Phil Dirt - Reverb Central - PO Box 1609, Felton, CA 95018-1609 USA
The Breakaways - Time Surfin'dotdotdotdot
artworkThe Breakaways have a knack for a softer brand of surf instrumental that is very attractive and very traditional, yet lush and round. Most of the arrangements are with lead guitar supported by two rhythm guitars, one dry chords and one damped and heavily reverbed, not unlike the Astronauts'. This is a fine CD of well done surf instros.
Picks: North Shore Rumble, Ride The Crest, Hot Doggin', Waves Of Change, Pray For Surf, No Surf, Journey To The Stars, Storm Surf, Baja, Diamond Head, Island Of The Sea, Out Of Limits, Shark Breath, Longboard Lesson, Penetration, Apache, The Curl's Revenge, The Crusher, Percussionator, Surfin' Sam

Track by Track Review


North Shore Rumble dotdotdotdotdot
Surf (Instrumental)

Dribbling surf and whammy, crunch and charm, and a restrained menacing quality as well. The up-down glissandoes are just too cool! Excellent!

Ride The Crest dotdotdotdotdot
Surf (Instrumental)

A warm splashy melody riff runs above a happy go lucky damped rhythm. "Ride The Crest" bounces and prances with an undulating rhythm that's very infectious. A very upbeat track.

Hot Doggin' dotdotdotdot
Surf (Instrumental)

This is a solid and more or less traditional arrangement of the Astronauts' "Hot Doggin'," but softer and more gentle. The tune is flexible enough and melodic enough to support the transition, and the effect is excellent.

Waves Of Change dotdotdotdot
Surf (Instrumental)

A slow moving vibrato quivered song with a coastal sunset sound. Liquid melody lines and a soft semi-lush sound create an almost vacation vision. Quite pretty.

Pray For Surf dotdotdotdotdot
Surf (Instrumental)

With a damped rhythm on the left and dry chords on the right in support of the lead, "Pray For Surf" is reminiscent of the Astronauts arrangement wise, but sports a much softer sound. Spunky and smooth, and evoking of coastal surfaris in search of the perfect summer surf.

No Surf dotdotdot
Surf (Instrumental)

"No Surf" is a soft and enjoyable surf track with picturesque coastal warmth and an attractive melody line.

Journey To The Stars dotdotdotdot
Surf (Instrumental)

The Ventures' drum-driven "Journey To The Stars" is pretty straightforward, yet despite being a not-to-evolved cover, it has a very enjoyable sound and warmth about it. Excellent.

Storm Surf dotdotdotdot
Surf (Instrumental)

This mid tempo number oozes the warmth and a summer shore break. The melody progression is Dire Straits inspired in sound and structure, and reminds me that I always wondered why they never did a surf album. Quite a nice song!

Baja dotdotdotdot
Surf (Instrumental)

This is a rhythmic and plucky rendition of the Lee Hazelwood most familiar surf instro. It's even more damped and suave than Half Tribe's version, with warm tone and excellent damped rhythms. Infectious and very cool.

Diamond Head dotdotdotdot
Surf (Instrumental)

With an almost eleki nod to the Ventures, the Breakaways deliver "Diamond Head" with Nokie-isms in tact, and with poise and grace not found in other versions. Very cool.

Island Of The Sea dotdotdot
Surf (Instrumental)

Soft island chords and acoustic guitar, wistful and almost distant lead guitar, and a very well suited rhythm section combine with a pretty Endless Summer soundtrack-styled melody to produce a very pretty summer scene in your imagination.

Out Of Limits dotdotdot
Surf (Instrumental)

A warmly fluid performance of Mike Gordon's classic studio surf track. It is much more sincere than the original, and the modern bridge is very cool.

Shark Breath dotdotdotdot
Surf (Instrumental)

Big teeth coming through the brine to make your acquaintance. Very pretty, vibrato shimmered, whammy liquefied, and damped rhythm menaced. "Shark Breath" is a very attractive song.

Longboard Lesson dotdotdotdot
Surf (Instrumental)

A bit of wah wah makes the curl seem unbalanced, perhaps to imply a beginner's unsteadiness on the board. "Longboard Lesson" is a semi-lazy day adventure close to shore. Some great licks, and some very pleasant passages.

Penetration dotdotdot
Surf (Instrumental)

The Pyramids' often covered "Penetration" is nicely done, with solid rhythm and subdued Ventures added chords.

Apache dotdotdotdot
Surf (Instrumental)

Softer than the Sonny James vocal, more fluid than the Jorgen Ingmann version, and warmer than most other covers. This soft treatment shows the power of the writing, and the excellent sense of arranging that the Breakaways apply to their material. Very pleasing.

The Curl's Revenge dotdotdot
Surf (Instrumental)

A bit of beatnik cool in the bass line, a touch of "Tequila" rhythm, and a simple and affective guitar riff, with a very clean sound. "The Curl's Revenge" is a pretty surf instro with a bit of a hook.

The Crusher dotdotdotdot
Surf (Instrumental)

A quirky rhythm that's ska-inspired without being ska, and a warm summer melody line gives "The Crusher" a Caribbean sound, while retaining its surf center. Very cool. No, it's not the Nova's wrestling vocal, not the Atlantic's screamer.

Percussionator dotdotdotdot
Surf (Instrumental)

Drums are center stage in the tradition of Adrian and the Sunsets, but with more guitar work. The tribal drum break is very Cozy Cole inspired, and a joy to hear. Great!

Surfin' Sam dotdotdotdot
Surf (Instrumental)

"Surfin' Sam" is a modern instro aurally reminiscent of the Malibooz' "Tower 9," and with similar power and attack. An excellent song with an aggressive surf edge.