Phil Dirt - Reverb Central - PO Box 1609, Felton, CA 95018-1609 USA
The Professors - Destination: Moondotdotdotdot
artworkThis is a very cool release. Dark sax squonk, moody bass, well thought out original drums, and simple but very affective guitar lines. many of these songs sneak up on you, while others are immediate grabbers. Destination: Moon surf in the same peripheral sense that GT Stringer is, and if you like that band, surely you'll enjoy The Professors. There are many similarities, but that does not mean they emulate the Australian wizards at all. I am not yet as enamored with this as I am with GT Stringer, but I suspect that is just a matter of time. "Undertow" is particularly spectacular, and "Backspray" is gorgeously minimal like middle period Pink Floyd.
Picks: Aim Low, Waterlogged, Freeride, Jetset Lounge, Electomatic, Destination: Moon, Moons Over My Hammy, Mr. Incredible, Backspray, Tigershark, Undertow

Track by Track Review

Aim Low dotdotdotdot
Exotic Surf Lounge (Instrumental)

Richly textured guitar plays a slightly mysterious melody against a bumping bass line and nearly conventional surf beat. The muted rhythm in the transitions, the surfish break melody, and the slow island whammy make this an interesting beach party kind of number. "Aim Low" is nicely done, well produced, and it grows on you.

Waterlogged dotdotdot
Exotic Surf Lounge (Instrumental)

Slow grode baritone sax and a soft easy melody on guitar slippery guitar create a gentle sunset image. "Waterlogged" is a pleasant track with an easy to enjoy sound.

Freeride dotdotdotdot
Exotic Surf Lounge (Instrumental)

Delicate and soft, a touch spooky, and moody in a late night sad kinda way. "Freeride" reminds me just a bit of GT Stringer. It starts off in a way that doesn't reach out to you, but soon enough you find that you're grooving very easily to its soulful sound.

Jetset Lounge dotdotdot
Exotic Surf Lounge (Instrumental)

"Jetset Lounge" is a light weight number with a jazzy island lounge sound. Imagine Johnny Smith attempting surf. Now there's an inversion! Anyway, it's a pleasant track.

Electomatic dotdotdotdot
Exotic Surf Lounge (Instrumental)

Rompin' and jammin', this near-stomp item has more interesting drums that melody at the start, and a more cohesive combo feel by the second verse. The drums and bass and guitar and sax are wholly dependent on each other. Great easy to groove with energy.

Destination: Moon dotdotdotdot
Exotic Surf Lounge (Instrumental)

Dribble spooky guitar dangerously introduces "Destination: Moon." The song os a squonky GT Stringer-like number that has the soulful hook into your inner self that the comparison implies. The drums evolve into a superb and original beat that really makes this work. What starts out gently, becomes more spooky and energetic, and ends up being really cool and fun.

Moons Over My Hammy dot
Exotic Surf Lounge (Instrumental)

"Moons Over My Hammy" seems to me to be a tame R&B jam in the fifties mold, or maybe pre-go-go Northwest frat. Fun, but it didn't bring me back.

Mr. Incredible dotdotdotdot
Exotic Surf Lounge (Instrumental)

Dribbled muted reverb patterns and great drums with rumbling bass circle like bees around a hive, briefly yielding to transitional melody lines. This is all about the rhythm and beat. The breaks are more melodic, but not at all more affective. The rhythm and structure of "Mr. Incredible" are superb and original. The bongos add a sweaty tropical sensation. Very cool!

Backspray dotdotdotdot
Exotic Surf Lounge (Instrumental)

Delicate percussion and rising guitar bring on stereo echo delayed guitar cycling through a perfectly revolving melody line. The drums are great, the bass immediate and spot on, and the sax augmentations squirt conscious. An interesting blend of stylings make "Backspray" quite compelling.

Tigershark dotdotdot
Exotic Surf Lounge (Instrumental)

More "Bat Man"-like than "Tigershark" invoking, this song is a blend of writhing chords and cycling riffs. For me, it didn't quite break into the engaging realm.

Undertow dotdotdotdot
Exotic Surf Lounge (Instrumental)

Dark digeridu like keyboard warbles gradually yield to a gentle cycling riff and slow beat. Soulful and plodding, eventually building to some shimmering drama. Fort the first full minute, "Undertow" didn't capture me at all, but as with well crafted slowly evolving themes, that changed slowly as it snuck up on me. Eventually, it unfolds into heavy metal sludge. The evolutionary nature of the song and its rhythm structure, along with the squonky sax, reminds me a lot of Nik Turner's Space Ritual.