Phil Dirt - Reverb Central - PO Box 1609, Felton, CA 95018-1609 USA
The Lively Ones - Surf Riderdotdotdotdot
artworkThe Lively Ones are the quintessential surf band. From the remnants of the Expressos and the Surfmen, they rose to personify the LA surf band. Jim Masoner's guitar playing launched hundreds of others down the guitar road, both through his direct teaching and encouragement as well as his awesome talent, including Jim Sawyer of the Syndicate Of Sound. Hardly a bad track in the lot. Some mono. The UK ACE double CD and Japanese Teichiku double CD are higher quality sound and CD mastering, and better priced too, if you can find them.
Picks: Surf Beat, Let's Go Trippin', Misirlou, (Dance With The) Guitar Man, Caterpillar Crawl, Walkin' The Board, Paradise Cove, Goofy Foot, Surf Rider, Happy Gremmie, Hotdoggen, Surfers Lament

Track by Track Review


Surf Beat dotdotdot
Surf (Instrumental)

A less gutty sound than the Dick Dale original, but a cool track anyway.

Let's Go Trippin' dotdotdot
Surf (Instrumental)

A pretty standard cover of Dick Dale's first instro hit.

Misirlou dotdotdotdot
Spy Surf (Instrumental)

No match for the Dick Dale version, but a damn fine rendition anyway. This has something magnetic about it, even though it is in some ways light weight.

(Dance With The) Guitar Man dotdot
Surf (Instrumental)

A pedestrian cover of the Duane Eddy ego salve single, just with more reverb, without Steve Douglas' flair on sax, and sans the chorus, thank you very much.

Caterpillar Crawl dotdotdotdot
Surf (Instrumental)

The Strangers had recorded this before there was surf. Their version is quite dry, and much less glorious than this stellar performance. Remarkably pure and ominous.

Walkin' The Board dotdotdotdot
Surf (Instrumental)

Happy pumpin' tune with a raspy sax in the back. Rollin' tune that carries you right along.

Paradise Cove dotdotdotdot
Surf (Instrumental)

Before the Lively Ones, there were the Surfmen. One of their singles was "Paradise Cove." When their lineup evolved and they looked for a new label and a new deal (Del-Fi), they ran into legal issues of ownership of the band name. So, they became the Lively Ones. This version is a bit more polished and prettier than the original, and has remained one of my favorite slow island surf classics.

Goofy Foot dotdotdotdotdot
Surf (Instrumental)

A high power track is an essential part of any vintage surf collection. This is just about the best Lively Ones track ever! Fast, powerful, high energy, ripping good guitar work, ample changes. Stunning! It's been covered, but never matched.

Surf Rider dotdotdotdotdot
Surf (Instrumental)

This is what happens when a real surfband covers a Nokie Edwards (Ventures) tune that had no relation to surf as written. In fact, it started life as a Potato concept song called "Spudnik." This is the grand and beautiful song that runs under the ending credits of Pulp Fiction. This is the full length version, not the single edit.

Happy Gremmie dotdotdotdot
Surf (Instrumental)

Fiberglas dum-ta-dum-de-dum. A humorous sounding track, not unlike the sorta thing the Halibuts would cover. Nice.

Hotdoggen dotdotdotdot
Surf (Instrumental)

One of the happiest of surf tracks. An infectious tune that's just plain delightful. Great sound and fun!

Surfers Lament dotdotdotdot
Surf (Instrumental)

A "Paradise Cove" inspired track with a sadness and beauty all it's own.