Phil Dirt - Reverb Central - PO Box 1609, Felton, CA 95018-1609 USA
The Faraons - Sunset Surfdotdotdot
artworkItaly's Faraons first release is mostly a collection of covers that are less common. Some are downright compelling, like a peak into a small venue 40-45 years ago. They recorded this live in the studio. The demo sound does not detract from some fine performance and a genuine feeling of vintage instro.
Picks: Sunset Surf, Brozen Rock, Oh Yeah!, Russian Roulette, Jest Smoochin', Steel Pier, Rollin' Ball #1, Turkish Coffee, Road Runnah, Intoxica, Baha Ree Bah, The Sneak

Track by Track Review

Sunset Surf dotdotdot
Surf (Instrumental)

This is a spiffy track with lots of energy and flair. Well done, with a gritty sound that's relatively dry. Listed as "Sunset Surf" (Truants), this is actually a cover of the Intrepides' 1965 single "Golash" (Mascio 120). The title was likely taken from one the many bootlegs that don't bother to get track lists correct. Too bad it's also the title track!

Brozen Rock dotdotdot
Surf (Instrumental)

"Brozen Rock" is a bouncy and fun track with a rolling beat and a European melody line. The whammy adds a watery feel, and the bass brings in a galloping open country edge.

Oh Yeah! dotdotdot
Surf (Instrumental)

The Frantics' "Oh Yeah!" is done in a reverent sax-lead way. You can feel the grins as the Faraons play this obscuro.

Russian Roulette dotdotdotdot
Surf (Instrumental)

Perhaps the only dry take on the Nevegans' "Russian Roulette," which is interesting in itself, since they did it more or less dry. Very much like the original, and very fun.

Jest Smoochin' dotdotdot
Surf (Instrumental)

King Curtiss' "Jest Smoochin'" is a sax number with period suave and a sense of the sleazy side of the street. Very nicely done.

Steel Pier dotdotdotdot
Surf (Instrumental)

A completely original sounding cover of the Impacts' great "Steel Pier." There's something very attractive about the primitive nature of this. The sax honks and the guitar warbles.

Rollin' Ball #1 dotdotdotdot
Surf (Instrumental)

This original is slow and whammified for a dark surf instro with an almost Centurions sound to it. Moody and foreboding, like the huge circular sloshing of the sea after a major quake on the coast.

Turkish Coffee dotdotdotdot
Surf (Instrumental)

This is one kookie and very likable Middle Eastern surf swirler. It's the sort of song that you can't resist grinning over, even if you're a music snob. Excellent!

Road Runnah dotdotdotdot
Surf (Instrumental)

One of only two instros originally from the Road Runners, and seldom covered, "Road Runnah" is pure surf magic. Entirely enjoyable and infectious.

Credited to the Pyramids on the sleeve because when London picked up national distribution of the Pyramids LP from Best, they added this track. The Road Runners were a different band that issued a couple of singles.

Intoxica dotdotdot
Surf (Instrumental)

Neal Nissensen and Robert J. Hafner gave us "Intoxica" (also titled "Intoxico") via a number of vintage bands. This is very much in the vein of Bob Vaught and the Renegades, but a little less boxy.

Baha Ree Bah dotdotdotdot
Surf (Instrumental)

The Faraons cover the Nocturnes' arrangement of the Trademarks' "Baha Ree Bah" with reverence and style. The sax parts are spot-on, and the overall impact is superb, though significantly dryer than either vintage recording.

The Sneak dotdot
Surf (Instrumental)

"The Sneak" is a late fifties style, somewhat hokey number with a honkin' sax and quirky gimmick. Fun, but unremarkable.