Phil Dirt - Reverb Central - PO Box 1609, Felton, CA 95018-1609 USA Undertoe - Real Men Don't Sing
|Real Men Don't Sing is significantly more surfy than Friends Don't Let Friends Sing. The music is less intellectual and more emotional. There are some really good things here, but as before, Undertoe stays on the periphery of the surf genre, borrowing from many styles and creating their own unique vision of the watery world. |
Picks: Earthworm, 30 Fathoms, Terribly True, Skiff, Belly Tart, Pipewrench, The Sheikh, Sirocco, Over The Bars, Blast Furnace, Dead Point / Rhino Chaser, Daddy'O
Track by Track Review
Blues Surf (Instrumental)
"Earthworm" sports an almost Fillmore-ish sound, but delivers a double picked surf onslaught with a blues edge. While it's a little more blues than surf, it's also hard rockin'.
Underwater Surf (Instrumental)
Liquid reverb and groovy tribal drums create a realm of underwater mystery and looming danger. From a spooky start, "30 Fathoms" moves into a flying double picked rage of terror. No one is safe here!
Cowboy Jazz Surf (Instrumental)
"Terribly True" is an interesting blend of ominous and liquid, of relentless and grumbly. The drums are great in a biker tribal kinda way. The guitar grooves with a deliberate improvisational delivery, and the bass simply grumbles.
Rock oriented jammin' and hard driving, "Skiff" screams out for a large hall to reverberate in.
A kinda "Wipe Out" beat drives the cow while a delicate guitar line angularly meanders over a smooth bass line. Unusual.
Storm Surf (Instrumental)
Introduced kinda like "Banzai Washout," "Pipewrench" grumbles with some double picked lines and a mean outlook. A little relentless, yet full of storm surf imagery.
Persian Gulf Surf (Instrumental)
Tribal drums and rolling bass support double picked guitar in presenting a grungy adventure in wave riding in the Persian Gulf. It's a dark image of danger and power, and looming closeouts.
"Sirocco" sports a fine lead line with spooky tone and distant danger. A little haunting and grumbly.
Biker riff rockin' with a spatial feel. This would be great on an open road with the cops on your tail. No, you're not going to get away, but you just might think you will. Flying guitar licks, some double picked and some screaming for the sky.
Big surf rage, with angular garbage pit thrash and burn danger. Turbulent surf for shortboard risk-takers. Mean and grumbly.
Dead Point / Rhino Chaser
"Dead Point" is structured a lot like an AABA surf instro of old, with double picked grumbling and an aquatic edge. Is "Rhino Chaser" the Duke Galaxy and the Pipeliners song? Groovy melody line with surf imagery in a tribal psychedelic haze.
Soft jazz guitar splashes an afternoon groove for a beboppin' "Daddy'O." A soft way to end a powerful disc.