Phil Dirt - Reverb Central - PO Box 1609, Felton, CA 95018-1609 USA Randy Holden - Guitar God 2001
|Randy Holden was once lead guitarist with surf legends the Fender IV, fronted the Sons Of Adam, lead guitar and chief writer of psychedelic punkoidal masters the Other Half, transient lead guitarist with the inventors of loud and ugly Blue Cheer, and a solo artist in his own right. This 4 song CD of new material is monstrous. "Space Surf Rider" sports highly compressed guitar rings out with a heavy psych sound like a voodoo child on a 40 foot face... Randy's voice is just right for this elongated surf epic. The lumbering pace and heavy metal thunder describe surf conditions only a mental defective would tackle. The break cleverly includes double picked lines and huge sound. "I Sail On Love" displays chop and chunk, rhythmic thunder, and finely ground metallic rinds blended in a cool semi-reggae format beneath a tight vocal. very enjoyable. "I'll Take Your Blues Away" is a solid blues like Blue Cheer woulda done, but with a female vocal. Quite powerful. The masterpiece here is the surf instrumental "Prayer To Paradise." Trad Nazis Beware! This is many miles from trad, but Randy's surf roots are clear enough.|
Picks: Prayer To Paradise
Track by Track Review
Clocking in at a mere 22:55, this post modern surf epic borrows darkness from Randy's Other Half / Blue Cheer period, using soaring guitar laid out at a deliberate pace. Very thick and intense. Aside from fine melody lines, some of which are double picked in precise meter, there's the added treat of a surf medley part way through which includes "Hava Nagila" and the Fender IV's "Mar Gaya." In some ways, this spans the gap between the Thrusters and Jimi Hendrix and the classic surf sound. "Prayer To Paradise" demands your attention with a relentless pummeling. The dark side of surf will control you!