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Author Topic: BB albums sabotaged by one song  (Read 3058 times)
RangeRoverA1
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« Reply #25 on: March 28, 2019, 04:54:05 PM »

20/20 - "The Nearest Faraway Place" Edit: well, it's ditty, trifle. Will replace it with "Bluebirds...", real spoilsport track in album
C&TP - "Cuddle Up"
LDC - LDC (dull start)
SU - "Disney Girls"
Shut Down 2 - "Why Do Fools" (ruins good album)
Christmas - "Merry Christmas Baby"
« Last Edit: March 28, 2019, 05:03:05 PM by RangeRoverA1 » Logged

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« Reply #26 on: March 29, 2019, 06:14:26 AM »

I mean, the '79 "Here Comes the Night" isn't literally the worst thing they ever released, and it is arguably the most harmony-intensive overtly "disco" song ever released.

But beyond all the obvious reasons it was a clunker (out of step with the BB style, too late for the peak "disco" era to be a hit, etc.), it's also not much of  *Beach Boys* song. Bruce and Curt Becher and their guys did most of the tracking and vocals, and then Mike, Carl, and Al supposedly came in and added one final layer.

I never realized that Curt and other non-BBs sang on that track.
Is it mainly the "dits" and the like?


I'm guessing during some other era of the band's career when they weren't floundering and desperate to not *completely* blow the new CBS deal and accompanying payday, maybe they would have told Bruce to toss out the 37-minute disco track. But they needed to not piss off CBS even more, they needed an album done, Brian was out of it, and Bruce was left semi-in-charge. Why they didn't just pull a third "Bambu" era song or something, I dunno.

Listen to "Full Sail." *That's* Bruce taking on his most effective latter-day role within the band, as a facilitator to getting stuff done and adding nice clean layers of backing vocals.

It's interesting, because the LA Light Album does have a backing vocal harmony sound that is pretty unique, and while I can tell that the album's backing vocals don't quite sound like other BBs albums (presumably because it's the only time that mainly Bruce and Carl did most of those vocals), I nevertheless can't really say that I can ID Bruce/Carl's voices in the backing vox and say "that's clearly a wall of Bruces/Carls" in the way that it's much more obvious when it's a wall of Brians on songs like Transcendental Meditation, or the Don't Talk unused intro.

Would be super duper interesting if backing vocals-only mixes could get created from this era. I hope we don't have to wait another decade for that to happen!

Regarding "Here Comes the Night", I don't know how much research/digging has taken place or AFM sheets uncovered in more recent years. C-man and others may have some newer info. But the "story" I recall from past years is that Bruce and Becher and their guys did the track, and then the Beach Boys (minus Brian and Dennis) came in mainly to add Carl's lead parts, Mike's lead/bass parts, and maybe one extra layer of backing vocals.

If you listen to the song, the backing vocals do seem to have that late 70s/early 80s anonymous sort of "Looking Back with Love"-sounding backing vocals.

On Bruce's backing vocals on the "LA" album, I'd say he's by far most prominent on "Full Sail." In fact, while Carl (and presumably Mike a bit based on extant documentation) are also on those backing vocals, they sound very much like stacks of Bruce. I think Carl might be a bit more noticeable on the wordless "aaaaah" sort of backing vocals, while the "Fuuuulllll Saiiilllll" backing vocals sound like a lot of Bruce, to the point where if we didn't have documentation that Carl and Mike are on it, I'd totally believe it's entirely Bruce.
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« Reply #27 on: March 29, 2019, 07:28:43 AM »

I mean, the '79 "Here Comes the Night" isn't literally the worst thing they ever released, and it is arguably the most harmony-intensive overtly "disco" song ever released.

But beyond all the obvious reasons it was a clunker (out of step with the BB style, too late for the peak "disco" era to be a hit, etc.), it's also not much of  *Beach Boys* song. Bruce and Curt Becher and their guys did most of the tracking and vocals, and then Mike, Carl, and Al supposedly came in and added one final layer.

I never realized that Curt and other non-BBs sang on that track.
Is it mainly the "dits" and the like?


I'm guessing during some other era of the band's career when they weren't floundering and desperate to not *completely* blow the new CBS deal and accompanying payday, maybe they would have told Bruce to toss out the 37-minute disco track. But they needed to not piss off CBS even more, they needed an album done, Brian was out of it, and Bruce was left semi-in-charge. Why they didn't just pull a third "Bambu" era song or something, I dunno.

Listen to "Full Sail." *That's* Bruce taking on his most effective latter-day role within the band, as a facilitator to getting stuff done and adding nice clean layers of backing vocals.

It's interesting, because the LA Light Album does have a backing vocal harmony sound that is pretty unique, and while I can tell that the album's backing vocals don't quite sound like other BBs albums (presumably because it's the only time that mainly Bruce and Carl did most of those vocals), I nevertheless can't really say that I can ID Bruce/Carl's voices in the backing vox and say "that's clearly a wall of Bruces/Carls" in the way that it's much more obvious when it's a wall of Brians on songs like Transcendental Meditation, or the Don't Talk unused intro.

Would be super duper interesting if backing vocals-only mixes could get created from this era. I hope we don't have to wait another decade for that to happen!

Regarding "Here Comes the Night", I don't know how much research/digging has taken place or AFM sheets uncovered in more recent years. C-man and others may have some newer info. But the "story" I recall from past years is that Bruce and Becher and their guys did the track, and then the Beach Boys (minus Brian and Dennis) came in mainly to add Carl's lead parts, Mike's lead/bass parts, and maybe one extra layer of backing vocals.

If you listen to the song, the backing vocals do seem to have that late 70s/early 80s anonymous sort of "Looking Back with Love"-sounding backing vocals.

On Bruce's backing vocals on the "LA" album, I'd say he's by far most prominent on "Full Sail." In fact, while Carl (and presumably Mike a bit based on extant documentation) are also on those backing vocals, they sound very much like stacks of Bruce. I think Carl might be a bit more noticeable on the wordless "aaaaah" sort of backing vocals, while the "Fuuuulllll Saiiilllll" backing vocals sound like a lot of Bruce, to the point where if we didn't have documentation that Carl and Mike are on it, I'd totally believe it's entirely Bruce.

 Interesting. I wonder if those vocals were meant as a placeholder by Bruce, with the intent of them eventually being filled in by before band, and that just never happened.
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« Reply #28 on: March 30, 2019, 01:58:39 PM »

20/20 - "The Nearest Faraway Place" Edit: well, it's ditty, trifle. Will replace it with "Bluebirds...", real spoilsport track in album
C&TP - "Cuddle Up"
LDC - LDC (dull start)
SU - "Disney Girls"
Shut Down 2 - "Why Do Fools" (ruins good album)
Christmas - "Merry Christmas Baby"

I think DG on the SU album was quite perfect.
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« Reply #29 on: March 30, 2019, 02:47:04 PM »

Student Demonstration Time on Surf's Up. Really the 1 song that messes up a classic album
This.
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« Reply #30 on: March 30, 2019, 08:38:35 PM »


With the exception of the Holland album, I can't think of any Mike Love penned song that adorned and fortified a Beach Boys album. Sumahamina, Everyone's In Love With You, Daybreak Over The Ocean are all sub-par product that didn't stand up well against what else was on the album. Student Demo Time should never have been included on Surf's up but I can see Mike pulling a meltdown by stomping his feet, screaming and even threatening to sue someone if it wasn't.  Evil
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« Reply #31 on: March 31, 2019, 03:17:54 PM »


With the exception of the Holland album, I can't think of any Mike Love penned song that adorned and fortified a Beach Boys album. Sumahamina, Everyone's In Love With You, Daybreak Over The Ocean are all sub-par product that didn't stand up well against what else was on the album. Student Demo Time should never have been included on Surf's up but I can see Mike pulling a meltdown by stomping his feet, screaming and even threatening to sue someone if it wasn't.  Evil

I think because of the times it needed to be included. When WMMS in Cleveland got a hold of the album, the first cut they played was SDT with a nice introduction from the DJ. WMMS was no slouch in the world of big-time radio stations back then.
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« Reply #32 on: April 02, 2019, 11:18:31 AM »

L.A. Light Album would be a damn solid album if it weren't for 'Here Comes the Night' and 'Sumahama'.
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« Reply #33 on: April 02, 2019, 11:57:22 AM »

I'm one of the few that absolutely loves SDT on Surf's Up. I always liked hearing the BBs going down the hard-rock route.
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« Reply #34 on: May 03, 2019, 04:43:40 AM »

Great thread!

The Beach Boys Love You would be a serious contender for their best album if not for Love is a Woman. Swap it with their amazing cover of You've Lost That Lovin' Feelin' and we're good  Wink
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« Reply #35 on: May 03, 2019, 06:54:26 AM »

I don't know about albums post-Surf's Up but in my view [dons hard hat] everything up until then is fine. It all has its place, all of it. I wouldn't change a note (or a word) of anything. Grin [duck and runs]
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« Reply #36 on: May 03, 2019, 09:49:07 AM »

To me it takes a lot to sabotage an album; one song does not ruin it for me. In fact, with a lot of Beach Boys albums, for me, it's quite the opposite: one song prevents it from being a total disaster:

MIU Album -- "Won'tcha Come Out Tonight"
Light Album -- well, two songs: "Good Timin'" and "Baby Blue"
Carl Wilson -- "Heaven"
Gettin' In Over My Head -- "Make A Wish" (probably because I think this version is way better than the Sweet Insanity version with that awful, unnecessary "WOOOO!")
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« Reply #37 on: May 04, 2019, 02:26:56 AM »

To me it takes a lot to sabotage an album; one song does not ruin it for me. In fact, with a lot of Beach Boys albums, for me, it's quite the opposite: one song prevents it from being a total disaster:

MIU Album -- "Won'tcha Come Out Tonight"
Light Album -- well, two songs: "Good Timin'" and "Baby Blue"
Carl Wilson -- "Heaven"
Gettin' In Over My Head -- "Make A Wish" (probably because I think this version is way better than the Sweet Insanity version with that awful, unnecessary "WOOOO!")

I like that--the glass half full. Too many half-empty glasses on Beach Boys forums for my liking. Thanks, 37!ws. Smiley
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« Reply #38 on: May 06, 2019, 06:49:47 AM »

I would like to point out first, that it is actually Al Jardine singing lead on Santa Ann Winds.

Mike sings...
"And see the San Gabriel Mountain scene"
"Becoming one with the boundless sea"
"Whispering the wisdom and its purity"



Oh yes. They are both jarring on this one. I like the earlier version better.
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« Reply #39 on: May 11, 2019, 03:44:29 AM »

The remake of Surfin on SIP is the only thing keeping that album from surpassing Pet Sounds.
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« Reply #40 on: May 11, 2019, 09:17:07 AM »

Holland - Only With You

This love ballad does not fit with the overall feel or theme of the album, imo. I think including We Got Love would've made for an improvement.
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