Phil Dirt - Reverb Central - PO Box 1609, Felton, CA 95018-1609 USA
|The tracks on this from-vinyl bootleg comp have mostly made it to CD, though some still remain in the vaults. Some are album tracks, some are singles. many are very cool, and if you're without these, it's worth a few bucks. There are a couple cheesy vocals, and the disc closes with a KIMN logo.|
Picks: Banzai Washout, Undercurrent, Steel Pier, Surfin' Dockside, Shootin' Beavers, Surfin' Wild, Surf Breaker, Latin'ia, Devil Surfer, Ghost Guitars, The Whip, Breakwater, Kalani Wipeout, There's A Creature In The Surfer's Lagoon, Phantom Surfer, Soul Surf, Migraine
Track by Track Review
Steve Douglas wrote this classic and plays the raging sax. Dick Dale later covered it. The melody is hot, the rhythm is driving, the drums inspired, and the whole thing rocks. The brilliant ringing tones and the speed are marvelous. One of the great singles. Billy Strange played the fiery lead.
Link Wray Surf (Instrumental)
Based on Link Wray's "Rumble," it's slower, vibrato laden, and ominous in a shimmering tremolo kinda way.
Fellow Central Coast surf band the Impacts laid this down on their classic Wipe Out album. Martin Brown's marvelous lap steel is not here, but the band has found a way to replace the bottleneck slither with energy and surf licks that makes it work just fine. A solid cover with an intensity not found on most of tracks here. From vinyl.
Spaghetti Western (Instrumental)
Merging modern guitar tones and Enio Morricone's penchant for women coral accompaniment, this fine short blast (1:32) is downright infectious. It's cowpoke rhythm and beat rolls right along, and the cool cactus sounds sneak right into your saddlebags without even a whimper. Fine track.
Spunky surf R&B fun jammin', like a honkin' sax party anthem with guitar domination. Perfect for a frat party.
Jazz Surf (Instrumental)
This was a single for the Deltas. It is very Hammond oriented, and quite a melodic jazz combo number.
Nervebreaker Surf (Instrumental)
Totally unique tense number with an infectious melody line and a quick tempo. Really great!
This slow and tentative version of this most gorgeous of all vintage surf tunes is odd at best, with almost painful whammy, and a growly sound. Interesting, but not great.
This rare single featured early work by future Walker Brothers guitarist Scott Engel. It's more like a sped up Monarchs than pure surf, but it's infectious and punctuated with the best Devil's laugh on a surf disc. It's rhythmic and mighty cool.
This ultra rare surf single employs cheesy Bela Lagosi words and ghoulish laughs. The instro is really basic, but pretty infectious with its unusual bass line and surf guitar. Great drums, cool guitar, and lots of charm. Just too fun.
This ranting track fires with all barrels, double picks the guitar at times, and pounds the drums. It's not surf, but the energy is certainly in the pocket, and the twin saxes reminds me of the Crossfires... just a little less chunky.
This is a pretty unusual surf instro, with a simple riff that's not like most surf tunes, yet works well in the genre. The sax break is surfable, and the picked bass really nice. Infectious and simple, "Breakwater" is a really nice find.
This Original Surfaris tune is well done, fuller sounding than the original and much better recorded. It is from an unreleased master. Well played, it shows off a maturity on the instrument beyond the tender years of the player.
There's A Creature In The Surfer's Lagoon
Spaghetti Western (Instrumental)
This short introductory spaghetti western theme is spiffy, to say the least. It sports the required Italian twang coupled with modern edge. It's all of 42 seconds long, but has a lasting and powerful attack.
Totally studio... weirdness, dry energy-free drums and bass, and useless guitar noodling... hot sax. From the sound, I'd guess the musicians are Plas Johnson or Steve Douglas on sax and Hal Blaine on drums. Jus so so.
This is a piano and guitar riff number with a cruisin' feel and some mighty quick pickin'. Tape delay replaces reverb on the lead guitar, and the lack of focus leaves it in the jam category. Having said that, it's quite listenable and a solid example of surf rhythm jams that had an attraction. Works really well.
Sax Plucky Guitar (Instrumental)
Sax driven tune with a plucky rhythm guitar. The melody is not good, little more than a progression. That said, after many years, it's still a very cool little track with great drums and catchy pickin'.