Phil Dirt - Reverb Central - PO Box 1609, Felton, CA 95018-1609 USA
Collection: Gnarly Reefdotdotdotdotdot
artworkFundraiser CD number five chock full of live and unreleased music by 21 surfbands from far and wide. A full 73 minutes of instant surf gratification. Lots of different sounds in many different corners of the surf genre. The bands donated their tracks to KFJC for this fundraiser CD. Every last one of these tracks have been released nowhere else. Most are from KFJC live sessions. All rule!
Picks: Miserlou, Sidewalk Surfer, Hammond's, Heavy On The Cream, Emmylou Rides Clarence West And Then South, Tijuana Tango, Stalkin' Mermaid, Red Tide, Switchblade Comb, Swedish Rhapsody, High Wall, Latin Soul, King Kong, Hava Nagila / Oda To Yoda, Byron Bay Taxi Ride, Cutlass Supreme, Ali Baba, Steamer Lane, Lone Surfer, The Happy Song, Trick Or Treat

Track by Track Review


Miserlou dotdotdotdotdot
Surf (Instrumental)

The signature surf shredder is revamped under the machine gun playing of this potent trio. Fiery is an understatement... rapid double picking, bursts of glissandoes, dissonant whammied chords, and raw power. Amazing!

Sidewalk Surfer dotdotdotdotdot
Surf (Instrumental)

This is one of the great uncovered tunes, first cut by the Challengers, with John Anderson sitting in. This is pristine, highly rhythmic, chunky, and drenched with splendid glissandoes. What a great track!

Hammond's dotdotdotdotdot
Surf (Instrumental)

This is a brand new song from Soave Loco. It's intense yet silky, showing off the glistening curl at "Hammond's" where sunny afternoons glide away on the face of many a glassy wall. Really infectious in a warm soul way...

Heavy On The Cream dotdotdot
Surf (Instrumental)

A funky bass line opens this cool number. It has a jazzy feel, almost exotic, maybe even Pink Panther-ish. ItŐs pretty enough, and it eventually yields to a more adventurous thing that has mystery and progressive ideas. Way more sophisticated than your average surf tune.

Emmylou Rides Clarence West And Then South dotdotdotdotdot
Surf (Instrumental)

In a complete left turn of Mermen Highway, "Emmylou Rides Clarence West And Then South" rides high on a cactus rhythm with an infectious beat and remarkably fun picking. Totally cool, stretched out western adventure... gives new meaning to "cow-abunga!"

Tijuana Tango dotdotdotdotdot
Surf (Instrumental)

Warm sunbelt surf, lapped with steel and bongos, and topped with horns. "Tijuana Tango" is a slow and saucy tune with a magical warmth and polish. Exotica, surf, and cruise liner carefree days abound.

Stalkin' Mermaid dotdotdotdot
Surf (Instrumental)

Live from FV Music Festival in Slovenia, the Bitch Boys romp through "Stalkin' Mermaid" with speed and edge, firing off double picked leads on high registers over a playful rhythm track. Hot track!

Red Tide dotdotdotdot
Spy Surf (Instrumental)

A bit of the whammy and then the guitar issues a melodic riff while the organ plays beneath. Great drums and solid bass. Infectious and rock solid, with nice harmonics and a friendly feel. A few tasty glissandoes as well.

Switchblade Comb dotdotdotdotdot
Surf (Instrumental)

Yikes, what a great tune. Unusual, original, crisp, and endearing. "Switchblade Comb" is dramatic without being pompous, and sports some really good playing. The catchy riff is cool, and the bridges very effective.

Swedish Rhapsody dotdotdotdot
Surf (Instrumental)

Proving you can surf up anything with a solid melody, this unusual choice for a cover was chosen by rhythm guitarist Roger Rush. John Anderson's great delicate picking combined with a real Swedish sense gives this an irresistible draw. Wonderful.

High Wall dotdotdotdot
Surf (Instrumental)

This is a fine and intense cover of the Wailers' "High Wall." With great reverb and grungy intensity, the Dynotones make a nasty monster even nastier. Whew! The feedback decay at the end is perfect.

Latin Soul dotdotdotdotdot
Surf (Instrumental)

Neither the Original Surfaris nor the Sentinals had any idea where the Manatees were going to take this. Demented string bending, major crunch, excellent drums, warbly theremin, and excellent full bodied sound. The arrangement is very powerful. The whammy gives it a swimming pool feel, and the theremin and "Shaft" guitar chops in the break create an interesting sidebar to this powerful infectious track.

King Kong dotdotdotdotdot
Major Mondo Metal Drudge Monster Movie Soundscape (Instrumental)

This huge lumbering monster track stands head and shoulders above anything their predecessors have ever done. It is stunning, and extremely powerful. From it's metal drudge monster movie soundtrack homage to it's twangy guitar leads and speed-picked melody, "King Kong" simply pummels!

Hava Nagila / Oda To Yoda dotdotdotdot
Aboriginal Surf (Instrumental)

"Hava Nagila" has not been handed this thrashy a treatment before. Definitely punk, certainly short board surf, and undoubtedly aggressive. It comes in two parts, separated by a soft solo guitar line. As the song comes to an end, Chachi breaks into his classic Star Wars poem "Oda To Yoda." A total workout!

Byron Bay Taxi Ride dotdotdotdot
Aboriginal Surf (Instrumental)

"Byron Bay Taxi Ride" reminds me a little of the Gondwanaland sound, with surf guitar and writhing rhythmic percussion. Gloomy, atmospheric, yet somehow promising better days ahead. A very nice track.

Cutlass Supreme dotdotdotdot
Surf (Instrumental)

Dedicated to one tug boat of a car, "Cutlass Supreme" floats down the highway with a semi nerve-shattering dissonance, a kind of something's not right with the world feel. There's a taste of seventies blacksploitation flick about the track as well. The howling feedback end with it's demented string bending makes you feel like they just gave you something, and you don't know what it is, but you're in for a bad trip.

Ali Baba dotdotdotdot
Surf (Instrumental)

Dave and the Customs' "Ali Baba" has not often been covered, but is considered by some to be the "other" "Miserlou." Camp OJ drives it hard with lots of flair. This band lived a short life, but cut a mean rug on stage with aggressive surf. This is a somewhat murky soundboard tape of the band in its prime.

Steamer Lane dotdotdotdot
Surf (Instrumental)

This fluid surf track moves like an eddy, flowing with undulating rhythm and an optimistic sound. Double picked guitar and lots of fine glissandoes. The melody feels like SoCal surf, giving the track an infectious sunny day appeal.

Lone Surfer dotdotdotdot
Surf (Instrumental)

In the beginning, there was Da Monz. After numerous shifts, they became the Berzerkers, then Dino, Desperate and Chilly, then Identity Crisis (no wonder), and finally Disgraceland. Recorded on "Surf's Up!" on June 6th, 1992, Dino Francesconi and the lads cover a very obscure surf track called "Lone Surfer" written by Joe "Poke Salad Annie" South. It's particularly cool with it's pumping keyboard bass line and totally fun melody.

The Happy Song dotdotdotdot
Surf (Instrumental)

Intensely optimistic and a little punkoidal, yet with a stock yard feel. Excellent guitarology from an aggressive Brian Pool, backed by the characteristically strong rhythm section of the Torpedoes. A blast.

Trick Or Treat dotdotdotdot
Surf (Instrumental)

It seems fitting to close with this timely seasonal fave. There just isn't a better Halloween surf epic than this. Lumbering, slithery, eerie, and angular, interrupted with knocks at the door and cries of "trick or treat " and screams. Twisted and delightful. This band was something to see and hear. This song has never before been issued in ant form.