Phil Dirt - Reverb Central - PO Box 1609, Felton, CA 95018-1609 USA
The Venturas - Here They Are!dotdotdot
artworkThis CD is in mono, though the original album was available in stereo. This Chicago band recorded this album in 1965. It's mostly covers, some well done and recreated in their sound, others just pedestrian.
Picks: Bulldog, Apache, Ginchy, Out Of Limits, Sleep Walk, Ram-Charger, Driving Guitars, Penetration, Runaway, Look For A Star, Walk, Don't Run, Lonesome Town

Track by Track Review


Bulldog dotdotdot
Surf (Instrumental)

The Venturas cut a standard version of the Fireballs' tune, surfed up and solidly played. It's way better than the Challengers' version, with more guts and some fine double picked raving.

Apache dotdotdot
Surf (Instrumental)

The wood blocks are about all that separates this from a typical cover. It's based on the Jorgen Ingmann version, but lacks the string swipe flying arrows. The damped mid section is reverbed into surf territory. Solid, but just not very original. "Apache" was issued as a single with "Ram-Charger" on the B-side.

Ginchy dotdotdotdot
Surf (Instrumental)

"Ginchy" is a finer surf instro, with an infectious melody line and rhythm section. Well played and excellent for drivin' with the top down. The organ is low in the background, and the drums wail. Really cool.

Out Of Limits dotdot
Surf (Instrumental)

More surf than the Marketts, but nothing special.

Sleep Walk dotdot
Surf (Instrumental)

The use of vibrato on the lead guitar gives this otherwise tame rendition a bit of shimmer and charm. It's not enough to make it anything more than a last-dance at the prom selection.

Ram-Charger dotdotdot
Surf (Instrumental)

"Ram-Charger" is a chunky, rhythmic, driven track with a real surf sound. It opens with a slow sad melody over dramatic rolling tom toms, then launches into a topdown kinda thing that is mostly a rhythm, but still captivates. "Ram-Charger" later appeared as a B-side to "Apache."

Driving Guitars dotdotdotdot
Surf (Instrumental)

This is a solid surf interpretation of the Ventures' "Driving Guitars." The delivery is solid, and the surf tones bring it more meanness. Excellent damped slow glissandoes midway through give is a dribbling feel.

Penetration dotdot
Surf (Instrumental)

This is a cover of the Ventures' cover of the Pyramids' hit, with console organ added. It's ok, but really doesn't stand out.

Runaway dotdotdot
Surf (Instrumental)

Unlike the Chantays, this is much truer to the original in structure. While it's fairly tame, it is very enjoyable. Basic treatment, more Ventures than surf. Still, except for the cheesy organ, this is nice.

Look For A Star dotdotdot
Surf (Instrumental)

What an odd cover. Was this done by Paul Anka originally? The carnival organ dominates over damped surf guitar. I can't tell if I hate it or love it...

Walk, Don't Run dotdotdot
Surf (Instrumental)

Pure Ventures 1960 arrangement, not too reverby and without the glissandoes added in '64. Straight version, competent but uneventful and ordinary. It does sport solid energy and spunk.

Lonesome Town dotdotdot
Surf (Instrumental)

Ricky Nelson's slow mushy tune is given the surf treatment the way Paul Johnson and Eddie Bertrand used to recreate teen tragedy anthems in the early days of the Belairs. It's actually quite effective. The churchy organ gives it a sappy air in the breaks.