Phil Dirt - Reverb Central - PO Box 1609, Felton, CA 95018-1609 USA
Los Caminos - Bullets For Breaddotdotdotdot
artworkWell now, if you're a fan of long whammified chords and somber imagery, Bullets For Bread is surely for you. Sweeping visuals, aquatic feelings, dark and moody, and quite satisfying.
Picks: Undertow, Thousand Steps, Cloak And Dagger, Slip Stream, Breakfast With The Astronauts, Spring 78, Irene And Her 7 Sisters, Old School, Kings Of The Boulevard, Dark Sea, Spaghetti Sunrise

Track by Track Review

Undertow dotdotdotdot
Dark Surf (Instrumental)

A dark chord progression gives a dangerous undercarriage to the relentlessly advancing lead. Perhaps more rock than surf, yet there's something heavy and aqueous about the aural nature or "Undertow." Pretty cool.

Thousand Steps dotdotdot
Dark Surf (Instrumental)

More or less a long chord twangster, "Thousand Steps" has a large and scenic sound. The melody progression is on the repetitious side, yet the chords' long decay and gentle whammy create a compelling scene of slow rolling swells.

Cloak And Dagger dotdotdot
Spy Surf (Instrumental)

There's a spy overtone to "Cloak And Dagger" that bridges the somewhat thick sound. It's not hard to get the espionage connection via the rhythm, nor to understand the danger of the melody line.

Slip Stream dotdotdotdotdot
Dark Surf (Instrumental)

"Slip Stream" comes on with a gentle but dangerous march into a grotto where the surf rolls around the edges of the rocks as if it's merely sling shot fodder. The very long shallow whammy chords add quite a bit of coolness. Superb!

Breakfast With The Astronauts dotdotdotdotdot
Dark Surf (Instrumental)

I'm sure the title is not in reference to the Boulder, Colorado band, but rather to adventurers in the ether. However, the melody references to "Endless Summer" are stark and very effective. Where the Sandals portrayed warm summer days, "Breakfast With The Astronauts" oozes wintery cold and dark gray surf viewed from outside the atmosphere. Excellent track!

Spring 78 dotdotdot
Spy Surf (Instrumental)

"Spring 78" creates a bit of a spy feeling, while remaining more or less in a a fluid rock environ. Hand claps add a kind of pop overlay. A fun track.

Irene And Her 7 Sisters dotdotdotdot
Krautrock Surf (Instrumental)

One might think that Irene was a bit of a seventies Kraut-rocker, with long sustain and big epic chords. "Irene And Her 7 Sisters" use whammy to create a surf feel, and lots of ambient reverb to ape the large howl of some of the bands that Conny Plank used to record, though this is surely less morose than many of those. I'm not sure that helps, but I am reminded of Epitaph's "Outside The Law," but significantly darker.

Old School dotdotdot
Whammy Riff Rock (Instrumental)

I'm not sure what the "Old School" is in reference to, unless it's in the riff rock of non-surfbands of the fifties and sixties. Nowhere near as interesting as the rest of this CD in my opinion.

Kings Of The Boulevard dotdotdot
Dark Surf (Instrumental)

In some ways, "Kings Of The Boulevard" seems out of place, much as "Old School" does, except that some of the transitions are watery and interestingly whammified, and they have magnetic emotional drama was well. At the end of the day, this works pretty well.

Dark Sea dotdotdotdotdot
Dark Surf (Instrumental)

Dungeonous sound delivers a darkened version of what is basically Meredith Wilson's "Till There Was You" from Music Man. Imagine the Mermen dragging out the sustain on an epic rendering of this melody and you'll get the idea. Wonderful!

Spaghetti Sunrise dotdotdotdotdot
Dark Surf (Instrumental)

With larger than life whammy and spatial reverb sustain, "Spaghetti Sunrise" paints a picture of a somber desert where survival is not always likely. Sweeping ambiance and engaging emotion. Those long whammified chords are superb!