Phil Dirt - Reverb Central - PO Box 1609, Felton, CA 95018-1609 USA
North Of Malibu - Studiodotdotdotdot
artworkNorth Of Malibu have the recreation of the vintage thing down. These 10 studio tracks are solid and quite enjoyable. Aside from some guitar effects on a couple of tracks, this is not adventurous, just solid surf sound and a moderate pace.
Picks: Gunsmoke, Spanish Kiss, Shake-N-Stomp, Penetration, Apache, Surf Beat, Pipeline, Mr. Moto, Raw-Hide, Baja

Track by Track Review

Gunsmoke dotdotdot
Surf (Instrumental)

"Peter Gunn" meets "Smoke on the Water." It's the Dick Dale merger of the two. Very Dick Dale like in pace and mood.

Spanish Kiss dotdotdotdotdot
Surf (Instrumental)

Dick Dale's "Spanish Kiss" was a dramatic monster when it first saw the light of day on his Summer Surf LP. North Of Malibu play it electric and with less pomp, but it retains the art and science of the song. Very nice!

Shake-N-Stomp dotdotdotdot
Surf (Instrumental)

A straight treatment of Dick Dale's "Shake-N-Stomp," but with reverb and a little more flow. Powerful and reverent.

Penetration dotdotdot
Surf (Instrumental)

While less delicate than the original single, "Penetration" retains all of the intent and adds ample reverb wash. The phase-shifted psycho-acoustic guitar effects change it from vintage to surreal.

Apache dotdotdot
Surf (Instrumental)

Splashed out and more stompin' than the early versions, "Apache" is nonetheless a powerful and dramatic song. Excellent and simple arrangement. The effected guitar adds a sense of mental floss to the track.

Surf Beat dotdotdotdot
Surf (Instrumental)

Stomp on demand! That's what "Surf Beat" always conjures. It's not covered very often these days, but it is the definition of early surf. North Of Malibu amp it up and really seem to enjoy it.

Pipeline dotdotdot
Surf (Instrumental)

Who can argue with "Pipeline?" Easily one of the most recognizable and enduring of all surf instros, it lends itself to many variant styles and sounds very well. Here, it's traditionally done for the most part, and is a simple pleasure.

Mr. Moto dotdotdot
Surf (Instrumental)

Another signature song of the first wave, and written and recorded before Dick Dale so much as caused stir, "Mr. Moto" remains durable and enticing. With reverb and a bit of gentility, it takes on a different flavor. Effected guitar gives it a daydream nightmare feeling.

Raw-Hide dotdotdot
Surf (Instrumental)

A vintage surf and reverent arrangement of Link Wray's "Raw-Hide" seems to move more cautiously and with the curl in mind. Interesting way to look at the song.

Baja dotdotdotdot
Surf (Instrumental)

Another very durable surf epic is Lee Hazelwood's "Baja." With great reverence, North Of Malibu plays the song because they love it, and it shows. Great whammy dips.