Phil Dirt - Reverb Central - PO Box 1609, Felton, CA 95018-1609 USA
The Surf Coasters - Waitin' 4 The Surfdotdotdotdot
artworkThe Surf Coasters are easily Japan's best, most energetic surf band. This 1995 CD contains a bunch of really good surf instros. These guys have written songs that range from very high attack surf instros a la Dick Dale to very pretty gentle surf instros with an amazing intensity,to parodies and humorous side trips. Overall, they have an edgy sound that cuts right through, and has a certain compressed punch about it, with the decay set such that you can hear it breath on some tracks, an effect that is very endearing in some circumstances, and dreadful in others. It hearkens back to the days of early sixties top forty radio processed through program levelers (precursors to compressors). It's that sound on the first Surf Raiders album (but more punchy), probably accidental there, definitely intentional here. Anyway, this is a great CD, just as good as Surfside Village, and I can't get it out of my CD player, except to load in another Surf Coasters CD. Dick Dale says: The Surf Coasters are the new life of Dick Dale (humbly uttered of course). They are true, clean and pure in their Soul, and that is what it takes to make the Dick Dale sound! Kakoii Jan, Dick Dale. Of course, looking at the band's pictures, particularly live on stage, the boys look for all the world to be more punk and disorderly than pure of heart, but then again, that's Dick for you...
Picks: Fly Up, Work Song, She Said She Said, Waste Land, Centerfold, Intruder #1, Intruder, Aruhi Nagisani

Track by Track Review

Fly Up dotdotdot
Fuzz (Instrumental)

"Fly Up" is a pretty raw instro, with quite a bit of edge, and a sorta semi-fuzzy sound. Non-surf instro. I don't think it should have been the opener.

Work Song dotdotdotdot
Surf (Instrumental)

"Work Song" is Nat Adderley's classic jazz number, reworked far more effectively then Jim Waller did in '63. Huge sound, big edge, intense delivery.

She Said She Said dotdotdotdot
Surf (Vocal)

The lone vocal track on the CD is a cover of Lennon / McCartney's "She Said She Said." It hooks me in,and I'm not even a Beatles fan. The vocals as high and so different than their instrumental prowess. Nifty.

Waste Land dotdotdotdot
Surf (Instrumental)

"Waste Land" takes the notion John Blair had with his magical dance club hit version of "El Paso" a step or two further. It is a wondrous hybrid of disco and surf... sucks you right in. It's nothing short of fun, and as unpretentious as all of their material. Simply amazing!

Centerfold dotdotdot
Noise (Instrumental)

Big noise, and I do mean noise!

Intruder #1 dotdotdot
Acoustic Surf (Instrumental)

There are two versions of "Intruder" on this CD, the song they perform behind the highly popular and successful Japanese ads for the Honda Integra. This first one is a relatively strait ahead semi-acoustic demo sounding version. Developmental and interesting to hear.

Intruder dotdotdotdotdot
Surf (Instrumental)

The second version is the hit version from the TV ads. It is an intense surf number full of double picks and raw energy. This tune is melodic, and fiery.

Aruhi Nagisani dotdotdot
Surf (Instrumental)

"Aruhi Nagisani" has a distinctive Shadows sound to it, strained through a lounge sensibility. It is the only time they venture into the British camp, and even then, it has their stamp on it.