Phil Dirt - Reverb Central - PO Box 1609, Felton, CA 95018-1609 USA
Solar Wind - S/Tdotdotdot
artworkSolar Wind was based on the big island in Hawaii. Now defunct, this live CD-R is the sole surviving record of their existence. The tracks here come from video camera audio shot at several 2001 surf events, including the Surf Park Luau, Niulii Cliffs, Kapaa Park, and the Wavefront Sensing and Controls Conference. Leader Rick Kendrick now lives in Foster City, California.
Picks: Baja, Walk Don't Run, Wild Weekend, Penetration, Miserlou, Surfrider, Let's Go, Holo Holo, D-Miner, Hendrix Jam, Rumble, Peter Gunn, Pipeline 2001, Scalpa Salad, Hawaii 4.9, Wipe Out, Finale

Track by Track Review


Baja dotdotdot
Surf (Instrumental)

Reverb free delicately picked guitar leads Solar Wind through an almost acoustic rendition of Lee Hazelwood's classic "Baja." Totally enjoyable, though the ambient sound masks some of the class of the performance. More or less trad, yet modern in a laid back rhythmic river of waves kinda way. The sax lines add a suave liquidity. Very nice arrangement.

Walk Don't Run dotdotdot
Surf (Instrumental)

Softly strumming through the backwater of the Ventures' classic cover. It's like a modernized throwback, with 1960 and 2001 interspersed. Gently swaying, "Walk Don't Run" flows very nicely.

Wild Weekend dotdotdot
Surf (Instrumental)

It's not often you get a restrained arrangement of this east coast pre surf rocker. Usually driven hard, "Wild Weekend" stands up sell to a more delicate delivery. The sax takes the lead, and the band settles into a mature groove.

Penetration dotdotdot
Surf (Instrumental)

Solar Wind's take on the Pyramids' "Penetration" is gentle and rhythmic. It's not necessary to power this song to get the power out of it. very nice track.

Miserlou dotdotdot
Surf (Instrumental)

A rough dry double picked guitar line opens "Miserlou." The dry guitar and moderately powered delivery take it into more roots territory. Some inventive drum work and arranging keep it from disappearing into the trail of covers. Quite interesting.

Surfrider dotdotdot
Surf (Instrumental)

In some ways, this is more like the Ventures' original, though it seems to have borrowed the fluidity of the Lively Ones, tempered by the dry guitar tone. Very pleasant.

Let's Go dotdotdot
Surf (Instrumental)

The Routers' classic studio cheerleader jam is delivered with a restrained energy and fun. "Let's Go" seems fully capable of rocking without being powered hard.

Holo Holo dotdotdot
Surf (Instrumental)

"Holo Holo" is a laid back reinvention of Thee Midnighters' ultra cruising jam "Whittier Blvd.." The complete transformation of the character of the song is courtesy the slimmed down arrangement and gentle delivery. The bridge is gone, making it a little less power dependent. Very suave.

D-Miner dotdotdot
Psychedelic Surf (Instrumental)

"D-Miner" is a squawking sax and guitar jam. It's funny how Fillmore sounding this is. It meanders and circles, yet has a curious retro appeal. Trippy.

Hendrix Jam dotdotdot
Psychedelic Blues (Instrumental)

Jimi's damped chops and electrical storm of slow groove psych blues flows through this impromptu journey. The flute adds a cool and dark aspect to this sensual adventure.

Rumble dotdotdot
Surf (Instrumental)

This is a nicely tones down arrangement of Link Wray's most recognizable intro. The power is there, and is added to by the low volume performance. The sax adds a nasty edge to an ominous song.

Peter Gunn dotdotdot
Surf (Instrumental)

Modeled on a merger of the Jimi Hendrix and Henry Mancini arrangements, "Peter Gunn" is ominous without being overbearing. It's like a mugger in the shadows, not yet perceived as a threat.

Pipeline 2001 dotdotdot
Surf (Instrumental)

A very rough glissando launched Solar Wind into a long and sub psychedelic howling interpretation of the Chantays' great "Pipeline." A most unusual treatment, with gently powered interplay and sax edge. Pretty cool!

Scalpa Salad dotdotdot
Surf (Instrumental)

"Scalpa Salad" is a "rip-off" of the Mermen's "Scalp Salad" (Rick Kendrick's words, not mine). The instrument sound is so different that it might as well be a different song. Fluid and dramatic.

Hawaii 4.9 dotdotdot
Surf (Instrumental)

The Ventures' "Hawaii Five-0" is retitled "Hawaii 4.9" because the video cameraman started the shoot part way into the song... hence an incomplete performance.

Wipe Out dotdotdot
Surf (Instrumental)

This is a pedestrian party rendition of the Surfaris' "Wipe Out." The drums are actually pretty close to the real thing, and the band and crowd were obviously having too much fun.

Finale dotdotdot
Surf (Instrumental)

This is actually the wrap up to or an outgrowth of "Wipe Out." many borrowed lines and am end of the party jam structure carry you to the hat check girl.