Various artists, Suicide Squeeze Records Presents: Forever Singles (out now, Suicide Squeeze, suicidesqueeze.bigcartel.com)
The 7˝ single format has a special place in punk and garage-rock history. Trading singles and discovering new bands helped forge a community, not to mention gave vinyl collectors with rarities and “holy grails” to seek out. Seattle’s Suicide Squeeze continued the dream with its Forever Singles series, releasing limited-run split singles from trending fuzzed-out groups like King Tuff and JEFF the Brotherhood. For this release, all those tracks have been compiled into one limited-edition LP for a fast and ferocious ride. In some ways, compiling these tracks takes away from the allure and thrill of finding that perfect single, but it makes sense. For those who haven’t been following the recent garage-rock resurgence, this collection is a solid recap that succinctly captures the genre’s varying styles. Meat Market’s “Too Tired” represents furious guitar freakouts and gang vocals, while La Luz’ “T.V. Dream” takes to surf melodies and copious amounts of reverb. The more obscure tracks are really the heart and soul of the album and of the Forever Singles concept. The new-wave beat and crunchy guitars of Davila 666’s “No Crees Que Ya Cansa” feels like a forgotten but fantastic 45 found at the bottom of a stack of dusty records—the type of track collectors hope to stumble upon—while Nü Sensae’s goth-tinged “Throw” feels troubled and menacing and perfectly satisfying for young-adult angst. Forever Singles may take the thrill out of the vinyl hunt, but it’s for the greater good.