Phil Dirt - Reverb Central - PO Box 1609, Felton, CA 95018-1609 USA
The Surfaris - Surfin' Along With The Surfarisdotdotdotdot
artworkThis Japanese collection of Surfaris' material presents a fine cross section of better known tracks.
Picks: Wipe Out, Murphy The Surfie, Moon Dawg, Waikiki Run, Big Surge, Point Panic, Miserlou, Batman, Dune Buggy, Apache

Track by Track Review

Wipe Out dotdotdotdot
Surf (Instrumental)

The Decca / Bud Dant rerecording of "Wipe Out," rerecorded due to the legal wrangling between Dot Records / Richard Delvy and the Surfaris. It has none of the character of the original, being softer and more controlled. Still, it's a fascinating glimpse into the world of surf recording.

Murphy The Surfie dotdotdotdot
Surf (Instrumental)

A cover of the Joy Boys' (Australian surf band) instro that Ron Wilson fell in love with when they toured there in the sixties. It's up beat, happy, and really fun. It rolls along like a military march in high gear. Infectious high spirited fun.

Moon Dawg dotdotdotdot
Surf (Instrumental)

A fine cover of the Gamblers' 1960 hit single. This is the first time it was committed to disc all reverbed out. It growls and has a more menacing tone. Great track.

Waikiki Run dotdotdotdotdot
Surf (Instrumental)

The boy's first hit with "Wipe Out" and "Surfer Joe." Their follow up single was "Point Panic" c/w "Waikiki Run," the B-side of which is this track. It's a great tom tom surf rave. The manic island drums are splendid, and the brilliant blend of musical elements shows off the prowess of this mighty band.

Big Surge dotdotdotdot
Surf (Instrumental)

A mighty simple big chord dramatic surf number. It's dynamics and power chord whammy create a truly storm-surf grinder. Very cool.

Point Panic dotdotdotdotdot
Surf (Instrumental)

A-side of the follow up single to "Wipe Out." Great intro scream and tom toms. The fire in the bones of the band is clear here. High spirited, chunky, and rhythmic. Grand power glissandoes, and those wonderful Ron Wilson drums. Jim Pash's sax is most appropriate. Not often covered, but a really good tune.

Miserlou dotdotdotdot
Surf (Instrumental)

Like "Surfing Drums," this is a more choppy cover of the standard surf monster. Solid, less dynamic guitar sound, but ample punch in the performance. A fine rendition.

Batman dotdotdotdot
Surf (Instrumental)

This is not the Neil Hefty TV theme. It's the track that Lee Hazelwood penned for the first Astronauts album. A lot like "Movin'," it has that melodic damped string sound you'd expect from that writer. Great track.

Dune Buggy dotdotdotdotdot
Surf (Instrumental)

This track is one of the coolest and most unique vintage surf tracks ever recorded. It's marvelous blend of rhythm and melody is utterly infectious. I can still recall the thrill of hearing it for the first time. The rhythmic chunk, the tribal riffs, the melody that seems to only slightly drift off of a single note, the angry sax, all contribute to a masterpiece of instrumental music. Brilliant!

Apache dotdotdot
Surf (Instrumental)

A pedestrian version of the Jerry Lordan classic, with too much echoplex on the guitar, distracting from the tune. yet, given the plethora of Shadows clone versions out there, this original arrangement, particularly the rhythm guitar, is a refreshing change.