What do Kansas City and Cleveland have in common? Besides being purveyors of wholesome Midwestern values, each city has a small but thriving independent rock community. Enter hipster brew-company Pabst Blue Ribbon, which recognizes each scene's potential with this surprisingly strong 15-track compilation.
Cleveland contributors range from relative newbies (This Is Exploding) to grizzled veterans (the Cowslingers), but the highlights are Dakota Floyd's "Hazy," an effervescent swirl of '90s alt-rock à la Belly, and Kiddo's pogo-punking "Woodward Avenue." Skinny-tie power pop in the vein of Nick Lowe (Coffinberry's "I Been Had") and Elvis Costello at his punk snottiest (Solo Flyer's "70's Romantic Guy") are just as infectious, and the Unknown's hardcore aggression smokes. The disc is available only from the featured bands, but the adventurous won't go wrong, hunting this one down.