Phil Dirt - Reverb Central - PO Box 1609, Felton, CA 95018-1609 USA
El Patapsco - LRDGdotdotdotdot
artworkEl Patapsco play instrumental music influenced by surf, western, rockabilly, and sixties garage. These 12 songs were recorded by Tanuj Kundi in Elkridge, MD in 2005.
Picks: A Shot in the Dark, Bulletproof Bully, Caravan, Check the Record, Gerry from Pikesville, Jolly Rancher, Long Range Desert Group, Open Letter To The Guy Who Left His Battery In My Sideyard, The Rattler, The Revenge of Woolly Doug, Western Grip, Yamanote Line

Track by Track Review


A Shot in the Dark dotdotdot
Surf (Instrumental)

Henry Mancini's often covered "A Shot in the Dark" is done with trembling guitar chords in the bridges, and a cross between lounge sheik and Velveeta cheese. Pretty fun track.

Bulletproof Bully dotdotdotdot
Surf (Instrumental)

Kinda spy, kinda back alley, a touch of surf, with a moody danger lurking in most corners. "Bulletproof Bully" shimmers and shakes, and haunts while enticing. The darkness is pretty attractive.

Caravan dotdotdotdot
Surf (Instrumental)

This is one of the more unusual arrangements of Juan Tizol and Duke Ellington's sultry masterpiece. Aside from what seems like a false chord at the start, "Caravan" is a wonderful track. Throb and shimmer, tribal drums, cheesy organ... all-in-all, it's well developed and arranged, and bears repeated listening.

Check the Record dotdotdotdot
Surf (Instrumental)

If "The Model" was written in dangerous territory, it might have sounded more like this. The guitar and organ play the same lines often, creating an uneasy sense. There's a touch of seventies funk guitar, but mostly "Check the Record" is an ominous wash of moody danger.

Gerry from Pikesville dotdotdot
Surf (Instrumental)

"Gerry from Pikesville" is dark textured and doesn't wander far from home. The relentless pattern creates a sense of tension.

Jolly Rancher dotdotdot
Surf (Instrumental)

A touch of goofiness brings on a grin as "Jolly Rancher" evolves. It's really quite endearing, with a bold richness and forward motion feeling. Fun, unpretentious, but not minimalist.

Long Range Desert Group dotdotdotdot
Surf (Instrumental)

Riders gallop across an open range where cactus grows and strangers lurk. "Long Range Desert Group" is a wonderful song with a spaghetti edge and a sultry lounge influence. This would be quite good on a coastal a drive with the top down. Spiffy!

Open Letter To The Guy Who Left His Battery In My Sideyard dotdotdot
Surf (Instrumental)

The title tells you this isn't going to be a surf epic. "Open Letter To The Guy Who Left His Battery In My Sideyard" is arty in a quirky and peculiar sorta way, more engaging than the title suggests, but close to the image it invokes.

The Rattler dotdotdotdot
Surf (Instrumental)

Ringing chords and haunted keys, surfy second guitar, and a moody bass with well developed drums add up to a surfish spaghetti western inclined track with a great sound. This grew on me significantly as I listed to review, which is always a good sign. Nice track.

The Revenge of Woolly Doug dotdotdot
Surf (Instrumental)

"The Revenge of Woolly Doug" is on the grinning side, maybe a little goofy in that "Pink Panther" way. Like a Henry Mancini track structurally, and somewhat catchy.

Western Grip dotdotdot
Surf (Instrumental)

This is a slightly thick track with layered sound on the busy side. The organ is the key instrument (pun intended), which gives it an urban feeling. "Western Grip" doesn't seem very western to me, either in the cowboy sense, or the coastal sense.

Yamanote Line dotdotdot
Surf (Instrumental)

With a nod to Lou Reed, this is a melancholy song with a fatalistic underbelly, yet a sense of unfounded optimism. Interesting and coastal in its imagery. Dissonant and yet fluid.