Phil Dirt - Reverb Central - PO Box 1609, Felton, CA 95018-1609 USA
The Supertones - Ride The Wild Twangdotdotdot
artworkThe Supertones are a New York City surf band. A few originals punctuate a roster of fifteen tracks of whammy 'n reverb. The tracks were recorded "live" in studio. The drums are too dominant and the guitars not crisp enough. I'm usually less interested in volumes of covers due to the plethora (not a town in Ohio) of such things now available, but this CD is a cool cappuccino blast of twangage (did I say that?).
Picks: K-39, The Cruel Sea, Torque Wrench, Mr. Moto, Sand Pumper, Out Of Limits, Wingnut, Pipeline, Supertone Stomp, Bulldog, 1,000 Foot Road, Walk, Don't Run '94, Rawhide, Telstar '95, Penetration

Track by Track Review

K-39 dotdotdot
Surf (Instrumental)

The Challengers' excellent single revamped slightly with crunchy drums and solid playing. Less energy than the original, but nicely phrased and quite enjoyable.

The Cruel Sea dotdotdot
Surf (Instrumental)

This is one of the very few British surf instros that became a standard part of surf sets. Mike Maxfield's' tune is played like they mean it, with a really nice break. The low down lead is subtle and round.

Torque Wrench dotdotdot
Ventures Surf (Instrumental)

Bits of "Competition Coupe" and a Ventures-ish dryer sound. Great drums, and a solid effort in a nineties surf vein.

Mr. Moto dotdotdot
Surf (Instrumental)

The Belairs' classic played well, with more drum energy than guitar spiff. It's solid, but not remarkable.

Sand Pumper dotdotdot
Surf (Instrumental)

Tasty rhythms and a friendly riff together in a solid surf instro. The riff is varied by climbing ever higher up the neck and onto the low-E. Great drums, fast and very fun.

Out Of Limits dotdotdot
Surf (Instrumental)

Straight recording of the Marketts' smash. Nicely covered.

Wingnut dotdotdot
Surf (Instrumental)

Excellent super high damped picking accents this solid rendering. Intense and thick, and a little murky. A spy guitar riff and murky sound.

Pipeline dotdot
Surf (Instrumental)

Standard surf fare, without any groundbreaking or original variations. Over covered songs should be reinvented to avoid ho-hum sameness.

Supertone Stomp dotdotdot
Surf (Instrumental)

Pumped drums a la "Squad Car," and a softer melody line and delivery. The main riff is friendly and warm. Quite enjoyable.

Bulldog dotdotdot
Surf (Instrumental)

The Fireballs surfed up and slightly energized. Sorta like the Ventures cover it I think. Nothing special.

1,000 Foot Road dotdotdot
Surf (Instrumental)

A hot rod peels out down a less than quarter mile strip of asphalt, the the band launches into a rhythmic number that relies on a cool riff and really nice guitar picking.

Walk, Don't Run '94 dotdotdot
Surf (Instrumental)

The Ventures redid their own hit to accommodate surf. The Supertones took a lot of the surf back out of it, making this much more like the original than "Walk, Don't Run '64."

Rawhide dotdotdot
Surf (Instrumental)

Link Wray's classic opens with "how 'bout I kick your fat ass... "Rawhide!" The piano is a nice touch, giving this surf grunge treatment a vintage sound despite the fuzz bass. Nice track.

Telstar '95 dotdotdot
Surf (Instrumental)

Single picked guitar lead, tasty tones, and a much prettier rendering than the Tornados' original, or most other covers. Different enough to break the over covered limitation.

Penetration dotdotdot
Surf (Instrumental)

The Pyramids' hit, well played in an eighties LA surf band light, with lots of energy but not much freshness. The arrangement is essentially the Ventures', though it's much warmer and sports tasty whammy.