Phil Dirt - Reverb Central - PO Box 1609, Felton, CA 95018-1609 USA
The Flaps - S/Tdotdotdotdot
artworkIf you like the breadth if stylistic juxtaposition that the Reventlos engage in, you will like this CD. The originals are augmented with a very offbeat set of covers from various genres. Very well arranged, recorded, and mixed. It's adventurous, and not really surf, but I liked it so much that I just had to review it here.
Picks: Astrolabia, The Fuzzard, Haph Kok Wah, Fear, Boogie Stop Shuffle, Lonely Woman, Water, Ouzo, Sexy Girls, House Of Mirrors, Mysterious Game, Big Wayne/Scrambler, Slumber Party

Track by Track Review

Astrolabia dotdotdotdot
Rock (Instrumental)

Great bass and drums support a very engaging melody in a dramatic and scenic arrangement. The melody line is fluid and a bit on the spaghetti western side, suggesting open range and dusty trails. Very cool!

The Fuzzard dotdotdotdot
Rock (Instrumental)

Great title. Super fuzz guitar plays against a funky soul backtrack of organ, bass and drums. If Booker T. and the MG's had been a rock band, they might have been like this. The wah-wah guitar part is so Hollywood soundtrack that it's scary. Nifty!

Haph Kok Wah dotdotdotdot
Rock (Instrumental)

Moody wah-wah reminds me of some seventies Kraut Rock, while the rest of the track calls to a more progressive style. A bit of country, a little psychedelic swirl, and a subtle grin. Very cool!

Fear dotdotdot
Rock (Instrumental)

Harry Lubin's cheesy TV theme "Fear" is haunted by keys and tape-delay weirdness. Very very moody, and perhaps the least cheesy of all the covers of this song. Prepared to dismiss it, I found myself quite engaged and grinning.

Boogie Stop Shuffle dotdotdot
Rock (Instrumental)

Charles Mingus' song is completely reinvented, becoming a circular riff rocker with a groovy bass line and jazzy guitars. The mix is thick and the arrangement quite original. In places, it reminds me of the Reventlos.

Lonely Woman dotdotdotdot
Rock (Instrumental)

This is a lovely and sadly romantic rendition of Ornette Coleman's "Lonely Woman." Silky guitar, long sustain, and a very good back track and arrangement give the song a very soothing character and a sense of rock heritage.

Water dotdotdotdot
Rock (Instrumental)

All that was scenic and emotional about the merger of rock and mariachi that began with the Tijuana Brass only laid a groundwork for this. If you take Dave Myers and the Surftones' "Surfers Theme" and combined it with a more sophisticated sound, you might arrive here. Wonderful!

Ouzo dotdotdotdot
Rock (Instrumental)

A "Tequila" rhythm track supports circular guitar lines that are very engaging. The wah-wah parts add suave, but it's the rest of the song that brings the grin. Too fun!

Sexy Girls dotdotdotdot
Rock (Instrumental)

"Sexy Girls" sways slowly and deliberately with an easy movement. Once the phasers come into play, it takes on a psychedelic swirl that's perfectly fitting. Moody and romantic at times, and intensely psychedelic at others.

House Of Mirrors dotdotdot
Rock (Instrumental)

"House Of Mirrors" is a very playful piece with its feet firmly planted in a jazz tradition, yet the big whammy twang of the guitars in the bridge give it so much more. Arranged with the kind of juxtaposition of incongruities that the Reventlos love to indulge, it's a very attractive track with a grin required.

Mysterious Game dotdotdot
Rock (Instrumental)

This has a decidedly Henry Mancini at the carnival sound to it. Tweaky and strange, eerie and demented, and yet endearing. The pumping keys say sideshow, the guitar says hallucination, and the bas and drums say moody depression. Quite something.

Big Wayne/Scrambler dotdotdot
Rock (Instrumental)

"Big Wayne/Scrambler" is a kind of riff rocker with go-go and biker tendencies. A bit psychedelic, but mostly jump'n'go-go with tongue in cheek.

Slumber Party dotdotdotdotdot
Rock (Instrumental)

This is a long slow psychedelic wash of mental floss with serious imagery. From the first long feedback note through the last drop of ambient seance. Beautiful in a swirly kind of way.