped foot on Floridian soil a solid idea of what to expect in the nearest dive bar infested with subtropical heat. This is the number scribbled on the bathroom stall that reads “for a good time call…”—just don’t anticipate much more than that.