S.B.F. are a twitching Los Angeles duo made up of Cruz Somers (recognizable via singles under his own name as well as SOCIALITES) and Ray Schmidt (of Neck Chop’s very own RACE CAR), two insular and prolific punks with penchants for punky home-recorded noize. After joining forces in 2016, S.B.F. immediately launched their stun offensive via singles on Drunken Sailor and Goodbye Boozy, surfing praise from the jump. Their recognizable racket --- tough punk with electronic twists and stabs --- sounds a tad harsher than most of their counterparts, with one member supplying a hook while the other drags it across concrete.
With smart and jarring sleights of hand, S.B.F.’s approach combats the very notion that synthetic instrumentation commands electro and/or synth punk classifications. Though their sound is rightfully centered on programmed drumbeats, it’s the dual-guitar punk acrobatics that the duo seems infinitely more concerned with, with guitars alternating between buzz and bludgeon in menacing fashion. This tilt in formula makes S.B.F.’s sound panicked, darkly cinematic and very punk…Techno toys be damned.
This one’s for all the late-nite droolers out there --- those that wake the neighbors on weeknights and never ever apologize for it.
Stiff Buddies Flailing.
Synth Bro Foundation.
Stoned Bleeping Friends.
Screamers Biggest Fans.
SAME BEAT FOREVER.
Neck Chop quite proudly presents S.B.F.’s debut album to close out 2018.
- Mitch Cardwell
Our take: Debut full-length from this drum machine-backed punk duo from California and it’s a massive step up from their earlier material. The formula is largely the same—tough, catchy punk with a drum machine pumping away relentlessly behind it—but the significantly beefier sound and razor sharp songwriting make this the S.B.F. record to get. When you first listen to Same Beat Forever the first things to jump out are the massive choruses (see the kick-off track, “Tarantula Hawk”) and the street tough vibe. Seth remarked that this record reminds him of oi! music, not because S.B.F. have any of those stylistic traits, but rather because this sounds like simple and tough street rock a la Blitz. When you listen closely, though, you hear a lot of delicate detail. Every song is packed with catchy guitar hooks worthy of the Marked Men (though S.B.F. sound nothing like them), and despite the self-mocking title, S.B.F. use their drum machine more effectively than just about anyone since Big Black. With eight short tracks that range from Big Black-esque pounding (“Rock to the Head”) to Dead Kennedys-esque nightmare surf (“Devil’s Monocle”), this begs you to play it over and over.