Phil Dirt - Reverb Central - PO Box 1609, Felton, CA 95018-1609 USA
The Infernos [NY] - On Fire!dotdotdot
artworkThe Infernos sound something like Huevos Rancheros, but a little less driven. An excellent drummer with good guitar and bass work playing material that is generally weak on melody and strong on thick powerhouse intensity. There's some good stuff here, which will be more to the liking of crunch fans than trad surf fans. This is not the 80's UK band. They are from NYC.
Picks: Big Kahuna, Sandstorm, The 1/4 Mile, Showdown, The Mole, Riptide, Sunset, The Roach, Surf's Up, The Great Escape, Psychedelia, Surfabout, James Bond Theme, The Last Wave

Track by Track Review

Big Kahuna dotdotdotdot
Surf (Instrumental)

High energy power surf, fast and intense. There's no doubt that the Infernos think the "Big Kahuna" is a nasty shortboard demon surfer. More grind and power than melody, but very effective and engaging.

Sandstorm dotdotdot
Surf (Instrumental)

"Sandstorm" is a progression based number with an assaultive drive and punk undercurrent. Non melodic, but sporting firebrand double picking. This is not the Johnny and the Hurricanes tune.

The 1/4 Mile dotdotdot
Hot Rod (Instrumental)

Wham... Then grinding hot rod chord progression thunder with punk drums and distortion twang. Just not melodic enough for my tastes.

Showdown dotdotdotdot
Hot Rod (Instrumental)

Dark and lumbering, quasi-dramatic, and heavy... just a few of the words that come to mind as I listen to "Showdown." Non-melodic crunch and intrigue... yes intrigue. I'm generally not very interested in intros without a strong melody, but this does the trick through shear power, frequent shifts, and emotional content.

The Mole dotdotdot
Spy Rock (Instrumental)

Chunky with damped guitar work and a quirky techno feel. An interesting idea, like a spy theme without the spy sounds...

Riptide dotdotdot
Rock (Instrumental)

Rock chord thrash, like you might expect under a vocal, but not as an instro. The lead progression is not adequate to hold attention, but the energy does compensate. Sorta like Huevos Rancheros, but not quite as interesting. Not the Impact V or Chevells's tune.

Sunset dotdotdotdot
Big Guitar (Instrumental)

Big guitar distortion rock, whammified and intense, with a good lead line and a pleasing blend of loud and precise. You might expect subtle from a tune titled "Sunset," but this is far from subtle, though certainly in another arrangement you can imagine it invoking images of orange skies and warm sea air. Excellent.

The Roach dotdotdot
Pest Rock (Instrumental)

For the sake of discussion, let's presume the title refers to your favorite household pest. Like the multi-legged curmudgeon, this is crunchy, elusive, fast moving, menacing, and intent on dinner. Lots of chunka chunka chords and thick guitar sound. Pretty cool.

Surf's Up dotdotdot
Surf Rock (Instrumental)

Stinging whammy and a progression, with more of a thick sound than anything else. Mean and chunky, like shortboard stormriders at Mavericks.

The Great Escape dotdotdot
Rock Vacation (Instrumental)

Chunky holiday rock sporting highway frustration and hectic stoplight snarl. Tight guitar work, a little in the vein of the Neptunes.

Psychedelia dotdotdot
Sub Psychedelic (Instrumental)

Clean guitar sound and trippy little riff... it doesn't feel like "Psychedelia" based music. It seems to me to need a melody.

Surfabout dotdotdot
Sub Psychedelic (Instrumental)

Fast and furious with great drum work, "Surfabout" is more a punk grind than a surf song. A riff without a melody, but with strong wham and power from the drums. This is a showcase for drummer Harry Mack.

James Bond Theme dotdotdot
Spy Crunch (Instrumental)

This is a solid rendering of the classic spy theme. It's thick and nasty, with powerful crunch and solid drive.

The Last Wave dotdotdot
Surf (Instrumental)

Interesting solo guitar, brittle and dissonant, slightly melodic, and like a crystalline break under a fading summer sun viewed through shower door. Unusual and disturbing.