Welcome to the Lehigh Valley Underground Music Archive at the Bethlehem Area Public Library, a collection of over 1,000 recordings from several decades of punk, alternative and underground rock bands from Bethlehem and beyond. Don’t know where to start? Try a random sample from the Underground Library with the music player above! (Some audio tracks may contain offensive lyrics. Listener discretion is advised.)
You can find a full list of bands to listen to using the A-to-Z menu below. There are also some curated mixes you can stream here.
See below for our “liner notes” and a collection of punk rock fliers from years of Lehigh Valley concerts.
Many of these bands have had their works collected and digitized by Frank FOE, who compiled demo tapes and published albums under his record label F.O.E. (Freedom of Expression). From the 2000s to the present, Chris “Reject” and his Bethlehem-based label Square of Opposition has taken up the mantle of publishing albums for the Lehigh Valley underground scene, as well as punk and hardcore bands from all around the USA. They were both kind enough to donate their recordings to BAPL, as was Lance LaBar’s Bethlehem-based Killer Tofu Records. Killer Tofu Records has released a wide variety of punk, indie, electronic, and experimental bands from the Lehigh Valley. We are thrilled to preserve and showcase this unique collection here!
This collection includes professionally recorded CDs, digitized 7″ vinyl records, lo-fi demos, recordings of live shows, homemade tapes, and sessions literally recorded in somebody’s basement. (Ray’s basement, to be exact.) Music can be streamed here or downloaded for your personal collection. To download a song, click the menu icon at the top of the music player to expand the list. A download icon will appear on the far right end of each track. You can also show your appreciation for a track by hitting the Like button or sharing the track on Facebook and Twitter.
To support this project and projects like it, make a donation here!