Phil Dirt - Reverb Central - PO Box 1609, Felton, CA 95018-1609 USA The Untamed Youth - Untamed Melodies
|This is a collection of tracks from their vinyl albums finally on CD, plus their Christmas single, and a couple of unreleased things. They say they're coming out of retirement to save the world from all the "Post Pulp Fiction Lukewarm Surf Slouches" (other bands that are more polished or less obnoxious). This is a long-overdue CD. The surf tracks from these guys were/are among the hottest modern/trad covers around. Much of this CD is in or near mono. Instrumentally, most of the tracks are very good to great. Vocally, they may play with a surf sound, but they seem more a frat band than a surf band.|
Picks: Pabst Blue Ribbon, Haulin' Honda, Santa's Midnight Run, The Hearse, Contentment, Overcast, Russian Roulette
Track by Track Review
"Pabst Blue Ribbon" is really the Original Surfaris' stomper "Moment Of Truth" with a bit of "Church Key" thrown in for disguise. It is not as punchy as later Untamed Youth recordings, but rather is more frat-like. Still, it's a butt mover and a solid surf track.
This is a pretty raw cover of the Richie Podolor-Hondells tune. It's a good track, but unremarkable.
Christmas Surf (Instrumental)
The Untamed Youth do a really strait ahead cover of "Midnight Run," a tune written by Gary Usher, Richard Burns, and KFWB DJ and hit writer Roger Christian, and originally recorded by the Super Stocks and the Pyramids. They just altered the name to fit the premise. It pounds!
"The Hearse" is a killer song written by Lee Hazelwood and cut by Al Casey as it was written, slow and dirgie, then by the Astronauts, who sped it up. Much later, these guys took it and poured the pound on it... The lock-sync guitar/drums/bass opening glissando is nothing short of amazing!!! This is their best recording ever. Lee Hazelwood never intended this kind of pounding assault!
"Contentment" is a gentler Island lagoon number penned by Cooper & Keyes, but I don't know who the original was done by, or if this is it. A fine song.
"Overcast" is a moderately pounding tune from Deke Dickerson's own pen, and it's great! It approaches (but does not reach) the power of their version of "The Hearse."
"Russian Roulette" is a strange cover of the Nevegans / Teen Beats tune, mixed in a very odd stereo, odd for the song, and odd for the band's usual sound.