Phil Dirt - Reverb Central - PO Box 1609, Felton, CA 95018-1609 USA
The Atlantics - The Next Generationdotdotdotdot
artworkThe new CD from the Atlantics presents an inverted cold vision of a post Bee Gees surf culture. While that may sound strange, even negative, remember, the Bee Gees recorded "New York Mining Disaster 1941" and "In My Own Time" before their Saturday Night Fever epic disco transition, and from their roots, they easily could have braved the masses ire and produced great gutsy pop if they wanted to. So it's not hard to imagine this great band, who had a huge following in their day, dabbling with grins in the world of pop remixes and disco beats.

The Next Generation is miles from their traditional sound, but it's a heavy influence here, and the combo of the sound of "Bombora" and the pulsing rhythm of the dance club is no less powerful than when 999 cut "Wild Sun." Not for the trad nazi, and an open mind is required, but I found this to be very enjoyable and inventive.

The Next Generation is a double disc set wityh a video of XXXXXX and a bunch of pictures and all manor of fun.
Picks: Tube Screamer, Under The Hood, Atlantica, Pipeline, Mission Control, Surfing In Alaska, Barrel River, Wipe Out, Shark Island, The Crack Of Noon, Bombora ... The Next Generation, Bombora (Nylon Mix), Bombora (Banjo Mix), Bombora (Radio Edit), Blackberry Blossom Stomp, Reef Break Remix, Night Star Remix, Bombora

Track by Track Review


Tube Screamer dotdotdot
Discotheque Surf (Instrumental)

Programmed percussion, suave bass, thumpy dance kick drum... but wait, it's the Atlantics grinding out a rockin' riff and long note guitar lead. This hybrid of the rock instro genre and the dance floor is catchy and intense. Quite interesting.

Under The Hood dotdotdot
Discotheque Surf (Instrumental)

Harmonic chords and timeless notes open the hypnotic rhythm of "Under The Hood." If Link Wray were to play the high registers and be the house band at a discotheque, it might be like this. Maybe similar to some of the Malibooz instros of the past decade, it's catchy and intense, and still captures the coastal life, while thumping the night away.

Atlantica dotdotdotdot
Discotheque Surf (Instrumental)

High flying, spacy, whale-call echoed, and very modern, "Atlantica" is exotic, Latin, infectious. The scream of the guitar is very modern and intense. A bit noodly at times, but quite cool.

Pipeline dotdotdotdot
Discotheque Surf (Instrumental)

Echoed feedback, intense power, and catchy rhythms conspire to update the Chantays' "Pipeline" with a thoroughly modern look and feel. Where Bruce Johnston took the wind out of "Pipeline" and Mike Curb slaughtered "Miserlou," the Atlantics retain it's power while bringing it into 21st century parlors. Some inspired guitar filigrees and plenty of energy... too cool!

Mission Control dotdotdot
Discotheque Surf (Instrumental)

"Mission Control" opens slowly and softly like a rising heartbeat in a swamp cabin at night, but soon gives way to swirled guitar chords and a thumpy beat, with soaring guitar lines. The gutty low-E grumble contrasts to the dance floor kick 'n' thump.

Surfing In Alaska dotdotdotdot
Discotheque Surf (Instrumental)

A thump and pump exotic beat and riff chord rhythm rise under an interesting and circular lead line. Perhaps the most interesting writing here, "Surfing In Alaska" is cold and intense like a long barrel ride in icy water.

Barrel River dotdotdotdot
Discotheque Surf (Instrumental)

Speaking of barrel rides, "Barrel River" rides a standing wave with some double picked lines and huge guitar sound. I'm struck by the possibility of the Scorpions (Uli Roth, not Michael Schenker) fronting the Bee Gees at a surf fest. That all sounds strange, yet this is quite a powerful track.

Wipe Out dotdotdotdot
Discotheque Surf (Instrumental)

Well, I've never considered this possibility. The Surfaris' classic "Wipe Out" with longs bent chords and a funky discotheque beat... There's something kinda liquid and sexy about this. Amazing!

Shark Island dotdotdotdot
Discotheque Surf (Instrumental)

The intense rising rhythm gives way to an almost spaghetti western melody line. Shredding glissandos, soft western melody lines. big chords, and that beat. Very interesting.

The Crack Of Noon dotdotdot
Discotheque Surf (Instrumental)

In some ways, this reminds me of Gary Hoey, though certainly less wanky and egocentric. Long whammied distortion and rhythm domination, with a relentless beat.

Bombora ... The Next Generation dotdotdotdot
Discotheque Surf (Instrumental)

Heavily processed with programmed sequences, and a long intro, they eventually get to the classic riffs of their great "Bombora." This is a fascinating blend of the extreme credibility of "Bombora" and the dance floor. I found it hard not to like this. Its adventurous and brave excursion into the strobe lit world of the disco is attractive in a strange way, perhaps similar to the Surf Coasters industrial remix of "Miserlou."

Bombora (Nylon Mix) dotdotdotdot
Discotheque Surf (Instrumental)

"Bombora (Nylon Mix)" is way more compact, more direct, and more tightly pop structured. The arrangement is brilliant! Amazing!

Bombora (Banjo Mix) dotdotdotdot
Discotheque Surf (Instrumental)

Heavy intense guitar twango, bumpy disco rhythms, and that banjo... it's like a surf journey into the backwaters of Deliverance backlit by strobes and lasers. Yikes! The banjo break is priceless, especially the banjo glissando... I can't resist!

Bombora (Radio Edit) dotdotdot
Discotheque Surf (Instrumental)

Even more effected and remixed... pumpin' and searchin' for the urban dance AM dial magnets, paraphrasing Captain Beefheart, the radio edit is just too much for my mirror.

Blackberry Blossom Stomp dotdotdotdot
Discotheque Surf (Instrumental)

Heavy and thick, bumped beat backed, this circular country hoe-down is like Roy Clark at the disco. Way too fun!

Reef Break Remix dotdotdotdot
Discotheque Surf (Instrumental)

The great guitar lines of "Reef Break" contrast against the pumpin' disco beat creates an irreconcilable paradox of sounds and credibilities that's magnetic. Strange and powerful, with a grin.

Night Star Remix dotdotdot
Discotheque Surf (Instrumental)

This slow and sinewy tune is grumbled and bumped, while the guitar soars on wispy clouds. Eerie and spatial, serious and flighty. Quite pretty.

Bombora dotdotdot
Discotheque Surf (Instrumental)

This is the video of the radio edit, with surf footage interspersed with live performance footage. Very cool.