Phil Dirt - Reverb Central - PO Box 1609, Felton, CA 95018-1609 USA Collection: Garage Punk Unknowns Volume Six 1961-1966
|This is a very cool comp. When it came out, most of this material was rare or largely unheard. Now, it's all available on CD, most from masters. All of side two is surf, except for one track.|
Picks: Squad Car, Beaver Patrol, Avalanche, Riptide, Surfers Mood, 4th Dimension, The Birds, The Red Headed Flea, War Of The Worlds
Track by Track Review
This is THEE Eddie & the Showmen song, and their second single. Written by Paul Johnson, it totally shreds. The best news is it finally appears in stereo.
Many of the Surf bands (maybe most) from Southern California were teen bands, some not old enough do drive yet. The Blazers were a Fullerton teen band that just ripped. The recordings this band made were among the hottest most energetic of any band of the era, including the New Dimensions and the Fender Four. "Beaver Patrol" was banned here and there due to it's obvious slang meaning. It's raucous and mean and high energy. It ranks right up there with their incredible "Bangalore" and their beautiful "Sound Of Mecca."
Is this one of the versions of the Handful of Fives et al with Skip and Terry Hand who were also part of the Eddie and the Showmen legacy? Doesn't matter I guess. It's fast, furious, pure surf madness, with a wailin' sax in a few verses under the lead guitar. Great picking and fiery attack.
From the introductory cry of "Riptide," this classic monster shreds mercilessly. Minneapolis was home to this talented band, where they recorded this track in 1963. It totally shreds - did I say that already. This is one hot monster! Based on a super simple riff, it employs the tried and true but rare technique of playing behind the bridge with extreme reverb. Great!
"Surfers Mood" owes it's existence to Link Wray's "Rumble," and as such is not particularly interesting. This is the B-side to the incredible "Surf Bunny."
From the opening Theremin through the totally infectious rhythm guitar, this surf tune features three guitars, a damped super reverbed classic surf rhythm, a dryer chord playing rhythm, and a vibratoed and reverbed lead which issues sounds from behind the bridge while not playing a lead melody. Totally weird and utterly cool.
Cool semi surf riff with really cool effects from the echo plex and the outboard reverb, and a menacing meanness. The chunky damped surf rhythm guitar keeps it in focus, and the drums provide the thunder. Very cool track.
The Red Headed Flea
Fifties sax works, and gimmicky screams. Not very interesting.
Guitar War (Instrumental)
A hefty title and little else. None too interesting. Thick racing pace and stinging guitars, but not much melody. Still, the "battle" scene on guitars is pretty cool.