Phil Dirt - Reverb Central - PO Box 1609, Felton, CA 95018-1609 USA The Greaseballs - Tombstone Wax
|This second release from the Greaseballs is simply wonderful. Great writing and playing, classic surf beat, rich tone, stark imagery, and excellent arranging add up to a thoroughly satisfying surf experience.|
Picks: Psycho Surf A Go-Go, Stud Monkey Bravado, Least Favorite Martian, Dark Side Of Flicka, Stiletto, Two Heavies And A Cruncher, Lulu's Discovery, Gluefoot, Watery Grave, Link Thins, Chrome Shop Kid, High Plains Hodad, Medieval Cowboy, Froggie Waxes Down, Rikers Island (Welcome), Cyclops Surfer, Socorro
Track by Track Review
"Psycho Surf A Go-Go" is a very fluid song with a bouncy beat and really nice riff. The second guitar's muted reverb is almost subliminal. The percussion punch gives it a solid beat. Way cool.
Spaghetti Rock (Instrumental)
More than a riff rocker, but not much more complex, "Stud Monkey Bravado" has a very rock combo sound, except for the superbly whammied spaghetti break. Love the stinging whammy!
With a nod to Bobby Fuller in title and bass line, this superb track is liquid enticing and perfect for open road running. The sense of traveling is stark, and the tone very warm. While Bobby Fuller is written all over it, it's also quite original. Exceptional!
Cowboy Surf (Instrumental)
Boy oh boy! "Dark Side Of Flicka" is a super-fun playful number with a totally infectious rhythm and cowboy beat. Great drums, excellent melody, and fine arranging make this a must-hear track. Entirely engaging.
Texas Rock (Instrumental)
darkly textured stereo guitars deliver an Austin-like melody riff while great drums and thumping bass carry the day. "Stiletto" grows on you as it runs by. This track is edgy, engaging, and sports effective drums.
Two Heavies And A Cruncher
Mysterious and circular, "Two Heavies And A Cruncher" has a bit of the Orient and a great rhythm. Superb drums, very cool surf guitar, rock solid bass thunder, and perfectly placed dry rhythm guitar combine for a very strong track. The sense of motion is very strong here.
Tribal drums and moody bass, along with very tasteful rhythm guitar, provide a solid foundation for a fine melody line played with lovely tone. "Lulu's Discovery" slowly works its way into your head. Very satisfying.
"Gluefoot" is a grand surf instro with rich reverb. The splendid melody line is a little ominous, yet as only surf instros seem to be able to do, it also offers up optimism. This very cool track is perfect for a journey down the coast on a foggy morning.
Richly sullen, "Watery Grave" moves at a deliberate and mournful pace. The moody bass gives it great power, while the tribal drums and crisp rhythm counterpoint the dark and shimmering lead guitar. Images of cactus pains and funeral processions are invoked with great clarity.
Surf Link (Instrumental)
Well, perhaps the nods to Link Wray are obvious, but then again anything written in his name surely needs to reference his style and edge. "Link Thins" is mean and nasty, without being solely about anger. Ominous, yet somehow quite fluid and endearing.
Big bouncy surfabilly fun with great drums and classic country boogie guitars. "Chrome Shop Kid" is a thoroughly fun track.
Spaghetti Surf (Instrumental)
Superb muted reverb rhythm and ringing chords, and wonderful drums and bass. Drama, power, and a classic surf beat. "High Plains Hodad" uses surf and spaghetti western ideas and surf foundations to create the sort of magic that Jon and the Nightriders' epics created. Very strong!
Medieval Surf (Instrumental)
More cowboy than medieval, "Medieval Cowboy" bounces and grins through a slightly moody romp at mid tempo. This immediately intrigues you, then quickly brings a satisfied grin, followed by repeated enjoyment.
A sort of French feel edges in slightly via melody, but there the French connection dissolves. Great dribbling double picked lead lines and classic surf sound. Rich and very cool!
Surf Rock (Instrumental)
Hard edged and moderately paced, this surf backtracked rock guitar number is a fine example of the power of the classic rhythm. Perfect surf beat drums, and well developed simple bass and rhythm support nasty lead guitar.
Mid tempo, moody, cautious, and featuring a classic surf beat, "Cyclops Surfer" is aptly titled. You can see the ogre on his log, unaware that he is being observed. The surf drums and rhythm call to the brine, while the bass provides a dangerous edge. The lead lines are a bit playful, like an outwardly dangerous rider showing his inner marshmallow self through his graceful carving of a glassy wall. Way cool!
"Socorro" has an air of western skies. The melody is very good, and the listening experience very pleasant.