Phil Dirt - Reverb Central - PO Box 1609, Felton, CA 95018-1609 USA
The Irradiates - First Radiationsdotdotdotdot
artworkThis is a superb first release from The Irradiates, who include among their players an ex-Hawaii Samurai guitarist and drummer. Very thick, high energy surf. This album is all covers, but I have to say that the band really do a stellar job! Enhancing the eight instros are two vocals, Agent Orange's "Everything Turns Gray," and Man or Astro-MAN?'s "9 Volt."
Picks: Atom Boogie, The Unknown Rad, Crash, Margaya, The Victor, Gotcha, Surf Party, Mach One

Track by Track Review


Atom Boogie dotdotdotdotdot
Surf (Instrumental)

B-movie sci-fi hypnosis opens "Atom Boogie," which is a rousing cover of Nicolai Rimsky-Korsakov's "Flight Of The Bumble Bee" based on a a reverby interpretation of The Ventures among others. The midsection is a ripping surf jam with relentless drums, intense guitar, pulsing muted reverb rhythm and bass, and a lot of energy. In some ways, this is psychedelic, but mostly it's a whirl of stunning surf. Superb!

The Unknown Rad dotdotdotdot
Surf (Instrumental)

Great energy and intensity run roughshod over any sense of calm you may have anticipated. "The Unknown Rad" is a cover of Don Bradley's "Unknown" originally recorded by The Vy-Dels. Almost as intense as Splashback's rendering, this is simply powerful. Great!

Crash dotdotdotdotdot
Surf (Instrumental)

The Irradiates power through a high energy cover of The Creations' "Crash." A number of bands have covered it before, but I dare say few stand up to this take. Excellent!

Margaya dotdotdotdot
Surf (Instrumental)

This is big and trashy, with bold energy and edge. The Fender IV's "Mar Gaya" is played very loudly and powerfully, with relentless intensity and a nervous sound. Look out!

The Victor dotdotdotdot
Surf (Instrumental)

Dick Dale and his Del-tones' "The Victor" is amped up and splashed out. The lead guitar is subdued, much as Dick Dale's original is. Great drums and pulsing reverb rhythm in the middle, making this part unbelievably hot.

Gotcha dotdotdotdot
Surf (Instrumental)

This is a somewhat ominous cover of The Tradewinds' obscure "Gotcha." Pulsing as the cycling riff requires, the song includes intentionally frantic entropy. Very original arrangement.

Surf Party dotdotdotdot
Surf (Instrumental)

The rhythm guitar is dark and heavy, and the lead loud and intense, generating an in-your-face darkness that the The Astronauts' original version of Bobby Beverly and William Dunham's masterpiece didn't possess. Tuff and relentless.

Mach One dotdotdotdot
Surf (Instrumental)

This is a tuff romping cover of The Chancellors' "Mach I." The double pick lead is very fast and furious. Big, dramatic, and organ augmented. Very cool!