Phil Dirt - Reverb Central - PO Box 1609, Felton, CA 95018-1609 USA
Collection: Thai Beat A Go-Go Volume 1dotdot
artworkTwenty tracks from noisy vinyl sources, all issued in Thailand in the mid sixties. The vocals are strange enough, but it's the instros that capture the imagination. Four instrumentals with varying surf influences and guitars from Johnny's Guitar and two organ based instros from the Son Of P.M.. These songs are all quite magnetic in their own way, and all are intensely commanding and tribal, while being dramatic and steeped in rock 'n' roll and traditional Thai cultural sounds.
Picks: Kratae, Bangsaen '66, Boongatanyon, James Bond Theme, Supannahong, Klongyao

Track by Track Review


Kratae dotdotdotdot
Surf (Instrumental)

This is a spooky track, opening with calls and whoops and hollers over tribal drums. This yields to a tropical exotic beat that runs under guitar that's more or less surf, though the melody surely is not. Intense and loud, with thundering bass. very mysterious and dangerous.

Bangsaen '66 dotdotdot
Surf (Instrumental)

"Bangsaen '66" starts off like "Telstar," but quickly becomes a tribal romp through dangerous waters where the rocks are as alluring as the curl. In the third verse, the surf guitar is very evident. Very intriguing.

Boongatanyon dotdotdot
Surf (Instrumental)

"Boongatanyon" sports glissandoes and surf guitar, and lead vibes. It's a jazzy song with surf influences and tropical weirdness. What a strange track! Enticing and annoying at the same time.

James Bond Theme dotdotdotdot
Surf (Instrumental)

Well, if you took Jimmy Bond out of his comfortable British bed and abandoned him in the jungle, he might want to hear this intensely original version of his theme. The lead guitar sounds like it's in need of a ska second guitar, but instead, it's accompanied by combo organ and tribal drums.

Supannahong dotdotdotdot
Surf (Instrumental)

Slow and Oriental, with an almost David Axelrod feel and sound, "Supannahong" sadly flows like a funeral procession. Very dark and unsettling. This surely would be as cool a surf instro as "High Wall."

Klongyao dotdotdotdot
Surf (Instrumental)

Evil doings in the temple of doom, where surf meets sacred fears in an intense duel. Splashy and exotic, with an intensely loud sound. The melody is a long way from pretty, yet is very attractive in its own way.