Phil Dirt - Reverb Central - PO Box 1609, Felton, CA 95018-1609 USA
Collection: Zorba's Ridedotdotdotdot
artworkThis is a really great set of instros from across a couple of decades of surf with a Mediterranean theme. I can't find any source data, so I'm pretty darn sure this is one of those web collections nobody authorized.
Picks: The Beat Tornados - Aloha From The Crypt, Big Surf - Dune Dance, The Bullets - Pulsar, The Bitch Boys - Mach One, Fifty Foot Combo - Dimitrius, The Insect Surfers - Bouzouki, Diafana Krina - Kousko, The Overtones - Full Moon On Balboa Beach, Al Perros and the Lone Stars - Silver Surfer, The Phantom Four - Kyma, The Rockets - Sweet Magnolia's Curtain, Satan's Pilgrims - The Godfather, The Typhoons - Vskada, The Wangs - La Course de Manuel, The Woodies - Zorba's Last Ride

Track by Track Review


The Beat Tornados - Aloha From The Crypt dotdotdotdotdot
Surf (Instrumental)

This very slow version of "Miserlou" rivals Gallon Drunk's for sludge factor, but is much more listenable. It's big, slow, ponderous, and dripping with pick slides and moody sounds for five and a half minutes. Major coolness here.

Big Surf - Dune Dance dotdotdotdotdot
Middle Eastern Surf (Instrumental)

"Dune Dance" is a splendid track with many moods and amazing exotic imagery. The Middle east comes alive, and the infectious drums and bass rule! This is totally cool - more than that - it is superb!

The Blue Jeans - Wipe Out dotdot
Surf (Instrumental)

Goofy opening antics lead to a thin rendering of The Surfaris' "Wipe Out." It doesn't have any special attraction, and is just moderately played.

The Bullets - Pulsar dotdotdot
Surf (Instrumental)

Great grode muted reverbed rhythm, a superb bass line, and snappy snare drums provide support for a very cool melody. The horns in the middle add drama and mystery. Glissandos and splash complete the picture. A very nice track.

The Bitch Boys - Mach One dotdotdotdotdot
Surf (Instrumental)

Dueling double picked guitars wail on the bridges in this fine track. Rich Mediterranean rhythms and a catchy melody line combine for a solid surf ride at high speed. An excellent track!

The Ducky Boys - Yiotkmantaki dotdot
Surf (Instrumental)

"Yiotkmantaki" features a cool melody, though the breaks are lifted from "Malaguena." This has the makings of a great rippin' surf instro. Over reverbed, with a backtrack that is murky as can be.

Earth Bound - Mister Moto dotdotdot
Surf (Instrumental)

Bongos and sultry tone take "Mr. Moto" into the lounge. The keys are Leslied out and cheesy. This is a wholly original arrangement of Paul Johnson's classic song.

Fifty Foot Combo - Dimitrius dotdotdot
Surf (Instrumental)

This cover of the Atlantic's intense tune, with Cossack "Hey!" shouts and energetic screams of joy. Lots of energy and attack. A fine cover.

The Insect Surfers - Bouzouki dotdotdotdotdot
Desert Surf (Instrumental)

This tune is dedicated to the fabled classic Greek instrument that inspired Dick Dale's double picking. It combines the trad Greek ethic with surf guitar and bits of "Miserlou." A very strong track.

The Invisible Surfers - Akis Panou dotdotdot
Surf (Instrumental)

This very slow, moody number is mysterious and spooky. Dribbling lead guitar over long leaning bass notes sounds as if it's delivered from a predawn dream of "Miserlou" in slow motion. Then, half way through, it amps up, getting all murky and double picked. The second half is very loud, but lost in the murk of poor production with way too much track reverb.

Diafana Krina - Kousko dotdotdot
Surf (Instrumental)

Lovely guitar tone and an easy, almost military beat give the impression of spaghetti western without really being there. Whammy chords and lots of other surfisms. "Kousko" is a very nice track.

The Last Drive - Misirlou dotdotdot
Surf (Instrumental)

This is a trashy version of "Miserlou" with cruddy drum sound, boomy bass, and gritty guitar. Lots of spunk and attack.

The Overtones - Full Moon On Balboa Beach dotdotdot
Surf (Instrumental)

Ultra reverbed in a distant wash of surf with an outside the hall sound. "Full Moon On Balboa Beach" is a bit noodly, yet more than just a jam. The main riff is classic surf. This is not the Danny Amis band from the eighties, but rather are from Greece.

Al Perros and the Lone Stars - Silver Surfer dotdotdot
Surf (Instrumental)

Greta drums and bass rumble run beneath the melody riff from The Tradewinds' "Gotcha." There's more here though, with big whammy chords and a crisp break.

The Phantom Four - Kyma dotdotdotdot
Surf (Instrumental)

An exotic beat and mysterious melody delivered with slightly edged twango create a strong and compelling image of the sensual and forbidden. Superb whammy at the ends of the guitar lines add to the sense of faraway and somewhat dangerous places. Way cool!

The Rockets - Sweet Magnolia's Curtain dotdotdot
Surfabilly (Instrumental)

A superbly fun rockabilly beat gallops along, providing the basis for an infectious rhythm track. A well written melody and sparkling lead tone deliver the goods. Very nice.

Satan's Pilgrims - The Godfather dotdotdotdot
Surf (Instrumental)

Surfin' Mafiosi! It works. The Greek dance thing a la the Woodies "Zorba's Last Ride" is mighty cool. Very up tempo. Great

The Typhoons - Vskada dotdotdotdotdot
Surf (Instrumental)

An exotic and delicate guitar line leads you into a delightful rockin' track with very cool drums and bass, and totally infectious rhythms and lead guitar. "Vskada" is a really fine track!

The Wangs - La Course de Manuel dotdotdot
Surf (Instrumental)

Thundering drums, tuff guitar and shouts of "Hey" drive this angry surf stomp. Big and ominous, "La Course de Manuel" is an uneasy power drive on a cloudy afternoon along a stormy coastline.

The Woodies - Zorba's Last Ride dotdotdotdotdot
Fiddler On The Wave Surf (Instrumental)

Northern California:
From the fertile mind of Rick Escobar comes one of those mergers that leaves you saying of course. Take the nineties best trad surf bad, make 'em do the Greek line dance and yell "Hey!" a lot, and through in some Greek folk changes, and you have what should have been done eons ago. Totally wonderful!