Phil Dirt - Reverb Central - PO Box 1609, Felton, CA 95018-1609 USA
Surfin' Elvis - The Pelvisdotdotdotdot
artworkThis 1997 CD has alluded me for a while, but I'm all better now that I've tracked it down. Surfin' Elvis is a collaborative side project of Surf Coasters guitarist Shigeo Naka. Mostly blues based, this imaginative disc takes classic Elvis Presley hits and morphs them into infectious instrumentals. Often powerful, sometimes haunting, and always entertaining, "The Pelvis" is a rare and precious gem. Very hard to come by, but well worth the search.
Picks: Bossa Nova Baby, Jailhouse Rock, I Want You, I Need You, I Love You, Heartbreak Hotel, Little Sister, Don't Be Cruel, Love Me, Stuck On You, One Night, Love Me Tender ~ Caravan ~ Love Me Tender, C. C. Rider, Can't Help Falling In Love

Track by Track Review

Bossa Nova Baby dotdotdotdot
Surf Blues (Instrumental)

Right from the power glissando opener, you know this is going to rock! Driven by the Surf Coasters beat, "Bossa Nova Baby" smashes the barriers with infectious rhythm and power. The harmonica carries the melody, but no mind. This is a rock-solid track.

Jailhouse Rock dotdotdot
Rock Surf (Instrumental)

Raucous harmonica and rockin' drums, slithery bass and killer solo guitar. A line from "Pipeline" magically appears from the harp, keeping faith with Shigeo Naka's surf side.

I Want You, I Need You, I Love You dotdotdotdot
Surf (Instrumental)

With a Hawaiian-esq feel, "I Want You, I Need You, I Love You" floats across the lagoon as the luau fire flickers in the distance. Warm tropical breezes rustle skirts and carry the sent of orchids. The guitar carries the melody for most of the track. Excellent.

Heartbreak Hotel dotdotdot
Rock (Instrumental)

Harmonica blues, tinkling piano, and soulful groove blend into a slurry of Elvis Presley gold.

Little Sister dotdotdotdot
Rock (Instrumental)

A piano glissando opens this bouncing harmonica monster. Rock solid, infectious, and amazingly cool. Great piano throughout, and a big guitar solo in the middle.

Don't Be Cruel dotdotdot
Rock (Instrumental)

Bongos and piano, harmonica and cheese. Like a tweaky TV theme, "Don't Be Cruel" blends an Opey harmonica and twirpy rhythm for that family hour feel.

Love Me dotdotdotdot
Surf (Instrumental)

Shimmering vibrato guitar, spiffy surf reverb, and Elvis Presley's silky melody. Sad and romantic, light and liquid, with a bluesy harmonica break.

Stuck On You dotdotdot
Blues (Instrumental)

A rockin' surf blues treatment of "Stuck On You" is lead by harmonica. Coll in that innocent rockin' fifties kinda way.

One Night dotdotdot
Blues (Instrumental)

A slow blues oozes out of every corner of this classic tune. Smooth and slithery, in a sweaty blues bar groove. Very cool.

Love Me Tender ~ Caravan ~ Love Me Tender dotdotdotdotdot
Surf (Instrumental)

This is brilliant. "Love Me Tender" opens deceptively slow and silky on harmonica. Then, without warning, it drifts into a psychedelic middle eastern vision of tribal howling feedback before erupting into a surf-n-slam arrangement of "Caravan" with pounding tom toms and rich surf guitar. As the reverb is kicked for what you're just sure is the final crescendo, it's back to a verse of playful "Love Me Tender" at 75 miles per hour. Deluxe!

C. C. Rider dotdotdot
Blues (Instrumental)

This is a fairly strait blues treatment of "C. C. Rider" with harmonica taking the lead. Spiffy and entertaining, and played fast and infectiously.

Can't Help Falling In Love dotdotdot
Surf (Instrumental)

Slow and silky surf guitar gently pours this Elvis Presley classic from a tribal gourd. Very pretty, with a harmonica break.