Slacker Logo



Named for his fear of the ocean, Wavves, the skuzzy project of San Diego slacker Nathan Williams, is a blend of distorted no-fi and refined sunshiny melodies. Charmingly messy, most of his lyrics, while difficult to decipher, generally revolve around the subjects of weed, boredom, and the beach -- when he isn't poking jabs at the gloomy subculture of goth rock (a common theme, found in "Goth Girls," "California Goths," "Summer Goths," "Surf Goths," and "Beach Goths"). Wavves was conceived just after Williams, at age 21, quit his job as a clerk at Music Trader, while he was dividing his free time between skateboarding, writing for his hip-hop blog, Ghost Ramp, and making music using an '80s Tascam cassette recorder and Garage Band software. Due to his inexperience with the program, the result of one month's worth of bedroom recording sessions was two full albums of songs: all completely mangled by overdriven inputs. Rather than scrapping the material, he embraced the in-the-red aesthetic and started promoting the songs online. Wavves was quickly embraced and touted as "the next big thing" by Internet music critics and fellow bloggers. Many praised the immediacy and D.I.Y. nature of his work, and Williams capitalized on those aspects, continuously uploading free digital versions of his music -- including two 7" singles, a cassette, and an EP -- all with simple self-drawn artwork or scanned photos for cover art. Wavves' first LP, simply titled Wavves, became available around this time as well, and it was released in a limited run by Woodsist. The more confusingly titled Wavvves (note the third "V") followed just after, and was planned for release by De Stijl before Williams jumped ship to Fat Possum. After the track list was revamped, the release date was pushed back a month and Wavvves was officially made available on March 17, 2009. After receiving mostly glowing reviews in April, Wavves got his share of bad press in late May. While performing live at the Primavera Sound Festival, assisted by drummer Ryan Ulsh, Williams had a minor meltdown and walked offstage. Later, he issued an apology, chalking up the incident to poor decision-making and a drug concoction of ecstasy, Valium, and Xanax. In 2010, after recording a few tracks with indie drummer extraordinaire Zach Hill, Williams entered the studio with Grammy-winning producer Dennis Herring to record a straightforward and surprisingly polished album. Following the August release of King of the Beach, Wavves toured as a trio with Williams assisted by former bandmates of the late Jay Reatard, bassist Stephen Pope and drummer Billy Hayes. After parting with Fat Possum, Williams released a new EP in the fall of 2011 under the Wavves name, titled Life Sux, featuring guest appearances by Best Coast and Fucked Up. He and Pope then began recording a new album with the production help of John Hill (Rihanna, Santigold), using their own money to finance the project. Mom + Pop signed the band and released the slickly produced, very '90s-influenced Afraid of Heights in early spring of 2013. Williams next focused on his beat-driven project Sweet Valley -- which he and his brother Joel started in 2012 -- realeasing their album SV in July 2013. Not content to stop at two, he formed another band, Spirit Club, in 2014 which featured his brother again, and Andrew Caddick (aka Jeans Wilder). Williams' collaborative spirit remained unquenchable and he teamed with Dylan Baldi of Cloud Nothings to record an album, No Life for Me, in 2014. It was released by Williams' Ghost Ramp label, right before Wavves fifth album. The stripped down, very hooky V was their first album for Warner Bros. and the process was painful for Williams, as a series of angry tweets sent out just before the September 2015 release date made clear. ~ Jason Lymangrover
Read More Read Less

Stations Featuring

    New Indie First

    New Indie First
    2 songs

    Top Indie

    Top Indie
    7 songs

    Indie Rock Mix

    Indie Rock Mix
    7 songs

    Indie Party

    Indie Party
    7 songs

    New Alternative First

    1 song

Albums by

Top Songs by

  1.   Song
  2.   Demon to Lean On
  3.   Million Enemies
  4.   King of the Beach
  5.   Post Acid
  6.   Way Too Much
  7.   Animal
  8.   Flamezesz
  9.   Super Soaker
  10.   Bug
  11.   Baby Say Goodbye
  12.   I Wanna Meet Dave Grohl
  13.   You're Welcome
  14.   Pony
  15.   Daisy
  16.   Green Eyes
  17.   Idiot
  18.   Take on the World
  19.   Nine is God
  20.   Baseball Cards
  21.   My Head Hurts
  22.   Leave
  23.   When Will You Come
  24.   Linus Spacehead
  25.   Convertible Balloon
  26.   Vermin
  27.   Cry Baby
  28.   All the Same
  29.   Heavy Metal Detox
  30.   Hippies is Punks
  31.   Gimme a Knife
  32.   Killr Punx, Scary Demons
  33.   Wait
  34.   Redlead
  35.   That's on Me
  36.   Beat Me Up
  37.   Afraid of Heights
  38.   Lunge Forward
  39.   Sail to the Sun
  40.   TV Luv Song
  41.   Destroy (feat. Members of Fucked Up)
  42.   Poor Lenore
  43.   Mickey Mouse
  44.   Wavves
  45.   Teenage Super Party
  46.   Spaced Raider
  47.   Lover
  48.   Here's To The Sun
  49.   Summer Goth
  50.   Beach Goth
  51.   Surf Goth
  52.   Rainbow Everywhere
  53.   No Hope Kids
  54.   Space Raider
  55.   Intro Goth
  56.   To the Dregs
  57.   Nodding Off by Best Coast
  58.   Goth Girls
  59.   Paranoid
  60.   The Boys Will Love Us
  61.   Loser Year
  62.   Weed Demon
  63.   California Goths
  64.   Beach Demon
  65.   Yoked
  66.   Sun Opens My Eyes
  67.   Tarantula
  68.   Gun In the Sun
  69.   Side Yr On
  70.   Everything Is My Fault
  71.   Heart Attack
  72.   Cop
  73.   I Can't Dream
  74.   Dog
  75.   So Bored
  76.   Mystic

Artists Related to Wavves

Loading Sliders...
  1. + -



Casting to |