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Poll
Question: Rate Surf's Up
5 - 60 (32.3%)
4 - 97 (52.2%)
3 - 25 (13.4%)
2 - 2 (1.1%)
1 - 2 (1.1%)
0 - 0 (0%)
Total Voters: 171

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Author Topic: Surf's Up  (Read 77440 times)
Jonas
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« Reply #75 on: February 03, 2006, 06:15:54 PM »

Here's the vocal in question, as isolated as I could get it and tuned down to probably about where it would have been recorded, roughly a whole step down. 

http://www.someoneliving.com/alorbrian.mp3

Odd that at times it sounds very Brianish, Alish, and even Carlish. 

after further review (of listening to your mp3 and the song itself), I have to agree...its a bit shakey. At first, I thought it was Brian, totally, but listening to it now I hear its 'Al's Qualities' for lack of a better term.

either way, GREAT song.  Cool
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« Reply #76 on: February 07, 2006, 09:06:44 AM »

I'm going to have to give "Surf's Up," a rating of 3-stars.
"Long Promised Road" and the entire second side are tops!
But the rest is really non-essential.  I enjoy "Disney Girls"
from the bridge out, but SDT is worthless.  Well, I do have
a soft spot for "Feet."  Bizarre, but cool.

That's 7 out of 10 top tunes.  That's 70%.  A C-minus.
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« Reply #77 on: February 07, 2006, 08:23:29 PM »

I've read that during the recording of A Day In The Life Of A Tree, Brian was crying at the end of the recording session. Some cynical people, who probably don't like the song, have said that Brian was just doing one of his famous put ons. I bet he was actually moved by it. Actually now that I think of it, someone on the old board once posted an interview with Jack Reiley where he said that any stories of Brian crying are BS. Anyway, this song has almost brought me to tears many times. But I still didn't actually cry. I'm not that big a freak.

Isn't Surf's Up one of Neil Young's favorite albums?
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« Reply #78 on: February 14, 2006, 01:19:59 PM »

I think this album is really overrated. Maybe with Dennis material it would be something, but as it is, it's MIU in '71 with Surf's Up and Til I Die. Low quality songs, although Carl made a good effort here. Too Love/Jardine top heavy. Disney Girls is pretty good. The rest is sort of mediocre.

I give it a 3 thanks to Brian's contributions.
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« Reply #79 on: February 19, 2006, 12:39:06 PM »

I know Sunflower and Friends are better but I have a soft spot for this LP which I first heard on its release, then I worked back to the others.  Even the stuff no one's supposed to like.  Sure SDT's lyrics are pedestrian but I give Mike props for singing through a bullhorn (genius touch) and the fuzz-box guitars direct into the console became the signature guitar style for 10cc just a couple years later.   Good work Mr. Desper.   And the ride-out is pleasant enough.  Here come the flame-throwers...

Disney Girls may be Bruce treacle but it was a big turntable hit at the time, the girl DJs at our campus radio station esp. loved that song.  "Feet" I just considered a gag track and so it doesn't bug me, it's just silly.  "Lookin At Tomorrow" has dopey rich white-boy-I'm-sorry-for-you-po'-folk lyrics but it goes down easily musically.  "Free Flows" is Carl's best song; its arrangement was recently stolen by the Welsh band Super Furry Animals for a sound-alike song on their 2005 disc.   And the last three Brian tracks...well...what can I say that everyone else hasn't already waxed eloquent about...
Sometimes even a not-perfect LP by any means can still be a guilty pleasure.  Only it's not guilty.  A 4 overall for me.   
« Last Edit: August 27, 2006, 06:03:31 PM by Dr. Tim » Logged

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« Reply #80 on: February 19, 2006, 08:47:59 PM »

Where the f*** did Jardine pull "Lookin' at Tomorrow" from?  Lina and I are going mental over this one.
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« Reply #81 on: February 20, 2006, 02:52:12 AM »

Someone, perhaps Ian, said he nabbed it from an old folk song hardly anyone's heard...  Quite beautiful song, nice to hear them somewhat successfully branching out into other styles, though the "baba ba ba ba ba ba do do do do" part sounds forced and silly, undermines the quality of the rest of the song... 
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« Reply #82 on: February 20, 2006, 07:32:18 AM »

Someone, perhaps Ian, said he nabbed it from an old folk song hardly anyone's heard...  Quite beautiful song, nice to hear them somewhat successfully branching out into other styles, though the "baba ba ba ba ba ba do do do do" part sounds forced and silly, undermines the quality of the rest of the song... 

No way, the whole thing is psycho.
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« Reply #83 on: February 20, 2006, 10:48:54 AM »

That "ba ba" part is almost my favorite moment on the album.
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« Reply #84 on: February 20, 2006, 01:52:37 PM »

I was waiting for you to say that "SDT" was your favorite part of the album, Ian.

 Wink

I like "Lookin At Tomorrow," by the way. And I could certainly imagine it being plucked from a folk song...if not, he's used his inspirations wonderfully to make a great little song.
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« Reply #85 on: February 24, 2006, 12:36:46 PM »

I'm not a big fan of Surf's Up.

When I listen to the Twofer i'll usually skip right down to "Take A Load Off Your Feet" which I enjoy very much, then down to the ending trio of amazing songs.
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« Reply #86 on: February 24, 2006, 01:07:49 PM »

I'm not a big fan of Surf's Up.

When I listen to the Twofer i'll usually skip right down to "Take A Load Off Your Feet" which I enjoy very much, then down to the ending trio of amazing songs.

Stick to Slow Jams, philistine.
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« Reply #87 on: February 25, 2006, 03:12:20 PM »

A nearly successful attempt to follow up the glorious Sunflower.

Don't Go Near the Water - I never really liked this song until the 2fer dropped.  Now this track makes perfect sense as the follow-up to "Cool Cool Water", both musically and thematically.  Sunflower was all about appreciating nature and its beauty.  Alternately, Surf's Up takes an look at the underside of this beauty, but still retains some of its precursor's optimism.  Lovely coda, by the way.

Long Promised Road - Good, not superb.  nice to see Carl branching out from the comfortable nostalgia of "I Can Hear Music" into something more adventurous.  Lyrics by Jack Reiley are forced, but do continue the themes present in Bob Burchman's words to "It's About Time".  Carl is older and wiser this time around.

Take a Load Off Your Feet - OK, I'm gonna be a hypocrite here.  I usually hate it when people do the old "if only they had switched this track with this track" bit, but in the case of Surf's Up I just can't help myself.  "Take a Load off Your Feet" is a Sunflower outtake, and it belongs on the deluxe edition of that album, NOT on Surf's Up.  It sticks out like a sore thumb here... it's just way, way too goofy for this otherwise serious record.  In its place we should have heard Dennis's "Fourth of July", which would have worked perfectly in this slot.

Disney Girls - Gotta give Bruce a number, and what better song than this sweet ode to simpler times?  Certainly one of the most heartfelt tunes I've ever heard.  Deservedly covered by many artists, including Cass Elliot and Art Garfunkel.

Student Demonstration Time - Gotta give Mike a showcase too, I guess-- so how about this over-the-top re-write of an overplayed Leiber/ Stoeller Coasters' song?  "SDT" is obvious, cliched, simplistic and borderline obnoxious; but then again so is Mike, and as such the song works.  Sorta.

Feel Flows - Amazing.  The best thing Carl Wilson ever wrote or produced.  Cameron Crowe nailed it when he used this over the credits to "Almost Famous".  Says everything about the 70's that needed to be said, and it was only '71 when they recorded it!  Charles Lloyd's flute and the adventurous use of the Moog takes this track to the next level.

Looking at Tomorrow - A cool Al Jardine moment.  Hey that's a phrase you don't hear that much!  Seriously, I dig this.  Nobody would ever believe this was a "Beach Boys song", and that's kind of the point of this album, now isn't it?  I wish Al had stuck to this folkie stuff instead of falling into the pit of oldies despair.

A Day in the Life of a Tree - BW makes his considerable presence felt on one of the album's final tracks.  Sad, mournful, melancholy... that about sums it up.  Dude was not a happy camper at this point, which leads us nicely into...

Til I Die - The last song from BW's pen I would label "classic".  Just an incredible portrait of a individual who's lost control of his life, yet at the same time is existentially coherent enough to view himself via the role of the ultimate observer.   To say Brian bares his soul on this song is a massive understatement.  Heartbreaking.

Surf's Up - It's a damned shame SMiLE never came out in 1967.  If it had, "Surf's Up" the song could have been released in its rightful environment, and the closing slot of this new Beach Boys LP (Landlocked I guess we'll call it) could have gone to Dennis and Stan Shapiro's magnificent "Wouldn't It Be Nice" aka "To Live Again".  As it stands, I'm sure fans were grateful to finally hear this masterpiece of a song, albeit four years late.  But as with 20/20, the overall album suffers from inconsistency in hindsight, by including material that should have belonged to another project.  Note to Alan Boyd: Please find some way to convince Capitol to release the Surf's Up DVD-A, so we can rectify this and finally hear Dennis's great lost song!



Four stars.
« Last Edit: April 15, 2006, 01:24:57 PM by Jason Penick » Logged

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« Reply #88 on: April 15, 2006, 01:06:53 PM »

How about this for an alternate Surf's Up line-up?  You'd have to call it Landlocked, though.


Don't Go Near the Water
Long Promised Road
Fourth of July
Disney Girls [1957]
Big Sur
Feel Flows
Lookin' at Tomorrow
A Day in the Life of a Tree
Til I Die
Wouldn't It Be Nice [To Live Again]


I think this line-up would be more cohesive, as all these songs were recorded during the same sessions.  It eliminates the noisy and simplistic "Student Demonstration Time" in leiu of the peaceful and harmonious original take of "Big Sur", and replaces the two outdated tunes with Dennis's excellent new contributions.
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« Reply #89 on: May 19, 2006, 01:55:49 PM »

I never thought I'd say this, but today when I listened to the twofer, I liked SDT. I still think the lyrics are poor, but mostly just when Mike sings the title. But aside from the sound effects--WHICH I HATE--that's really the only thing I dislike. And the bg vox "There's a riot goin on" and track actually struck me today as quite good.

Whoda thunkit?
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« Reply #90 on: May 19, 2006, 02:35:47 PM »

 Grin
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« Reply #91 on: May 19, 2006, 04:31:52 PM »

i like this lp a lot. brings back a lot of good memories on the group. i just started college when it was released. you had the comeback starting. earlier in august they were on the nbc special good vibrations from central park. time had an article on them and the new lp. there was a buzz in the air about them again. radio was different back then. am was what is now fm. fm was "album tracks" and "underground". i first heard songs from this lp listening to wcfl out of chicago at night when i could pick it up on am. don't go near the water was played a lot by them. i taped an ad for the lp off of wcfl and the price was , ready for this, $2.89. marshall university was just across the river and their radio staion was fm. they played the heck out of sdt. i for one like the song. back then it  helped them a lot getting the air play prior beach boy lp's didn't get. it played an important role for the group back then. when they played ny in sept, i remember reviews of the show liking the song. also played a lot on fm back here was feel flows. man, that is the song i liked. wish carl had kept writing like that. dennis songs were missed but the big picture was they had an lp that finally was selling well and getting great reviews and getting airplay. heck, even the single surf's up was played back here.

5 stars all the way for me..........
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« Reply #92 on: May 19, 2006, 08:50:08 PM »

Grin

F off, man!  Smiley
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« Reply #93 on: May 19, 2006, 10:08:07 PM »

no kiddin...i just think the song itself is bad quality...listening wise
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« Reply #94 on: August 26, 2006, 05:01:16 PM »

I have to say, I never rated this album highly, despite "'Til I Die" and "Surf's Up," both of which I've loved since I first heard the CD about 14 years ago. But I found a vinyl copy in a $1 bin a few days back, and I listened to it today ... and it really got through to me for the first time. I let Side 1 play through and I was pretty surprised that I was enjoying every song with the exception of SDT (and, yes, some of the lyrics in "Don't Go Near the Water" made me cringe a bit). So I played all of Side 2 and I have to say ... while I wouldn't place it among my very favorite BB records, the album is now a solid 4 in my book.
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« Reply #95 on: August 28, 2006, 03:56:07 AM »

Vinyl makes all the difference even on recent releases like Brian's last 3 solo LPs. With Desper 3D sound device it's even better.
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« Reply #96 on: September 13, 2006, 10:44:28 AM »

"Disney Girls" was intended for Bruce's solo Lp.
Art Garfunkel did a better job (with Bruce on piano/vocals).
Pete

the garfunkel version is a lot better. i've always loved 'surfs up' and surpsingly i really like 'a day in the life of a tree'.
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« Reply #97 on: September 14, 2006, 06:36:04 PM »

I replaced 'Disney Girls' and 'Student Demonstration Time' with '4th of July' and 'Lady' , since those were originally supposed to be on the album. It flows much better, and of course those are very good songs. I feel if the Beach Boys had done this for real, then Surf's Up would have been the equal of Sunflower. Maybe even more powerful.
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« Reply #98 on: September 18, 2006, 04:37:13 PM »

"Lady" was also planed for inclusion on "Surf's up" ? Cool, didn't know that or just don't remember. But anyway, I think it wouldn't have fit very well on there....
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« Reply #99 on: September 22, 2006, 08:26:59 PM »

"Lady" was included on early line-ups on the Sunflower LP, but never was intended for Surf's Up AFAIK.  I remember hearing it was originally supposed to be "Fourth of July" in place of "Feet" and "To Live Again" in place of "Surf's Up".  Forget who the source for that info was though.

I really feel the inclusion of those Dennis tracks would have enhanced the album, but then again the title track only seems at home on SMiLE to me.  If I was around in 1971 I may have felt differently about it.  I also would have put the original "Big Sur" in place of "Student Demonstration Time", but that's just me.

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« Last Edit: September 22, 2006, 08:28:10 PM by Jason Penick » Logged

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