Phil Dirt - Reverb Central - PO Box 1609, Felton, CA 95018-1609 USA
The Fat Man and Team Fat - surf.comdotdotdotdot
artworkThis is an advance CD-R of an album due soon from the legendary writer/producer of numerous video game soundtracks. Now, don't go gettin' any bizarro ideas about their size, or nuthin'. Unlike the Fat Boys who were, these geezers are mere fence rails, and cowboy fence rails at that. How skinny are they? They gotta wiggle all around just to fill their britches. When the walk fast, they hum! The original working title of the CD was Communist Surf Music, but then Fats (that's what his friends call him) changed his mind and renamed it to be more in with the times. Now, you be thinking that just because these California born & bred Texan Cowboy dressed mechanical bull riders would be restricted to the studio, what with being mainly video game music generators, but you'd be wrong. They headlined the lounge at the recent CES Show (a geeky gathering of video heads and product hocking), billed as Surfin at the CES and played a bunch-o-twangin' tunes. Their music sometimes contains cheesy game sounds and wimpy synths and odd drum machines, and real guitars, bass and drums.
Picks: Troika, Disco Porno (First Disco), Tronamatrix, Kropotnik Fanfare, Ivanna's Thrash, Ya-Ta-Da, Esoteric Bulldozer, Tronamatrix Faster, Quota Boatman, Quota Boatman Fast, Gameboat, MisirCue, Chopping Wood, Hey Farfisa / Lidmilla's Fantasy, Jim's Song, Fast Wa Wa Wa, Salt Pecans, Greshinka's Fantasy, Ziggy's Fantasy / Marching To Joe's / Volga Boatman / Savannah Slump, Bucket-O-Chicken, Chet Slow, Space Jive, Memphis Texas, I'm A Fat Man, Mast On Pen, Surfin' USSR, Too Much Love, Thankin' Drankin' and Stankin', Tag

Track by Track Review

Troika dotdotdotdot
Surf Ventures (Instrumental)

A big Ventures sound about it, not like "Walk, Don't Run," but that PNW feel none the less. It is overlaid with great and surfy feel via an Echoplexed second guitar. This way cool surf number is overdubbed with cheap live crowd sounds like the Surfin' The CES tapes. The interplay between the lead and rhythm is quite nice. This and other tracks here have names obvious leftover from the original theme and working title Communist Surf Music.

Disco Porno (First Disco) dotdotdot
Acoustic Sequenced (Instrumental)

Uses a really bizarre drum machine sound under a decidedly Greek melody with dry lead and an acoustic rhythm parroting the lead and barely audible, giving the whole thing an image of Cypress or Athens.

Tronamatrix dotdotdot
Funk (Instrumental)

A funky song with a strange attraction.

Kropotnik Fanfare dotdotdot
Calliope (Instrumental)

A calliope and talk about a hanging scene. Later part of “Ivanna And Kropotnik.”

Ivanna's Thrash dotdotdot
Surf (Instrumental)

A very short incidental thing that would be a GREAT surf song if recorded full length. Great! Cool tones and treatments. Later titled “Kropotnik And Ivanna” when merged with “Kropotnik Fanfare.”

Ya-Ta-Da dotdotdot
Cassio Cheese (Instrumental)

Cheesy keyboardage like the nerd at Radio Shack would groove to while demonstrating the latest sub-miniature electronic keyboard for junior at Christmas. It segues into a generic Metal climax.

Esoteric Bulldozer dotdot
Blues (Instrumental)

Very heavy number with Bluesy chunka chunka...

Tronamatrix Faster dotdotdot
Rock (Instrumental)

Despite it's name, not the same song as track 4 sped up. It's a heavy number like a band might use or warm up, or more likely you might hear in a film as a car drives down a country road while the camera slowly moves back farther and farther as the credits roll. Nifty!

Quota Boatman dotdotdotdot
Surf (Instrumental)

The first of numerous liberal borrowings of "The Volga Boatman" that makes you want a whole rendition. What a great song to surf up! Seem to be really part of tracks 11 & 12 as a set.

Quota Boatman Fast dotdotdotdot
Surf (Instrumental)

The second variation on "The Volga Boatman" theme, more song-like, played twice.

Gameboat dotdotdotdot
Surf (Instrumental)

The third variation on "The Volga Boatman" theme, again with slightly different tones.

MisirCue dotdotdot
Surf (Instrumental)

Glissandoes and little hooks everywhere, but too short and not a song... bizarre and wonderful.

Chopping Wood dotdotdot
Blues (Instrumental)

A bluesy big stage number.

Hey Farfisa / Lidmilla's Fantasy dotdotdot
Sequenced Surf (Instrumental)

A really odd techno-funk-surf thing with a strange "Love Boat" ending. This bizarre almost Surf Punks number is punctuated with occasional surf guitars... cool!

Jim's Song dotdotdot
Country (Instrumental)

An instro that reminded me a bit of Cat Mother & the All Night News Boys.

Fast Wa Wa Wa dotdotdot
Harmonica Jazz Funk (Instrumental)

Bizarre harmonica and jazz guitar and funky bass lines.

Salt Pecans dotdotdot
Fireballs Country (Instrumental)

A plunky guitar number, Echoplexed and hinting of a summit meeting between the Fireballs, Joe Walsh, and Buck Owens, with Jimmy Haskell producing.

Greshinka's Fantasy dotdotdot
Cartoon (Instrumental)

Springtime For Elmer Fudd.

Ziggy's Fantasy / Marching To Joe's / Volga Boatman / Savannah Slump dotdotdotdot
Military Pump Surf Fairy Tale (Instrumental)

Beginning on the White House lawn, this strange track wanders from "Hail To The Chief" into a mighty strange pumping beat through yet another brief but stellar "Volga Boatman" before melting into a British fairy tale Lawrence Welk & the Lennon Sisters TV thing. Amazing.

Bucket-O-Chicken dotdotdot
Chicken Bop (Instrumental)

A Nashville Chicken Boppin' hickoid thrash. You know what, I just got a vision of Los Straitjackets doing this... scary!

Chet Slow dotdotdot
Commercial (Instrumental)

A commercial sounding guitar melody that could be a really cool whole song with the right tonality... like surf.

Space Jive dotdotdot
Pop (Instrumental)

Flowing melody and textures.

Memphis Texas dotdotdot
Surf Jive (Instrumental)

More "Volga Boatman" and a jive number.

I'm A Fat Man dotdotdotdot
Surf Blues (Instrumental)

Giant variation on "I'm A Man." It's a Blues stereotype that's so familiar it's killer. Hey white boy, play that thing!

Mast On Pen dotdotdot
Surf (Instrumental)

A variation on "Penetration" played with grodie tones. The mast?.. well, nearly inaudible whispered under the intro are the words "Masturbation On Penetration." Go figure!

Surfin' USSR dotdot
Southern Blues Boogie (Instrumental)

So, why is this Southern boogie blues called "Surfin' USSR?"

Too Much Love dotdotdot
Nasty Blues (Instrumental)

A very low down and nasty do-the-deed sluggish Blues monster. You can almost hear Barry White doing this...

Thankin' Drankin' and Stankin' dotdotdotdot
Blues (Instrumental)

This is a monster blues track. The name says it all.

Tag dot
Commercial (Instrumental)

Extremely short stinger.