It's not easy being a professional music journalist. It's also not that hard (not as difficult as, say, working in a coal mine or teaching in a public school), but still for those of us that spend our days scouring the English language for new ways to describe pop music, there are never enough words at our disposal to describe crystalline guitar sounds or trenchant basslines. This is why things like "chillwave" exist: terms used to describe and identify alleged trends in music and posit them as something entirely new and important. In the case of bands like Washed Out, Neon Indian, and Memory Tapes -- groups usually consisting of one person making fuzzy sounding electronic music on a computer in their bedroom -- chillwave (not to be confused with "witchhouse" or "bro-step") is an apt modifier. Characterized by gauzy synths, muted and generally reverbed-out vocals, somnambulistic BPMs, and a relaxed, lost in time vibe, the music's goal is the opposite of rocking: the goal is to chill you out in a beautiful, albeit vague, kind of way. To be fair, none of these new "chillwave" bands are anything particularly different from, say, Boards of Canada, late-era Slowdive or SeeFeel, but what's important is that they are doing it NOW (as opposed to the early '90s when bands mining this territory were all called shoegazers). To be extra fair, "chillwave" isn't necessarily a pejorative or even a particularly annoying term, it's just a lazy way of describing what seems to be a kind of cyclical zeitgeist, a recurring impulse on the part of young bands every few years to make music that sounds like a daydream. In a few years, we'll just be calling it something else.