Phil Dirt - Reverb Central - PO Box 1609, Felton, CA 95018-1609 USA
The Mar-Kets - Surfer's Stompdotdot
artworkWhile there are some really nicely recorded and very listenable tracks on this album, it is nonetheless not surf at all, other than in the loosest interpretation. It is, however, really early in the surf release cycle, dating from April 1962, and perhaps recorded as early as 1961. History yes, surf no.
Picks: Balboa Blue, Stompede, The Bristol Stomp, Stompin' At The Savoy, Surfin', Here Comes The Ho-Dads

Track by Track Review

Surfer's Stomp dotdot
Big Band Surf (Instrumental)

"Surfer's Stomp" is simple slow paced innocent instrumental rock and roll, with great piano and saucy sax. Infectious and unpretentious. Don't look for the classic surf sound here, but do enjoy the simplicity and fun. Smooth and right nice.

Balboa Blue dotdotdot
Big Band Surf (Instrumental)

"Balboa Blue" is stylistically like "Surfer's Stomp," but for my money, it's much nicer. The easy stomp beat and saucy sax are quite complimentary. A bit moody, and romantic, but with a beat.

Survival Stomp dotdot
Big Band Surf (Instrumental)

Light weight, but featuring some tasty guitar tone and piano, "Survival Stomp" is based very loosely on "Quarter To Three." It's easy to listen to, but quite a ways from the real deal.

Let's Go Trippin' dotdot
Big Band Surf (Instrumental)

Really thin guitar plays Dick Dale and his Del-tones' "Let's Go Trippin'" against piano and a studio band. I can't say that there's a thinner and less satisfying version out there.

Stompede dotdotdot
Big Band Surf (Instrumental)

Cheerleader big-bandage and slush. "Stompede" is very nicely recorded, and the band is right on the money, and the track is one of the better ones from the Joe Saraceno early sessions.

The Bristol Stomp dotdotdot
Big Band Surf (Instrumental)

This was a cheesy song to begin with, but somehow, The Marketts do bring some life to it. The quality of the recording makes up for the low brow cheese.

Stompin' At The Savoy dotdotdot
Big Band Surf (Instrumental)

Benny Goodman's "Stompin' At The Savoy" is an interesting choice, probably resulting from its title alone. This track, more than all the others here, cements the link between the arranging and the stomp ethic. Pretty fun.

Surfin' dotdotdot
Big Band Surf (Instrumental)

This is a cover of The Beach Boys' "Surfin'" with sax lead. Surprisingly, I like this - can't really say why. It's a grinner for sure, despite being pretty cheesy.

Stomp, Look And Listen dotdot
Big Band Surf (Instrumental)

"Stomp, Look And Listen" is another big band stomp kinda thing. Its tremolo guitar and piano are very cool, but the sax and beat are tiring.

If You Gotta Make A Fool Of Somebody dot
Big Band Surf (Instrumental)

What a strange choice. "If You Gotta Make A Fool Of Somebody" was a chart hit, and this arrangement seems better fitted for a brass band from 1880 than a surf record.

Here Comes The Ho-Dads dotdotdot
Big Band Surf (Instrumental)

Really standard R&B elements come together with the big stomp to make "Here Comes The Ho-Dads" pretty fun. Surprisingly, I enjoy this track, though I never think to pull it out for a listen.

Stompin' Room Only dotdot
Big Band Surf (Instrumental)

More big band sounds for the beach, this time more slushy and less stompy. Quite ho-hum.