Phil Dirt - Reverb Central - PO Box 1609, Felton, CA 95018-1609 USA
Collection: The Continental Magazine - Issue 15 CD Insertdotdotdotdot
artworkThis is a pretty darn solid set of mostly surf on a CD that comes with issue 12 of Continental Magazine. The two vocals are Monkeys With Machine Guns' "Frying Pan" and the Subway Surfers' "New Girl."
Picks: The Astroglides - Fanatic Mule Ride, The Barbwires - You Sun Of A Beach, East Coast Tremors - Sandblaster, HJ - The Man With The Surfodot, The Illuminoids - Funeral For Queen Mary, Los Kahunas - 6G15, The Lava Rats - Peligroso, Meshugga Beach Party - S'Vivon, The Nematoads - Deadwood, The Neptunes - Bethany Rides Again, RetroActive Gamma Rays - The Last Gamma Ray, The Reverb Syndicate - The Martini Cluster, Secret Samurai - Don't Fear The Reverb, The Sidemen - Peligro, The Silhouettes - Tornado, The Incredible Mr. Smith - Get Out Of The Van!, Speedball Jr. - Le Chat Noir, The 'Verb - Bikini Sunrise

Track by Track Review


The Astroglides - Fanatic Mule Ride dotdotdotdot
(Instrumental)

Fast and brimming with dark danger, "Fanatic Mule Ride" is very strong. Its dark soundscape and flippant melody combine to create a magnetic punkoidal romp on the back of a most stubborn creature. Quite cool!

The Barbwires - You Sun Of A Beach dotdotdotdotdot
Surf (Instrumental)

Rhythmic clapping and acoustic guitar leads you into an infectious number that feels like the open road. Dribbled guitar lines, gypsy flair, and superb energy carry you through to the end. "You Sun Of A Beach" is a wonderful track with excellent writing and playing. The richness of the textures commands your ear.

East Coast Tremors - Sandblaster dotdotdotdotdot
Surf (Instrumental)

The melody line in "Sandblaster" is middle eastern, and the drama and power substantial. It's a compelling and engaging song with plenty to keep you interested. Aurally, it is reminiscent of The Treble Spankers in some ways. Very cool!

HJ - The Man With The Surfodot dotdotdotdot
Surf (Instrumental)

"The Man With The Surfodot" is a fun track with delicate muted guitar playfully dribbling out a dry melody line that's very compelling. This song is delicate, yet compelling. The pulsing bass line and drums are well suited for the melody, and the modern keys also seem to compliment the piece, adding a mysterious Mediterranean sense.

The Illuminoids - Funeral For Queen Mary dotdotdot
Euro Rock (Instrumental)

Big drama and Euro flair. "Funeral For Queen Mary" is very thematic and full. Whammy twang and intensity.

Los Kahunas - 6G15 dotdotdotdot
Surf (Instrumental)

"6G15" (the classic Fender outboard reverb tank) is a relatively pumping number with a dark sound. Not quite moody, but somewhat worrisome, with a fluid melody and very tuff low-E glissandos. Plenty of spunk here.

The Lava Rats - Peligroso dotdotdotdotdot
Surf (Instrumental)

Ultra fine drums, infectious reverb rhythm, rising power, and a stellar synergy bring "Peligroso" to fruition. Open road friendly, this track is well defined and very cool. It pulses and pumps below while the guitar fires off a fun and inviting surf melody line. Playful and strong.

Low Fidelity Jet-Set Orchestra - Modal Shopping Guide dotdot
Faux Psych (Instrumental)

Loungy rhythm and the swirling faux-psych of the bachelor pad encapsulate the listener in a delirious drone. It never really goes anywhere, except in the imagination.

Meshugga Beach Party - S'Vivon dotdotdotdot
Surf (Instrumental)

"S'Vivon" is a traditional Jewish folk song that gets new life as Meshugga Beach Party liquefy it with reverb. Great drums and a splashy lead guitar really make this fun. Excellent!

The Nematoads - Deadwood dotdotdot
Spaghetti Surf (Instrumental)

Lovely whammy gives "Deadwood" a spaghetti western flavor, while the balance of the song depends of rock and surf for inspiration. This is dramatic and visual, and the horn enhances the western theme appeal.

The Neptunes - Bethany Rides Again dotdotdotdot
Surf (Instrumental)

Bethany must be a spy, 'cuz her melody cries out for a safehouse as she goes about her daily espionage. For a break, she hits the surf in search of a perfect curl, and demonstrates why the song is called "Bethany Rides Again."

RetroActive Gamma Rays - The Last Gamma Ray dotdotdot
Surf (Instrumental)

Manic and dangerous, with a bit of psycho uneasiness. "The Last Gamma Ray" is dissonant and dark and splashy, with a lurid sense about it. Thrashy chords add a youthful innocence.

The Reverb Syndicate - The Martini Cluster dotdotdotdotdot
Surf (Instrumental)

Sparkling chords, an adventurous melody that portrays a coastal journey in summer, and a light hearted open air sound combine to create an uplifting journey. This is joyous and optimistic, with a very cool melody and excellent drums.

Secret Samurai - Don't Fear The Reverb dotdotdotdot
Surf (Instrumental)

Secret Samurai launch right into this fast and semi-dark number. Great guitar flair and a rock solid beat suggest storm surf and shortboard action. The sparkling guitar work and energy really work well together.

The Sidemen - Peligro dotdotdotdotdot
Surf (Instrumental)

The opening is an interesting exercise in syncopation between the drums and guitars, while the song is a charming and richly reverbed excursion into distant lands. The bridge reminds me of "Comin' Home Baby" slightly. A very cool track!

The Silhouettes - Tornado dotdotdot
Surf (Instrumental)

Shimmering tremolo guitar hauntingly opens, but yields quickly to a traditionally echo-guitar led number with a catchy sound and energy. "Tornado" is way more European than surf, yet there's something here that suggests the surf idiom.

The Incredible Mr. Smith - Get Out Of The Van! dotdotdotdotdot
Country Surf (Instrumental)

Gigantic drums energy and big twang rock really hard. "Get Out Of The Van!" is a superb rocker with spitfire glissandos and intense energy. All I ca say is wow!

Speedball Jr. - Le Chat Noir dotdotdotdotdot
Surf Rock (Instrumental)

This uncharacteristically calm and soothing track comes none too soon. I'm worn out by the intensity, and "Le Chat Noir" is a welcome respite. haunting and dark and moody, and even, dare I say it with Speedball Jr., gentle! Really cool!

The 'Verb - Bikini Sunrise dotdotdotdot
Surf (Instrumental)

Bit splashy optimism, with a touch of doubt, and a grand sound. This song ends with a wonderful reverb crash. With a title like "Bikini Sunrise," one expects a squirmy wakening from the nether world of dreams to a glorious vision, or the realization it's was only a dream.