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Smiley Smile Stuff => 1960's Beach Boys Albums => Topic started by: Charles LePage @ ComicList on December 26, 2005, 04:04:19 PM



Title: Surfin Safari
Post by: Charles LePage @ ComicList on December 26, 2005, 04:04:19 PM
Discuss, review and rate Surfin Safari, released October 1962.

(http://www.smileysmile.net/images/albums/safari.gif)


Title: Re: Surfin Safari
Post by: I. Spaceman on December 26, 2005, 04:06:48 PM
It's snotty and punk, but not in a good way.
2.
The Shift, Moon Dawg and Surfari/409 are great.


Title: Re: Surfin Safari
Post by: Jason on December 26, 2005, 04:07:54 PM
Cheesy, corny, stupid, irrelevant, irreverent. What's not to love? 3.


Title: Re: Surfin Safari
Post by: I. Spaceman on December 26, 2005, 04:08:56 PM
Quote
What's not to love?

Cuckoo Clock.


Title: Re: Surfin Safari
Post by: the captain on December 26, 2005, 04:09:53 PM
Not my style. 1.


Title: Re: Surfin Safari
Post by: Matinee Idyll on December 27, 2005, 04:26:34 AM
2.

They ain't found their feet yet... Mostly awful.  Moon Dawg is standout track fer me.


Title: Re: Surfin Safari
Post by: SurferGirl7 on December 27, 2005, 01:02:18 PM
Everyone has to start somewhere. No matter what others say, this is a good album. Cuckoo Clock has a great bassline. It's fun because it's just when they are starting out and before the legend gets compilicated.




3 stars  ;D


Title: Re: Surfin Safari
Post by: HighOnLife on December 28, 2005, 04:51:11 AM
Well, wasn't the average age of the band like 15 when this was made? I can't really fault them too much for that.

3 Stars for at least the effort.


Title: Re: Surfin Safari
Post by: Aegir on January 01, 2006, 10:52:28 PM
4/5

The good tracks outweigh the bad.

County Fair, though dismissed as filler by most, is my favorite track on the album.


Title: Re: Surfin Safari
Post by: the captain on January 02, 2006, 08:15:56 AM
3 Stars for at least the effort.

Giving stars for effort would vastly change the history of pop music. Plenty of people have tried hard and failed miserably. I think we ought to vote based on results.


Title: Re: Surfin Safari
Post by: HighOnLife on January 02, 2006, 10:21:15 AM
3 Stars for at least the effort.

Giving stars for effort would vastly change the history of pop music. Plenty of people have tried hard and failed miserably. I think we ought to vote based on results.

I'd like to direct you to the Smiley Smile thread.

;)


Title: Re: Surfin Safari
Post by: the captain on January 02, 2006, 10:22:29 AM
I'm listening to Smiley Smile right now, by the way. Whoops, better put that in the "...listening to now?" thread.

And I dig Smiley Smile.


Title: Re: Surfin Safari
Post by: Reverend Joshua Sloane on January 02, 2006, 11:00:10 AM
I listened to Sufrin Safari and Surfin U.S.A for a week straight without intentionally playing anything else. You can learn a ton about songwriting fom those two albums.

So yeah, I dig.


Title: Re: Surfin Safari
Post by: TV Forces on February 09, 2006, 08:25:53 AM
I just revisted this album the other day and it was much worse
then previously remembered.  It's not hard to list this as one
of the worst debuts of any major recording artist.  Mike's
vocals are often rushed and out of key.  These songs are
way too fast.  Some of the hooks are cool and I enjoy them,
but it really makes the other pre-Pet Sounds albums sound
like masterpieces.  (And some are.)


Title: Re: Surfin Safari
Post by: punkinhead on April 01, 2006, 10:06:53 AM
im a fan of summertime blues myself


Title: Re: Surfin Safari
Post by: Daniel S. on April 01, 2006, 09:26:43 PM
Geez, when Brian was recording this album Phil Spector was already in full swing with his wall of sound. It's no wonder he was in awe of Spector. The production on this record is definitely not "advanced."


Title: Re: Surfin Safari
Post by: Aegir on April 02, 2006, 03:11:24 AM
It sounds better than anything else I've ever heard from a group of teenagers, and lots of things I've heard from adults.

Comparing this to Pet Sounds and stuff is silly.. these songs are pretty catchy and rockin'. Do you want a professional orchestra and sleigh bells and a tack piano on Chug-a-Lug? Please.


Title: Re: Surfin Safari
Post by: I. Spaceman on April 02, 2006, 07:54:14 PM
Aegir, you may want to check out the first album by The Left Banke.


Title: Re: Surfin Safari
Post by: Rocker on April 03, 2006, 06:10:37 AM

County Fair, though dismissed as filler by most, is my favorite track on the album.

Yep, like it when that girl goes "ooohhhh"....

I think it's good for an debut-album. And you have to remember that this is the early sixties, so it fits in quite nicely with alot of the other musical things at that time.
"Summertime Blues" is  mess, but it's probably the only recorded vocal performance of David Marks if I'm not wrong.


Title: Re: Surfin Safari
Post by: punkinhead on April 03, 2006, 06:18:42 AM
this is the only song you can hear david on?


Title: Re: Surfin Safari
Post by: Rocker on April 03, 2006, 02:32:46 PM
this is the only song you can hear david on?

The only song he has kind of a lead vocal at least.


Title: Re: Surfin Safari
Post by: punkinhead on April 03, 2006, 09:38:06 PM
what pARTS?


Title: Re: Surfin Safari
Post by: I. Spaceman on April 04, 2006, 12:51:41 AM
I think that Nick Venet is singing on it with David.


Title: Re: Surfin Safari
Post by: Sir Rob on April 04, 2006, 04:24:56 AM
My favourite 'under-rated' Beach Boys album.  I am completely charmed by the 'innocent' quality of these recordings.  Complaining that the real BB sound hasn't evolved yet is completely beside the point.  Cuckoo Clock is my favourite track!  4/5.


Title: Re: Surfin Safari
Post by: Beach Boy on August 28, 2006, 03:44:28 PM
I like this record, it's a little bit sad but that's the reason why I like it so much.

Cuckoo Clock and Little Girl are my favourite songs.


Title: Re: Surfin Safari
Post by: MBE on August 28, 2006, 09:51:51 PM
Brian doesn't sing high on this album. Silly stuff but fun in a way. The vocals are sloppy so it's hard to tell but I think Brian and Mike sing Summertime Blues. I think I hear Carl too. Dave probably joins in the mix. Surfin USA is WAY better but CHug a Lug, Surfin, Surfin Safari, 409, even Ten Little Indians are pretty cool. Cuckoo Clock's funny in an ironic way.


Title: Re: Surfin Safari
Post by: Shady on September 09, 2006, 04:55:14 PM
I had 2 get this piece of trash to get surfin usa.....


Title: Re: Surfin Safari
Post by: Magic Transistor Radio on October 25, 2006, 10:37:51 PM
Quote
What's not to love?

Cuckoo Clock.

That is my favorite song on the album!!


Title: Re: Surfin Safari
Post by: lance on April 30, 2008, 05:40:48 AM
Well, Im easy to please, I think. Ill give it a three out of five. I enjoy it, I like the sound and the energy. When I listen to it, I can almost feel the band's innocent excitement. I'm sure in 1962 it was even cooler. It's got humor, energy and some good tunes. A few of the tunes could have been produced a bit better, I don't mean soundwise, but I feel they had a good melody and they squandered it a bit, but that's what beginner's do I reckon. It' sall part of the charm.


Title: Re: Surfin Safari
Post by: Ana-Lu on April 30, 2008, 05:02:53 PM
Believe it or not, there was a time when "Surfin' Safari" was the ONLY pre-Pet Sounds 60s BB album in print (not counting compilations).  It was a post-Endless Summer reissue with nothing but the track titles on the center of the back.  I filled up the (wide) back margins with Rat Fink stickers on my copy.

I had "Endless Summer" and then bought this.  I thought every Beach Boys record I would buy would be as great as "Endless Summer."  After spinning it I thought this album sucked and I was only 10 years old.  I can't even imagine what I'd think of it now.

Still, I understand they were kids doing the best record they could.  That's fine, but it doesn't mean I want to be subjected to it.


Title: Re: Surfin Safari
Post by: TimeToGetAlone on May 01, 2008, 04:06:45 PM
I don't enjoy this that much, with not really a song I consider essential.  Historically it's relevant, but I'd take the notorious albums of the 70's and 80's ahead of this in terms of sheer listening experience.  It's not that inconsistent, but it has a low high.  Some of the ideas are not bad, notably the verses of County Fair (which was used in I Do I think) and Cuckoo Clock.  Based on the result here though, they need work.

Surfin' Safari - 3/5
County Fair - 3/5
Ten Little Indians - 3/5
Chug-A-Lug - 3/5
Little Girl (You're My Miss America) - 4/5
409 - 3.5/5
Surfin' - 3/5
Heads You Win, Tails I Lose - 3/5
Summertime Blues - 3/5
Cuckoo Clock - 3.5/5
Moon Dawg - 3/5

That'll round to a 3.
The Shift - 3.5/5



Title: Re: Surfin Safari
Post by: Poprocks on June 13, 2008, 10:59:55 PM
Not one of my favourites.  1 star.

Track picks:  Surfin' Safari (+), Moon Dawg (+)


Title: Re: Surfin Safari
Post by: CarlsDarlin on January 21, 2009, 05:58:02 PM
3.  I love Little Miss America. 


Title: Re: Surfin Safari
Post by: Black Tiger on January 24, 2009, 06:34:03 PM
I rate it a 3. Not a great album overall, but a few songs I really love.

It's a lot of fun, and I'd rather listen to Chug-A-Lug, Ten Little Indians, Cuckoo Clock, or Little Girl than anything on Sunflower


Title: Re: Surfin Safari
Post by: mikeyj on January 24, 2009, 07:23:33 PM
It's a lot of fun, and I'd rather listen to Chug-A-Lug, Ten Little Indians, Cuckoo Clock, or Little Girl than anything on Sunflower

Hmm, are you just saying this to get a reaction ;) If you are serious though I'm shocked! So you'd take Chug-A-Lug over This Whole World for instance? :o


Title: Re: Surfin Safari
Post by: Black Tiger on January 26, 2009, 08:22:09 PM
I'm serious, and yes, I'd take Chug-a-Lug over This Whole World six days a week and twice on Sunday. With Chug-a-Lug what you see is what you get, a fun little root beer anthem written by teenagers. Sunflower is self-important AOR pap with too much Bruce Johnston. Lyrically, it's no more advanced than Surfin' Surfari. Give me:

"Here a mug, there a mug, everybody chug-a-lug
Give me some root beer (chug-a-lug chug-a-lug chug-a-lug)"

over:

"You are there like everywhere like everyone you see
Happy cause you're living and you're free"

The former is just a goofy, fun song; the latter is bad high school poetry


Title: Re: Surfin Safari
Post by: mikeyj on January 26, 2009, 09:03:18 PM
Okay that's cool, I can see where you are coming from but I still disagree with you... Sunflower, while not flawless, is a pretty solid album in my opinion... I guess I have never really analyzed the lyrics though as I don't care for lyrics too much.


Title: Re: Surfin Safari
Post by: lance on January 27, 2009, 01:25:27 AM
I think that the lyrics of This Whole World are alright. That line you quoted is deeper than you think...It's Brian trying to comfort himself. Brian is NOT like every one he sees, he just wants to be. (And not everyone is happy just because they're living and they're free, but shouldn't they be?)

I think the lyrics are coming from the same place as Chug a Lug, which I do kind of enjoy, too.


Title: Re: Surfin Safari
Post by: mikeyj on January 27, 2009, 02:19:53 AM
I always find it strange when people criticize other peoples words/lyrics cause they say that it's not deep enough, too arty or whatever... I mean, maybe for the critic it is, but who says it's not 100% heartfelt from the writers point of view?


Title: Re: Surfin Safari
Post by: Black Tiger on January 27, 2009, 10:10:25 AM
You're both right to a degree. It wasn't a great example for me to pick because I also don't really care much about lyrics, haha. My point was just that people are so reverent about Sunflower, and I just don't see why. Musically I find it boring, and lyrically...I appreciate the "team" effort of the album I guess.


Title: Re: Surfin Safari
Post by: TimeToGetAlone on January 30, 2009, 06:43:20 PM
Personally, I'd never dream of putting Surfin' Safari on the same level as Sunflower.  It's probably my least favorite Beach Boys album.  That doesn't mean it's bad, for nothing in it is horrible.  There just isn't much I desire about it, and I'd rather one great song and 11 clunkers than 12 songs that I'm indifferent on.  Just me of course.  The only thing I really cherish about it is that it led to amazing things in the future.


Title: Re: Surfin Safari
Post by: lance on April 25, 2009, 08:06:19 AM
Listened to this last night. I still like it. I love the innocence, I love the off-the-wallness of some of the non-surfing songs. It's silly but there's something that gets it up for me in there; I guess it's the spirit of the whole thing, the weird sort of sadness mixed with humor in songs like County Fair or Heads You Win.


Title: Re: Surfin Safari
Post by: variable2 on April 25, 2009, 06:54:46 PM
I think that the lyrics of This Whole World are alright. That line you quoted is deeper than you think...It's Brian trying to comfort himself. Brian is NOT like every one he sees, he just wants to be. (And not everyone is happy just because they're living and they're free, but shouldn't they be?)

I think the lyrics are coming from the same place as Chug a Lug, which I do kind of enjoy, too.

My opinion is that those lyrics from This Whole World are about spiritual love, and the feeling of Oneness with the world/cosmos/people.  Brian experienced this in his psychedelic experiences..and maybe in meditation as well?


Title: Re: Surfin Safari
Post by: sockittome on April 29, 2009, 07:46:49 PM
I rate it a 3. Not a great album overall, but a few songs I really love.

It's a lot of fun, and I'd rather listen to Chug-A-Lug, Ten Little Indians, Cuckoo Clock, or Little Girl than anything on Sunflower

Hey, don't be picking on Sunflower!!  If you meant to type Smiley Smile, I'll go along with that!  8)

.....well, if you don't count GV and H&V, of course.


Title: Re: Surfin Safari
Post by: Summer_Days on May 19, 2009, 11:44:33 PM
You know, it's not too often I listen to Surfin' Safari and Surfin' USA, but when I do, I always enjoy where it's all coming from. Sure, this album is quite primitive and artless, like crude cave paintings by a 2-year-old compared to much of the spires of brilliance that would come later. But you know what? This and Surfin' USA are FUN LPs to listen to, and I think that was the whole point, and it seems like, judging by so many comments on this album, a lot of people tend to forget about fun records. It's not high art, it's not art of ANY kind, but I find it oddly enjoyable and it puts a smile on my face. Especially 'County Fair' and 'Chug-A-Lug'. I'd honestly rather here the young, Pendleton-clad scrubby South Bay lads here barely bash out 'Little Girl (You're My Miss America)' than hear much of their pot brownie-induced giggles slugging through the mud and demented barbershop of Smiley Smile. There, I said it.

(and I like Smiley Smile...just sayin'....)


Title: Re: Surfin Safari
Post by: LetHimRun on June 06, 2009, 05:55:13 PM
A 3 for me. Ten Little Indians is not a favorite at all. I really like Cuckoo Clock for some reason. I think it is Brian's voice. A first complete album that wasn't too bad.

Highlights include the title track, 409, Cuckoo Clock, and Surfin'.

4/5 Surfin' Safari
3/5 County Fair
2/5 Ten Little Indians
3/5 Chug-a-Lug
3/5 Little Girl
4/5 409
3.5/5 Surfin'
3/5 Heads-Tails
3/5 Summertime Blues
3.5/5 Cuckoo Clock
3/5 Moon Dawg
3/5 The Shift


Title: Re: Surfin Safari
Post by: Mahalo on December 22, 2009, 09:55:12 PM
Just got the twofer the other day...man, this is a lot of fun..... I love it. Gave it a 3.

I think Mike's voice sounds great, and there is a purity that prevails throughout this record that makes me feel younger again, and also like a kid in southern california in the early 1960's, I guess...if that makes any sense...also reminds me why I got into the band in the first place, many years ago....


Title: Re: Surfin Safari
Post by: DefMode66 on February 14, 2010, 09:25:35 AM
Surfin Safari peaked at #37 on the charts and had a 37 week run. All of the instruments are played by the 5 Beach Boys and shows their raw talent but great talent non the less.


Title: Re: Surfin Safari
Post by: Nicko on February 27, 2010, 05:47:07 PM
I give this album a rather harsh 2 out of 5. The musicianship is fairly rudimentary and the harmonies are nowhere near as developed as they would later become. There are several cute songs like the title track, Surfin', 409 and Chug-a-lug. I also like Cuckoo Clock but maybe that's just me. It's a shame that they didn't include any of the slow songs that they'd been working on like Surfer Girl, Their Hearts were Full of Spring or Lonely Sea.


Title: Re: Surfin Safari
Post by: Don_Zabu on April 14, 2010, 04:24:14 PM
If nothing else, this album made me appreciate the technical brilliance of the later albums more than I usually did.

Seriously, try listening to "Chug-A-Lug", and then immediately listen to "Kiss Me Baby". It's a great effect.


Title: Re: Surfin Safari
Post by: Surfing Moose on August 04, 2010, 11:24:14 AM
2 points

always remember, these are kids with little experience, a garage band. If you compare it with Phil Spector at that time, he had professional musicians that created his "wall of sound" For a first album it's good with some classic tracks, but of course compared with what to come...


Title: Re: Surfin Safari
Post by: Curtis Leon on November 04, 2010, 08:32:41 PM
Brian doesn't sing high on this album. Silly stuff but fun in a way. The vocals are sloppy so it's hard to tell but I think Brian and Mike sing Summertime Blues. I think I hear Carl too. Dave probably joins in the mix. Surfin USA is WAY better but CHug a Lug, Surfin, Surfin Safari, 409, even Ten Little Indians are pretty cool. Cuckoo Clock's funny in an ironic way.

What's odd is that Brian obviously knew how to sing in falsetto, doing it as well as he does on Surfin' USA on both versions of "Barbie". AFAIK, it was recorded before most of the Surfin' Safari sessions, so he knew the technique, and he certainly knew how to sing with it... he just chose not to. I think "Cuckoo Clock" would've been a lot better with a falsetto treatment, though.


Title: Re: Surfin Safari
Post by: Andrew G. Doe on November 05, 2010, 03:12:49 AM
Surfin Safari peaked at #37 on the charts and had a 37 week run. All of the instruments are played by the 5 Beach Boys and shows their raw talent but great talent non the less.

#32, and a 39 week run (in two instalments).


Title: Re: Surfin Safari
Post by: Magic City Surfer on February 11, 2011, 08:16:06 AM

Who is Larry as referenced in Chug-A-Lug? I assume Gary is Gary Usher, but who's Larry?



Title: Re: Surfin Safari
Post by: pixletwin on February 11, 2011, 08:21:07 AM
This album reminds me a lot of The Wiggles. That being said, I love it. 3/5


Title: Re: Surfin Safari
Post by: musicismylife101 on June 27, 2012, 04:07:52 PM
Good first album. Full of simple but catchy songs. Love Dennis's vocals on Little Girl and Brian's on Cuckoo Clock. Summertime Blues is also a nice track, and unfortunately the only one where David gets a co-lead (correct me if I'm wrong on that).  Chug-A-Lug and Surfin' are good tracks as well.


Title: Re: Surfin Safari
Post by: JanBerryFarm on July 07, 2012, 01:03:08 AM
I think that Nick Venet is singing on it with David.

Yes. It's Dave with Nik.

Why are so called hard-core Beach Boy people so ignorant about this ?



Title: Re: Surfin Safari
Post by: JanBerryFarm on July 08, 2012, 10:26:36 AM
That was some kind of a harmless joke, wasn't it?

Harmless yes...a joke? I don't believe so.

Dave Marks and Nik Venet are the vocalists on Summertime Blues.

Nik played guitar too. He wasn't in the music business simply because he could type and add columns well, ya know.
 ;)


Title: Re: Surfin Safari
Post by: JanBerryFarm on July 08, 2012, 08:30:53 PM
My apologies.  :o

I accidently typed moon dawg, when I meant Summertime Blues. I'm also handling a 'Moon Dawg/Nik Venet' controversy in another thread, and they overlap slightly in my mind.

Let me start over.

The Vocalists on Summertime Blues are David Marks and Nik Venet.


Title: Re: Surfin Safari
Post by: JanBerryFarm on July 08, 2012, 08:38:31 PM
My apologies.  :o

I accidently typed moon dawg, when I meant Summertime Blues.

Let me start over.

The Vocalists on Summertime Blues are David Marks and Nik Venet.

No, they aren't. It's Carl with David + Mike.


Yes, that's the popular notion. But surprisingly, It's Dave and Nik. (+ Mike)
Even the Dave and Carl idea has never been substantiated.
For years,  many people didn't even know that it was Dave singing.

So, Dave and Nik can be a bit of a shock.
But then, Beach Boy archealogy is famous for big surprises.


Title: Re: Surfin Safari
Post by: JanBerryFarm on July 08, 2012, 09:05:48 PM
Uh huh... I know.

It's great that you're familiar with Carls voice. It's sooo fine.

Remember however, that Carl didn't do any lead vocals on their records until Shut Down Vol. 2, when he made his lead vocal debut with Pom Pom Play Girls. And I should add that for years people thought that was Brian singing.

That said, let me suggest that in the Surfin' Safari days, Carls voice was a bit different than what we normally hear on his classics such as God Only Knows and Good Vibrations.

It's also important to understand that Summertime Blues was essentially Dave's lead. He sang it live with Carls harmony, yes....but in the studio, it was different.

Initially, Dave ran through track after track until he finally got his phrasing straight. Then Nik came in on harmony and they worked that through a few times too, until it was polished enough. It's still not really polished, but we love it anyway. That's part of the charm.

 :)


Title: Re: Surfin Safari
Post by: JanBerryFarm on July 08, 2012, 10:29:48 PM

Remember however, that Carl didn't do any lead vocals on their records until Shut Down Vol. 2, when he made his lead vocal debut with Pom Pom Play Girl. And I should add that for years people thought that was Brian singing.

That said, let me suggest that in the Surfin' Safari days, Carl's voice was a bit different than what we normally hear on his classics such as God Only Knows and Good Vibrations.

It's also important to understand that Summertime Blues was essentially Dave's lead. He sang it live with Carl's harmony, yes....but in the studio, it was different.

 :)
Yes, it was a bit different but I recognize Carl's voice quite easily in any song. As for Pom Pom Play Girl, well, I suppose, I'm not counted in with "people", because I never thought the vocals were Brian's.

Just relistened to this song and it still sounds Carl & David + Mike's bass vocals. Can you give me the source where it is said that Nik was in SB? Anyway, thanks for the info about David singing it live. I wasn't aware of that.

Sure.. the 'source' is not a book. It's the original session tapes.

btw.... Dave actually did quite a bit of singing in the early 'early' days. When they were left to their devices out on the road...without Brian...they did what they had to do. They played and sang lot's of 50's and early 60's rock covers, because that (plus surf instrumentals) was all they had to draw upon.

What's cool about Dave was the fact that he had the cajones to just do what had to be done. If you've ever been in a band... one of the interesting things about lead singing is that if you're doing a lot of it, you really need a break every few songs. I'm sure that Mike welcomed somebody else taking the pressure off. That was Dave. He wasn't afraid to 'go for it'.



Title: Re: Surfin Safari
Post by: Please delete my account on March 03, 2013, 12:27:25 AM
I think this the Beach Boys' "Cocoanuts".

In that it's not quite as good as what came after ("Surfin' USA"/"Animal Crackers"), but it's not so far off that it deserves been ranked down with the lowest of the late work, as it seems to be for a lot of people here. It still sounds like the Beach Boys, and I'd argue it's pretty essential. None of the songs are bad; except, in my opinion, "Little Girl".

One thing I find interesting about this album is that it confounds a lot of expectations. You think an early Beach Boys record will have lots of covers and instrumentals, but there's only three covers and only one instrumental. You think it's all gonna be about surfin', but there are only two surfin'-themed songs. There was a Beach Boys album-by-album review that referred to this album as "mostly surfing songs co-written by Mike Love" (or something like that), which proved the writer hadn't listened to the album in a while, or read the songwriting credits.


Title: Re: Surfin Safari
Post by: Mendota Heights on March 03, 2013, 01:54:30 AM
This is my favorite Beach Boys album, I therefor give it a 5!


Title: Re: Surfin Safari
Post by: Dudd on March 23, 2013, 06:00:15 AM
Eh. Nothing that good, but nothing terrible. 2.


Title: Re: Surfin Safari
Post by: SMiLE-addict on March 24, 2013, 07:36:31 PM
I love Cuckoo Clock!

This album sounds rather sloppy, but what do you expect from a bunch of teenagers in 1961-62? I find that the sloppiness gives it some charm.


Title: Re: Surfin Safari
Post by: Unreconstructed Wilsonite on July 10, 2013, 04:54:13 AM
Surfin' Safari is easily my favourite Beach Boys surf song, and this is coming from someone who doesn't listen to the Beach Boys for their surf music.

Although "Little Girl (My Miss America)" is my favourite track on this album.

2.5 is probably the most appropriate rating for this album, it's not particularly good, it's not quite bad, but this is their first album.


Title: Re: Surfin Safari
Post by: RiC on November 11, 2013, 08:33:55 AM
2/5.
The worst BB album after Summer In Paradise. Though Surfin' Safari (the song) is a classic, it's 100 times better than Surfin U.S.A., or any other surfing song. But the album is just unlistenable, it mostly sounds like bunch of teenagers who can't play an instrument trying to sound like a real professional band, which they don't. But oh I almost forgot that that actually was the situation at the moment. I don't hate this album, but I don't ever listen to it either.


Title: Re: Surfin Safari
Post by: Mr. Wilson on December 10, 2013, 06:29:06 PM
This is a typical teenage rock band for its day.. The kind you would see at a middle or high school dance.. They aint no Beatles but this IS pre Beatles..  I don't listen to this much but its MUCH better than Surfers Pajama Party.. A good but not great start.. At this stage 1962 The Beatles sounded much better because they were SEASONED live performers.. {Hamburg}.. BB are not and that is the main difference to me..  3/5


Title: Re: Surfin Safari
Post by: KDS on April 07, 2015, 08:13:09 AM
Here's one of the reasons I joined this board, to give my two cents regarding the catalog of one of my favorite bands.  

For their first effort, I'd give it a 3 out of 5.  

The obvious highlights are Surfin Safari and 409.  I also really like Heads I Win, Tails You Lose.  The Boys do a pretty decent version of Summertime Blues.  County Fair and Chug a Lug are fun tracks.  Surfin, of course, is significant as their first composition.  

Overall, the album has a certain charm to it.  The next record would be a huge step up production wise, but Surfin Safari is still a fun album to listen to.  


Title: Re: Surfin Safari
Post by: NateRuvin on July 27, 2015, 12:17:40 PM
By itself, it's a pretty enjoyable rock n' roll album. When it's not compared to classics that would be coming within the next few years, like Surfer Girl and Today!, it's actually a lot of fun to listen to.
It's a great document of the BBs when they were still a garage band, made up of family. The brothers (Brian, Denny, Carl) the cousin (Mike) the friends (Dave and Al on Surfin') and their dad, an abusive one, but still family (Murray).
The weak part of the album, and even BW realized this, was audio quality. Whether it was the lack of acoustics in "the tower's" studio or Murray and Nik making the band "trebly", the album SOUNDS horrible. You can't really hear Brian's bass or Denny's drums. It's mostly Mike's voice and Carl's guitar upfront, and everything else is buried.
There are a lot of great tracks on this record---
Surfin', Surfin' Safari, 409, Heads You Win Tails I Lose, Cuckoo Clock, Moondawg, and Denny's first vocal Little Girl.

Overall, a pretty good record. 4.


Title: Re: Surfin Safari
Post by: Bean Bag on July 27, 2015, 08:56:57 PM
I've spoken many times about this album, but I guess never in the official Review Thread.  So...

What a wonderful album this is. I first heard it around the time I first heard Smiley Smile -- shortly after I first heard Smiley, I bought Safari.  And it struck me how similar the two were.  The same vein.

Both were very organic sounding.  Very damp.  Smiley was very grassy and off the path.  But Safari was very beachy and on the path, so-to-speak.  Both were garage.  Do it at home.  But still incredibly honest, beautiful albums.

Today, Safari is a gift.  A chance to relive where it all started.  In no other time could this have been captured.  God Bless.


Title: Re: Surfin Safari
Post by: Mike's Beard on September 26, 2015, 06:03:46 PM
Surfin' Safari - 5/5
County Fair - 1/5
Ten Little Indians - 3/5
Chug-A-Lug - 1/5
Little Girl (You're My Miss America) - 1/5
409 - 5/5
Surfin' - 4/5
Heads You Win, Tails I Lose - 0/5
Summertime Blues - 0/5
Cuckoo Clock - 1/5
Moon Dawg - 3/5
The Shift - 1/5

Well we all have to start somewhere. In fairness they were just kids. Most of the Wilson/Usher songs are sh*t. Drumwise, Dennis was clearly learning on the job. The trademark vocal stack had not been figured out yet - Dennis is much too loud in the mix.
Three classic tunes and a load of afterthoughts. Not to worry, things were about to dramatically improve.
1.5/5 overall.


Title: Re: Surfin Safari
Post by: JK on November 21, 2015, 04:04:47 AM
There are some good to great songs here. In fact there's nothing I'd skip.

"The Shift" always gets short shrift, which is a pity. That unique chord sequence is a harbinger of things to come.

4/5.


Title: Re: Surfin Safari
Post by: Lonely Summer on April 20, 2016, 11:18:44 PM
I've spoken many times about this album, but I guess never in the official Review Thread.  So...

What a wonderful album this is. I first heard it around the time I first heard Smiley Smile -- shortly after I first heard Smiley, I bought Safari.  And it struck me how similar the two were.  The same vein.

Both were very organic sounding.  Very damp.  Smiley was very grassy and off the path.  But Safari was very beachy and on the path, so-to-speak.  Both were garage.  Do it at home.  But still incredibly honest, beautiful albums.

Today, Safari is a gift.  A chance to relive where it all started.  In no other time could this have been captured.  God Bless.
I like this review. Had the album on tonight, and it's very appealing in its freshness, simplicity. a better debut album that most bands of the era.


Title: Re: Surfin Safari
Post by: B.E. on January 12, 2017, 04:22:20 PM
Surfin' Safari (album): 3.5/5

Today, Safari is a gift.  A chance to relive where it all started. In no other time could this have been captured.  God Bless.
Agreed completely!

If I had to describe this album in one word, I might say "authentic". If I were to create an ideal playlist for myself I'd consider replacing a few of the weaker tracks with Cindy, Land Ahoy, and/or Lonely Sea. Those songs would fit in very nicely. Even still, this album holds together very well as a listening experience and takes me back to 1962 California, as well as, my own teenage years growing up in a small beach town on the east coast.
 
Surfin’ Safari - 5/5 - Classic. Love everything about it. I don’t even mind Mike’s vocal flub at  1:29. Incredible promise!
County Fair - 3.5/5 – Andrea Carlo’s voice was perfect for this track! “Goodbye muscles, I don’t need you anymore. Loser!”  :lol Nik Venet did a fine job as well, although it can get irritating after a while. On this song and Heads You Win - Tails I Lose, Mike’s vocal serves the song perfectly. It’s got a frailty to it. He sounds like the protagonist. Young and insecure.
Ten Little Indians – 3.5/5 – I really enjoy this song. I like the Running Bear connection. I love the tempo. Anyone else notice how prominent Dennis is vocally on this album!? Second only to Mike.
Chug-A-Lug – 3.5/5 – Another energetic, fun song. Side 1 is very strong. I really enjoy Mike’s bass vocal. Fun to sing-a-long to.
Little Girl (You’re My Miss America) – 3.5/5 – What an endearing lead vocal by Dennis. I’m surprised there wasn’t more of that on subsequent albums. This album has a lot of charm. The only bothersome aspect for me is Mike’s backing vocal. I like the part, but he just sounds so unsure. I don’t think he hits the notes well at all.
409 – 4.5/5 – Classic. Not necessarily a personal favorite, I’m much more of a surfer than a car guy. Again, Dennis is very prominent in the backing vocals. He was so key to their blend. I really miss Brian’s vocal arrangements and Dennis’ backing vocals as the ‘60s came to an end and the '70s wore on.
Surfin’ – 4/5 – Love this song. What a great way to start it all off! I always look forward to that little vocal flourish at 2:06 just as the song quickly fades. Nice touch.
Heads You Win – Tails I Lose - 3/5 – Side 2 doesn’t quite live up to Side 1, but I still enjoy this song. I like the line “heads you win, tails I lose." It’s worthy of a song. I’m glad they turned the tables in the end.
Summertime Blues – 2.5/5 – I'm not a big fan of the song. This version is fine. Fits the album.
Cuckoo Clock – 3/5 – Not a favorite, but enjoyable. The silliness of the song certainly adds to the charm. I prefer Cindy, though. I must say, by the time I got around to listening to this album I was really surprised by Brian’s singing (or lack thereof) relative to subsequent albums. If only Lonely Sea were on this album. One of my favorite songs and a great performance by Brian.
Moon Dawg – 3/5 – Nice.
The Shift – 3.5/5 – This one has grown on me a bit. I always thought it was funny how Paul made a big deal about the Beatles singing “I’d love to turn you on” in 1967, considering this song…


Title: Re: Surfin Safari
Post by: WyattFunderburk on December 10, 2017, 12:20:11 AM
We recently covered this album on our podcast!  Check it out!

http://sailon.podbean.com/e/4-surfin-safari/