Phil Dirt - Reverb Central - PO Box 1609, Felton, CA 95018-1609 USA
CHUM - Super Not Cooldotdotdotdot
artworkCan you say in your face? CHUM specialize in heavy, distortion based, metal infused surf. It's been too long, but with Super Not Cool, it's been well worth the wait for a new CD. Lots of great heavy stuff here. It's a long way from the traditional surf sound, but it is all about the surf! Recommended!
Picks: Super Not Cool, Pencil Fight, The Undertoad, Private Idaho, Regulah Customah, Type-D, Corned-Beef & Whiskey, India Pale Ale, Tijuana Taco, ...We Salute You

Track by Track Review

Super Not Cool dotdotdot
Surf (Instrumental)

"Super Not Cool" is a heavy surf riffer with great drums and bass and dark chords. It relentlessly punctures the still of the afternoon with the punishing power of storm surf.

Pencil Fight dotdotdotdot
Surf (Instrumental)

"Pencil Fight" is a hard driving onslaught of dark textures and dangerous chords. The drums rock, the bass grumbles, and the guitar just doesn't let go. The break is very cool, with it's rung out chords and more gentle sound, followed by slightly Hendrixian lines. Aggressive and menacing.

The Undertoad dotdotdotdot
Surf (Instrumental)

A modest tempo, stereo metal chords and textures, and bass rumble lay out a simple but strong melody line. "The Undertoad" is cool and powerful, and verges on catchy, which is a feat for a thick textured loud assault.

Private Idaho dotdotdotdot
Surf (Instrumental)

Spuds flow as CHUM marches relentlessly through The B-52's' "Private Idaho." Their heavy handed approach completely reinvents the song, yet it retains its charm.

Regulah Customah dotdotdotdot
Surf (Instrumental)

Delicate percussion introduces what becomes a heavy stereo guitar attack. "Regulah Customah" is on the long side, has relentless energy, and some really cool whammy dips. Very powerful.

Type-D dotdotdotdot
Surf (Instrumental)

"Type-D" is heavy and melodic, with powerful playing all around. The rolling drums and bass in the bridges are just superb, and the guitar never let's go. This is a fine composition with a superb arrangement and very strong playing all around.

Corned-Beef & Whiskey dotdotdot
Surf (Instrumental)

"Corned-Beef & Whiskey" has an almost country flirtation about it. Its easy gate and semi-clean textures on the guitars give it an almost playful structure. Quite fun.

India Pale Ale dotdotdotdotdot
Surf (Instrumental)

Sitarish guitar lines beautifully play against tablas. "India Pale Ale" is over the top cool! It immediately captures you. Great writing, cool guitar textures, psychedelic leanings, and exceptional production. I love this!

Tijuana Taco dotdotdotdotdot
Surf (Instrumental)

"Tijuana Taco" is a superb song. CHUM played this when they visited The Pit back in 2003. The review remains the same, but the richness of the song has grown.

Spanish lace flows in the breeze of a summer afternoon. A tasteful bit of writing with a sad edge and wistful feel. The distant guitar is on the haunting side due its recessive placement in the mix. On this song, that seems to work.

...We Salute You dotdotdotdot
Surf (Vocal)

This is a fun track... a long list of thank you's read above a somewhat Captain Beefheart/psychedelic backtrack. Brilliant! I'd like to hear the instro out front!