Phil Dirt - Reverb Central - PO Box 1609, Felton, CA 95018-1609 USA
The Metalunas - X-Minus-Onedotdotdotdot
artworkMark Brodie's wonderful new concept album has finally arrived. It features his classic crunchy surf guitar sound, some well placed organ, and his wonderful writing. Mark has redefined small combo surf. Mark Cinnamon - bass and Rod Moore - drums support Mark's guitar work and occasional organ fills. If you liked Mark Brodie & the Beaver Patrol's incredible "Shores Of Hell" CD, you'll like this as well. An excellent adventure in surf 'n' space.
Picks: X-Minus One, Blast-Off, Satellite Of Mystery, Enemy Approaching, Shields Up!, Moon Relay, It Came From The Nebula, Meteorite Mambo, Celluloid Planetoid, Jupiter Doo Dah, Twilight City, Ballistic Bikini

Track by Track Review


X-Minus One dotdotdotdotdot
Surf (Instrumental)

A sample from an NBC television black and white sci-fi special that counts down a launch, then describes the tales to be woven in "X-Minus One." The track is pure unadulterated Mark Brodie, melodic, fluid, and gorgeously played. Mark's sense of melody is both pure surf and uniquely his. Hid trademark dribbled double picking is spectacular, and as always, his sense of structure is perfect. Highly infectious.

Blast-Off dotdotdotdot
Surf (Instrumental)

A fine progression based highly energetic and punchy track, featuring a fairly dry second guitar, and surf-beat hand claps over a fine beat. The riff is infectious enough, but when Mark breaks into the midsection glissando, it becomes magical. The gliss is best described borrowing a phrase from Don van Vliet, a "long leanin'" flow. Damn fine track.

Satellite Of Mystery dotdotdot
Surf (Instrumental)

The organ takes the lead, whistlin' its little whirly heart out. The melody is moody and sad, and the tempo is moderate.. The track is both listenable and very enjoyable, despite lacking much guitar. Mark Brodie's writing seems quite adaptable to various styles.

Enemy Approaching dotdotdotdot
Surf (Instrumental)

What an amazing introduction this track has. It slowly building to introduce the organ-guitar duet, but has such a strong character, it should be a song in its own right. Solid and brilliantly arranged. Menacing and foretelling of destruction to come. Yet, it is also somewhat playful at times. Cool concept.

Shields Up! dotdotdotdot
Surf (Instrumental)

This track uses a rolling drum cadence in the first verse, then drops into a fine beat as the guitar also changes from crunchy low-E line to a higher, more melodic melody line. It fades out all too fast.

Moon Relay dotdotdotdotdot
Surf (Instrumental)

This is a splendid cover of the Vistas' "Moon Relay." It's a perfect rendering, though a tiny bit faster, and a lot crunchier. The original is such a fine obscuro, and Mark Has both captured everything there, but has also stamped it with his superb surf sound. Crisp and infectious.

It Came From The Nebula dotdotdotdot
Surf (Instrumental)

There just isn't a more evil deep throated growl than that which graces the opening of this track. Pure evil, like Satan's own voice providing the chills. The tune is fast, typically Mark Brodie infectious, and quite spirited. The organ whirls and swells under Mark's deluxe double picked lines. Powerful and immediate. The sound of Mark's high note lines is nearly a religious experience.

Meteorite Mambo dotdotdotdot
Surf (Instrumental)

string swipes and outboard reverb spring noise introduce this infectious track. The tune is based on a fine and infectious riff over a rumbling two-not bass line that provides real bite. The long slow glissandoes are pure ecstasy. What a fine track. Brodie's ability to create a simple riff, and then milk it for all it's worth is unsurpassed. He demonstrates the real power of the guitar when an infectious line is squeezed out of it.

Celluloid Planetoid dotdotdotdot
Surf (Instrumental)

Magnificent surf, accented with warm whammy. The double picked lines are dribbling perfect. Infectious and too fun.

Jupiter Doo Dah dotdotdotdotdot
Surf (Instrumental)

Zippy comes to mind. This great track uses flying Spanish double picked tones and energetic playing to convey an irresistible melody line. Instantly personal and magnetic. It's funny, but this is just one of the best tracks in quite a while, yet there are few descriptors that come to mind other than bitchin' and must have.

Twilight City dotdotdotdot
Surf (Instrumental)

A fine track, with the organ trading whistling warbling lines with the incredibly good double picked lead guitar. This is a spectacular and happy track.

Ballistic Bikini dotdotdotdot
Surf (Instrumental)

Mean double picked low-E lead, whistlin' organ beneath, and a very simple riff that proves the power of the note when employed carefully, like Dick Dale's "The Victor." Fine tune.