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Smiley Smile Stuff => 1960's Beach Boys Albums => Topic started by: Charles LePage @ ComicList on December 25, 2005, 09:25:06 PM



Title: Friends
Post by: Charles LePage @ ComicList on December 25, 2005, 09:25:06 PM
Discuss, review and rate Friends, released June 1968.

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


Title: Re: Friends
Post by: dogbreath on December 26, 2005, 12:35:50 AM
Gorgeous. A modest triumph. The TM song is, well, ironically discordant, but the rest is blissful. Replace TM with "I Went To Sleep" and you have the perfect summer album to cool out by/with/to. Four and a half stars, rounded up.


Title: Re: Friends
Post by: APPLEI on December 26, 2005, 06:53:08 AM
satisfying is the word that desribes FRIENDS
i believe it was released around the time bobby kennedy was killed


Title: Re: Friends
Post by: the captain on December 26, 2005, 07:42:16 AM
Friends generates a nice, pleasant "AAaaahahhhhhhhhh..." out of me every time. Not quite perfect -- you'd have had to include some things like Time to Get Alone, I Went To Sleep and maybe finished versions of something like Lonely Days for that. But it is wonderful, relaxed and subtle, high-quality music that is so understated it would be easy to not notice it. It was the third BB disc I purchased, and it's always been a favorite.

As an amusing aside, a friend of mine is working toward his doctorate in music composition at the local university, and he 1) doesn't even like the BBs, but loves this album, and 2) uses several of these tracks in his course on pop music, showing how good writers can use 3/4 time, showing how to write outside of a standard aaba form, etc. Last year he brought me in to guest lecture on the Beach Boys! (OK, that was completely out of the topic. Sorry.)

I love Friends. I'd give it a 4.65 if we could use fractions, but I will instead have to round up.


Title: Re: Friends
Post by: Jason on December 26, 2005, 01:15:34 PM
Flawed. Insane. Brilliant. 'Nuff said.


Title: Re: Friends
Post by: I. Spaceman on December 26, 2005, 01:19:04 PM
5. Completely genius in every way.


Title: Re: Friends
Post by: Matinee Idyll on December 27, 2005, 05:10:21 AM
Like "Pet Sounds", another that everyone hails as a triumph that doesn't connect with me much at all.

Could any album with "When a Man Loves a Woman" and "Be Still" on really be 'perfect'?

The gorgeous title track kicks the sh*t out of everything else, production-wise, and there are a few truly beautiful songs "Diamond Head, Little Bird, Passing By" and many that are just two minutes of... well, nothing.  Things with no emotional weight, things that just literally do absolutely nothing (Be Here in the Mornin', Transcendental Meditation, Anna Lee) for their duration.

2 1/2.   Sounds even more detatched to me than Smiley.


Title: Re: Friends
Post by: SurferGirl7 on December 27, 2005, 12:05:37 PM
Sweet album. Very flowy. Doesn't get a lot of play from me but I like it. I find it nicely mellow. I find the TM track more funny then annoying.




3 1/2 - 4 stars  ;D


Title: Re: Friends
Post by: Jason on December 27, 2005, 12:08:41 PM
You have it on vinyl, I'm jealous!


Title: Re: Friends
Post by: I. Spaceman on December 27, 2005, 12:14:27 PM
It's pretty easy to find the Brother vinyl twofer. That's the one to grab, the quality is streets beyond the Capitol. Same for ALL the Capitol LP's, from PS on.


Title: Re: Friends
Post by: SurferGirl7 on December 27, 2005, 12:17:19 PM
Yeah that's how I got Friends with Smiley Smile. There is always ebay too  ;D


Title: Re: Friends
Post by: monkee knutz on December 27, 2005, 02:42:00 PM
Oh... Friends! I though it said Fiends?!


Title: Re: Friends
Post by: Aegir on December 29, 2005, 08:13:30 PM
My favorite Beach Boys album, and the least favorite of anyone that's been in the room/car when I've been listening to it.

The vocals are amazing, the lyrics are peaceful, and the entire album gives me a nice, soothing feeling... until Transcendental Meditation, a rocking tune that sends you back to the real world.


Title: Re: Friends
Post by: analogdemon on December 29, 2005, 08:26:51 PM
Absolutely gorgeous.  Someone once said that if there was ever an album to base a religion on, Friends would be it.  I agree wholeheartedly.  This album has so much great chillout music and the human element in so many of the songs totally seal the deal.  Two huge greasy thumbs up.  A shameless 5!


Title: Re: Friends
Post by: the captain on December 29, 2005, 08:39:08 PM
Someone once said that if there was ever an album to base a religion on, [blank] would be it. 

This would be a cool thread in the General Music Discussion section.


Title: Re: Friends
Post by: I. Spaceman on December 29, 2005, 08:40:07 PM
Do it.


Title: Re: Friends
Post by: the captain on December 29, 2005, 08:41:03 PM
You.


Title: Re: Friends
Post by: I. Spaceman on December 29, 2005, 08:43:13 PM
OK.


Title: Re: Friends
Post by: Chris D. on January 05, 2006, 09:56:33 AM
Like "Pet Sounds", another that everyone hails as a triumph that doesn't connect with me much at all.

Could any album with "When a Man Loves a Woman" and "Be Still" on really be 'perfect'?

f*** yeah.  If I could, I'd hump it.


Title: Re: Friends
Post by: Susan on January 05, 2006, 11:00:44 AM
Like "Pet Sounds", another that everyone hails as a triumph that doesn't connect with me much at all.

Could any album with "When a Man Loves a Woman" and "Be Still" on really be 'perfect'?

foda yeah.  If I could, I'd hump it.

Me, too.  LOVE this album....it's got a gentle vibe that isn't duplicated anywhere else in the BB ouvre. 


Title: Re: Friends
Post by: RONDEMON on January 09, 2006, 09:34:23 PM
Friends is a favorite of mine, but add on Time to Get Alone, Were Together Again, and I Went to Sleep and it's a 5 star album.  Considering those would have perfectly fit in with the other slow waltzs and they were written and probably recorded the same time as the other tracks. 


Title: Re: Friends
Post by: Reverend Joshua Sloane on January 10, 2006, 08:50:09 AM
Friends is a favorite of mine, but add on Time to Get Alone, Were Together Again, and I Went to Sleep and it's a 5 star album.  Considering those would have perfectly fit in with the other slow waltzs and they were written and probably recorded the same time as the other tracks. 

Lot's of people call out TM as the "off" track for Friends. When I first heard the album I thought it was a great track and had a cool drum sound.

I can't imagine the album closing with "I Went To Sleep" it'd be almost too calm and serene, I think it needs that jolt at the end with the TM song.


Title: Re: Friends
Post by: Mitchell on January 10, 2006, 08:53:02 AM
I absolutely love Transcendental Meditation. The saxes are awesome, the feel is jazzy and really unique to the Beach Boys, and Brian's singing is really cool and 'out there'.


Title: Re: Friends
Post by: NC on January 17, 2006, 11:19:03 AM
I give it a 3. Very average for me. I tend to rate the album based on the strength of the songs, and there are a lack of classics on this one as far as I see it. A lot of the songs seem to just meander along without really going anywhere. Never been a big fan of "Busy Doin' Nothing". I guess if you can get into the whole "laid back" feel it could be more enjoyable.

That being said, there are tunes on the album I really like. Mainly the title song, "Little Bird", and I LOVE Transcendental Meditation.



Title: Re: Friends
Post by: Compost on January 17, 2006, 11:38:33 AM
I'd have babies with this album if I could.

5


Title: Re: Friends
Post by: Aegir on January 17, 2006, 11:48:01 AM
When a man needs an album, they make things like you, my son...


Title: Re: Friends
Post by: Compost on January 17, 2006, 11:50:51 AM
foda yeah.  If I could, I'd hump it.
I see this is not an uncommon sentiment!


Title: Re: Friends
Post by: Daniel S. on January 17, 2006, 02:42:44 PM
4


The thing is, Till I Die is more where Brian is at. I don't believe he was ever Busy Doin' Nothing. Busy Goin' Insane would be more appropriate. Also, Can't Wait Too Long is one of the best songs the Beach Boys ever did, how the hell could they leave it off the album. Even in its unfinished state it is fucking amazing.


Title: Re: Friends
Post by: I. Spaceman on January 17, 2006, 02:58:07 PM
Can't Wait is a Wild Honey outtake.
I think Doin' Nothin IS Goin' Insane. The lyrics for that one are casually bonkers. It gives me the bossanova willies.


Title: Re: Friends
Post by: Daniel S. on January 18, 2006, 12:35:36 AM
Can't Wait is a Wild Honey outtake.


Didn't Brian do more work on the song to possibly include it on Friends?


Title: Re: Friends
Post by: analogdemon on January 18, 2006, 04:22:49 AM
A Beach Boys fan wishing that some unfinished, unreleased song had been on an album because it's foda awesome?  I've never heard of this before!  ;)


Title: Re: Friends
Post by: Chris D. on January 18, 2006, 07:39:39 AM
foda yeah.  If I could, I'd hump it.
I see this is not an uncommon sentiment!

We can double-team it.


Title: Re: Friends
Post by: Evenreven on January 18, 2006, 08:56:34 AM
Friends is perfect as is. I look forward to an amazing foursome, if Chris and Compost have room for one more in their bed.


Title: Re: Friends
Post by: Chris D. on January 19, 2006, 08:41:51 PM
You are the bed.  Let's be friends.


Title: Re: Friends
Post by: TV Forces on February 02, 2006, 08:51:57 AM
You have it on vinyl, I'm jealous!

I have the Capitol vinyl, and it's strange in that "Friends" and "Wake the World" have no band between them.  The seperation is gone. 

I usually program my Friends/2020 two-fer to play this way though:
Meant for You
Friends
Wake the World
Time to Get Alone
Be Here In The Mornin'
When a Man Needs a Woman
Anna Lee, the Healer
Little Bird
Be Still
We're Together Again
Busy Doin' Nothin'
Diamond Head
I Went to Sleep

I used to have a problem with "Anna Lee."  Then I really listened to it.  Man.. the piano.. then the bass..  then the background vocals.  What a sound!


Title: Re: Friends
Post by: NC on February 09, 2006, 10:32:21 AM
I've been listening to this album more and finding more of a connection to Pet Sounds musically speaking. The slice o' life lyrics still don't really move me much, but some of the music is very advanced. For instance, the strings on "Wake the World" are a beautiful arrangement touch. The vocals and subject matter of "Friends" also put me in the mind of PS. It just sounds like a natural progression. I think if Brian had been pared with a good lyricist at the time, another album on the level of Pet Sounds could have resulted.

(I realize many people think it's perfect as it is.)
 


Title: Re: Friends
Post by: Reverend Joshua Sloane on February 09, 2006, 03:16:39 PM
If Brian had called Tony Asher back to write words to the music we know on Friends, would they have been much better?

The words are excellent as far as i'm concerned.

I agree with you in thinking that Friends was another step in the natural progression of their music. At times I find it to be more advanced than Pet Sounds.


Title: Re: Friends
Post by: the captain on February 09, 2006, 07:59:14 PM
Aside from Smile, Friends may be my favorite lyrics put to Brian & Co.'s music.


Title: Re: Friends
Post by: Aegir on February 10, 2006, 02:25:00 AM
The lyrics are a good chunk of why I enjoy Friends.. they fit the music so well; some may be cheesey or weird, but hell, the Beach Boys are cheesey and weird. And that's why I like them.

Though the tuba on Wake the World is much better than the lyrics.


Title: Re: Friends
Post by: theeponymuseudonym on February 12, 2006, 06:22:21 PM
1993, waiting on the boxset!!!

i got the 2 fer one ummer day in las vegas,nv.
the ongs were more straight ahead and natural than smiley.
i really dug into the piano, bass interplay on friends. Old Man River filled every
 neuro fiber of my being for a good year. brilliant pastoral scene.


Title: Re: Friends
Post by: Reverend Joshua Sloane on February 12, 2006, 07:08:41 PM
Old Man River filled every
 neuro fiber of my being for a good year. brilliant pastoral scene.

I love this recording too.

Friends has to battle Smiley Smile everyday for my favorite album spot.

Dennis' voice on Be Here In The Mornin' is just incredible.


Title: Re: Friends
Post by: Reverend Joshua Sloane on February 12, 2006, 07:27:45 PM
Purveyors of outrageously gorgeous psychedelia and back again. This set proves that the greatest American rock band was also the most experimental.


Title: Re: Friends
Post by: Reverend Joshua Sloane on February 13, 2006, 07:45:52 PM
C, Dm7, Cmaj7, Dm7



Title: Re: Friends
Post by: Jason Penick on February 14, 2006, 02:39:35 PM
easygoing.  mellow.  perfect.  trancendental.  these are all words i use to describe Friends.

I'd award it 80 stars if I could.


Title: Re: Friends
Post by: theeponymuseudonym on February 14, 2006, 05:53:49 PM
didn't Dennis first tell the guys about the Maharishi Mahesh Yogi? anyone???


Title: Re: Friends
Post by: Reverend Joshua Sloane on February 14, 2006, 07:43:57 PM
Yep.


Title: Re: Friends
Post by: theeponymuseudonym on February 14, 2006, 08:25:11 PM
so perhaps denny is the reason for Gods wrath on the boys,huh? not mr. love.


Title: Re: Friends
Post by: Matinee Idyll on February 14, 2006, 08:41:03 PM
so perhaps denny is the reason for Gods wrath on the boys,huh? not mr. love.

...Jesus.


Title: Re: Friends
Post by: I. Spaceman on February 14, 2006, 10:12:58 PM
so perhaps denny is the reason for Gods wrath on the boys,huh? not mr. love.

...Jesus.

Exactly. I say all people worth a damn here move to SS or protest the influx to LePage.


Title: Re: Friends
Post by: theeponymuseudonym on February 14, 2006, 10:16:35 PM
Move to the SS??? i will never be a Nazi!!!


Title: Re: Friends
Post by: I. Spaceman on February 14, 2006, 10:17:39 PM
I said WORTH A DAMN!


Title: Re: Friends
Post by: theeponymuseudonym on February 14, 2006, 10:20:32 PM
uhh, you givin me a compliment my friend? Thanks.


Title: Re: Friends
Post by: Matinee Idyll on February 15, 2006, 03:58:37 PM
Sorry pony, just alittle disgusted that you could contend that Carl and Denny were 'hit' by a higher power because they got into meditation...


Title: Re: Friends
Post by: theeponymuseudonym on February 15, 2006, 06:14:43 PM
Plesae let me wander...nah, just from my Bble kjv1611 teaching
where thou shalt have NO gods but me..meaning Christ.

thats considering the boys were blessed up til PS when, even though they said they prayed to Jesus for blessings upon the sessions, one can spiritually discern that Brian, in The most supreme effort to compete & be humanly catch the musically perfect...unknowingly suffered the fall of Lucifer, himself, by which, not considering ALL the hits and acolaydes of previous years...brian strove to Be higher, make music w/ MORE musical Merit...and if everything before then was just soley for the record companies.
Brian pored his heart & soul into all he did...just his jealousy and/or envy of THE BEATLES threw him for a loop,
 i think, thus Brian's ambition to ditch the almighty Ego!!!
to somewhat of his detrement. whatever the prayer was...dear Jesus, God let us make an album which will kill the beatles forever!!! huh?

the bible says let every man take heed, lest he fall!

Dennis and Mike, always the hedonists of the band helped further by accepting and partaking of both the Maharishi And Manson, polytheistic, paganism, orgies, mediums,witchcrafts, astrologies........all from '67 on
let it be written here that Brian admitted to seeking advice from Genevylen, a "psychic" medium therearound to tell him when a good time for releasing their "H&V" single...its in the Todd gold book, and i think the Gains book.

i'll say no more now thank you for the indulgence feel free to crucify me, now.


Title: Re: Friends
Post by: I. Spaceman on February 15, 2006, 06:16:51 PM
And this has what to do with Friends?


Title: Re: Friends
Post by: theeponymuseudonym on February 15, 2006, 06:50:16 PM
Friends is the first BB product exuding the current new hippie philosophies in blatant song form....Anna Lee,Wake te World, Transcendental Med..... i digress...however, upon closer analysis, there is a spooky "angel of light" aura that permeates thru the beach boys total image as opposed to their private experiences which seeped thru into their tunes....Astrology, pedophillia, light S&M & mind control....their image completely masked their true lives...i think this is what the flesh loves to do. its also what draws us to loving them as individuals also.

how about Brian seduced by the female sex goddess using his main senses of sight, smell and taste in
 "good vibrations"  aren't all men taken by the prospect of the unblemished innocent come-on
in a naieve young girl?
Seduction is how the lucifer serpent beguiled Eve in the garden of Eden.

Men, tell me how women can have any other pull on the whole history of Man, in general????

Seduction and eroticism are basic foundations that our flesh responds to whenever all women want something bad enough from Men...admit it...whats the true allure of modern day Valentine's? to pamper women and they use lust of their men to get treats!! we're all the same but there became a difference when The Fall of Man happened...God specifically made changes forever within the woman & the Man that we all still debating and denying they exist today...even though most of these same traits of seduction, lust, desire, etc.
all are understood by secular psychiatrists and teachers in universities!!!

the book of Genesis can be believed by faith and reasonable sense, because if we only consider the reasons why we treat each other like we do...it was all an effect from what happened long ago concerning God's permissive/providential will and judgement towards Lucifer Eve Adam, then Cain and Lot....

whew, i'm hungry now...


Title: Re: Friends
Post by: Chris D. on February 15, 2006, 07:03:27 PM
Friends is the first BB product exuding the current new hippie philosophies in blatant song form

Doesn't Smiley Smile do that?  Not to mention Smile?  Or "Country Air" on Wild Honey?

Quote
how about Brian seduced by the female sex goddess using his main senses of sight, smell and taste in "good vibrations"  aren't all men taken by the prospect of the unblemished innocent come-on in a naieve young girl?  Seduction is how the lucifer serpent beguiled Eve in the garden of Eden.

Men, tell me how women can have any other pull on the whole history of Man, in general????

Uh...nature?  Reproduction and attraction are natural.  Women are not some evil force out to subvert men.  Think about which sex has f***ed more with the other throughout history.  Also, how can you be naive and know how to seduce an entire sex?

Quote
Seduction and eroticism are basic foundations that our flesh responds to whenever all women want something bad enough from Men...admit it...whats the true allure of modern day Valentine's? to pamper women and they use lust of their men to get treats!!

And aren't the men giving treats to get laid?  Have you ever interacted with a woman?

Quote
we're all the same but there became a difference when The Fall of Man happened...God specifically made changes forever within the woman & the Man that we all still debating and denying they exist today...even though most of these same traits of seduction, lust, desire, etc.
all are understood by secular psychiatrists and teachers in universities!!!

What "psychiatrists" and "universities" are teaching that?  How old are you?

Thanks matt and mike.   TTYL!


Title: Re: Friends
Post by: theeponymuseudonym on February 15, 2006, 07:28:35 PM
Freudian Psych, Jung, and the rest....

Ask any modern sexologist about the repressed nature of the average American man & woman and
chances are they'll tell u to go back to the womb, figuratively speaking, of course.

The beach Men and dennis too were all repressed sexually ,which figures into some of their seemingly homoerotic or overtly lustful overtones. over and undercompensating.

I get a gay feel out of the landy years am i the only one???
   


Title: Re: Friends
Post by: Chris D. on February 15, 2006, 07:33:55 PM
Quote
Ask any modern sexologist about the repressed nature of the average American man & woman and chances are they'll tell u to go back to the womb, figuratively speaking, of course.

And what does that have to do with Genesis, specifically?

Freud may have talked about that stuff, but Jung wasn't that interested in it.

Quote
The beach Men and dennis too were all repressed sexually

So is everyone.

Keep chuggin', prof.


Title: Re: Friends
Post by: theeponymuseudonym on February 15, 2006, 07:38:43 PM
Genesis Is Everyone, GOD's point exactly!!!

any one else wanna touch the "close" Landy years theory??


Title: Re: Friends
Post by: Chris D. on February 15, 2006, 07:57:05 PM
Genesis Is Everyone, GOD's point exactly!!!

Sure.  I think that's all I can agree with.


Title: Re: Friends
Post by: theeponymuseudonym on February 15, 2006, 08:00:20 PM
theres really nothing new under the sun


Title: Re: Friends
Post by: Chris D. on February 15, 2006, 08:07:52 PM
theres really nothing new under the sun

Your posts have certainly convinced me of that.


Title: Re: Friends
Post by: I. Spaceman on February 16, 2006, 01:34:16 AM
Chris, that post was gold.


Title: Re: Friends
Post by: Lorenschwartz on March 13, 2006, 12:18:41 AM
I'm so sorry. I post nonsense because I have no life. I understand that I am not allowed to create anymore accounts just to post nonsense. I also understand that this post edit serves as a warning, and that next time my account will be suspended for two days! :)

And yes,  I am theeponymuseudonym


Title: Re: Friends
Post by: Daniel S. on March 14, 2006, 06:24:43 PM
?


 :banana



Title: Re: Friends
Post by: Lorenschwartz on March 15, 2006, 09:02:05 AM
 :ohaha yes i am theeponymouspseudonym!!!!

i do however have a few posts i'df like to have replied to before i leave this humble forum
for fear of challenging anyones peconceived notions on Life, Love, or Beach boys.
Yes, I am between jobs right now...i happen to be in a very competitive town, where its not too kind to newcomers who are disabled. Alot of Beach Boys fans Are the disabled. Brian Wilson is Disabled.

i am intelligent though, and i find message boards to be an extention of the controlled Anarchy which is the World wide Web. i do not tink its right to censure anyones post, unless clear and present threats have been made, of course, i see all edits to posts by moderators towards myself, have been solely for what i've written., has been hard to digest.
Heroes & Villians replyed to my post once and basically said it was irreverent, off topic, but a breath of fresh air...i repect that.  and i didn't go out & geek up on it, i just kept on. we need to be more tolerant of all posters, not just ones whos opinions we like, or whos egos we want to stroke. orwho stays on topic the most...

Yeah, maybe the religious posts were a bit much, but its whati honestly believe, i'm not forcing others to accept that, just allow me the forum, like everyone else. yes, i wil try to stay on topic--who else should try that also?
i like this site, but if i breeched some command on the terms & conditions of the site, then Adios, its been real.

Who is Lorenschwartz anyway...my trivia question for the day. Who is theeponymouspseudonym? haha

I AM THE EGGHEAD


Title: Re: Friends
Post by: Bubba Ho-Tep on March 15, 2006, 09:04:10 AM
Religion, eh?

I'm still looking for the "Brian Wilson Code". It's there, somewhere, and when I find it, I'll move the gate and dry through on the left side, come right in and find God himself in the house somewhere, keeping busy while he waits....



Title: Re: Friends
Post by: Jason Penick on April 16, 2006, 11:58:32 AM
Popular Misconception of  Friends:  Insignificant collection of pleasant but overly-simplistic, underproduced throwaways.   

The Truth:  Maybe the best of the post- Pet Sounds Beach Boys albums.  Perhaps the best ever?  Twelve songs.  Under twenty-six minutes.  Indescribably great.

Okay, so if your not already a fan, you've never heard of this record.  There's no reason you should have.  Nobody ever mentions  Friends when talking about the great albums of the 1960's.  And it wasn't commercially successful, either-- in fact it flopped outright, peaking at #126 on the Billboard charts in 1968.   

But listen to Brian Wilson in his own words:   "(Friends) seems to fit the way I live better.  It's simple, and I can hear it anytime without having to get into a mood.  Pet Sounds carries a lot more emotion, at least for me...  Pet Sounds is by far my very best album.  Still, though, my favorite is Friends."

Friends is sunny and comforting, and the music is upbeat and optimistic.  Certainly these songs are not the pocket symphonies we've come to expect from the man behind  Pet Sounds and  SMiLE.  But in fairness, Friends didn't follow up on the lo-fi trip of Smiley Smile or Wild Honey either.  For the most part, these songs are well orchestrated, but in a far more halcyon manner than before.  The chord progressions and instrumental textures are undeniably the work of a master composer.   

Take, for example, the breezy bossa-nova influenced "Busy Doin' Nothin", or the waltz-time title track.   In their own way, these songs are every bit as innovative and rewarding as anything Brian had produced before.  And though Friends sported a democratic "Produced by the Beach Boys" credit on its jacket, this record has Brian's fingerprints all over it.  In truth, it's the last time he'd dominate a Beach Boys album until 1977's The Beach Boys Love You.   

The instruments utilized on the recording are as diverse as you would come to expect from Brian.  "Wake the World" features a tuba underscoring the chorus.  The instrumental "Diamond Head" utilizes ukulele and Hawaiian steel guitar, interspersed with guitar amp-derived "thunder crashes" to create a tropical ambiance similar to that of the beautiful "Let's Get Away for Awhile" from Pet Sounds.   

Other tracks, like the lovely thirty-second opener "Meant for You", Dennis Wilson's "Be Still" and the superb "Anna Lee the Healer", are backed by barely any instruments at all. But astonishingly, this lack of accompaniment only emphasizes the inherent beauty of the simple melodies and words to these hymns.  Taken together with such contemporaneous Beatles songs as "Dear Prudence" and "Mother Nature's Son", you get an idea of the kind of vibes these groups were picking up from Maharishi while first studying TM in India.   

Lyrically speaking, Friends deals equal measures of love, friendship, children, nature, tranquility and inner peace.  The words are understated and the singing is absolutely sublime.  "Be Here in the Morning" is a great example of the group's absolute mastery, featuring an emotional falsetto lead by Brian and lovely ensemble harmonies on the choruses.  When the Beach Boys' voices coincide at the end of the refrain "be here and make my life full" (or at other critical spots throughout the album... "Anna Lee, Anna Lee the hea-ler", or "let's be friends, let's be frie-ie-ie-ie-iends" or "little bird up in a tree look down and sing a song to me") a sort of blissful haze encompasses the mind, as the soul is drenched with those everlovin' Good Vibrations.

The final track on Friends,"Transcendental Meditation", deserves special mention, because it completely changes the feel of the entire album-- at its climax!  Yet while it does deliver an abrupt change, it remains a brilliant one.  This driving jazz-bop pounder is completely unlike anything else in the Wilson canon, and it remains a dense masterpiece of tonal domination... the last thing you'd ever expect from a "Beach Boys Record".

Overall, this is the perfect album to enhance a psychedelic mushrooms trip, or, alternately, to provide background ambiance as you gather together with your family of friends in your backyard on a warm July day.  The uplifting melodies flowing from this brief slab of vinyl are unbelievable!  So if you are ready to have your soul saturated with a positive dose of love vibes, why not give Friends a try?


Title: Re: Friends
Post by: Lorenschwartz on April 16, 2006, 12:18:29 PM
Popular Misconception of  Friends:  Insignificant collection of pleasant but overly-simplistic, underproduced throwaways.   

The Truth:  Maybe the best of the post- Pet Sounds Beach Boys albums.  Perhaps the best ever?  Twelve songs.  Under twenty-six minutes.  Indescribably great.

Okay, so if your not already a fan, you've never heard of this record.  There's no reason you should have.  Nobody ever mentions  Friends when talking about the great albums of the 1960's.  And it wasn't commercially successful, either-- in fact it flopped outright, peaking at #126 on the Billboard charts in 1968.   

But listen to Brian Wilson in his own words:   "(Friends) seems to fit the way I live better.  It's simple, and I can hear it anytime without having to get into a mood.  Pet Sounds carries a lot more emotion, at least for me...  Pet Sounds is by far my very best album.  Still, though, my favorite is Friends."

Friends is sunny and comforting, and the music is upbeat and optimistic.  Certainly these songs are not the pocket symphonies we've come to expect from the man behind  Pet Sounds and  SMiLE.  But in fairness, Friends didn't follow up on the lo-fi trip of Smiley Smile or Wild Honey either.  For the most part, these songs are well orchestrated, but in a far more halcyon manner than before.  The chord progressions and instrumental textures are undeniably the work of a master composer.   

Take, for example, the breezy bossa-nova influenced "Busy Doin' Nothin", or the waltz-time title track.   In their own way, these songs are every bit as innovative and rewarding as anything Brian had produced before.  And though Friends sported a democratic "Produced by the Beach Boys" credit on its jacket, this record has Brian's fingerprints all over it.  In truth, it's the last time he'd dominate a Beach Boys album until 1977's The Beach Boys Love You.   

The instruments utilized on the recording are as diverse as you would come to expect from Brian.  "Wake the World" features a tuba underscoring the chorus.  The instrumental "Diamond Head" utilizes ukulele and Hawaiian steel guitar, interspersed with guitar amp-derived "thunder crashes" to create a tropical ambiance similar to that of the beautiful "Let's Get Away for Awhile" from Pet Sounds.   

Other tracks, like the lovely thirty-second opener "Meant for You", Dennis Wilson's "Be Still" and the superb "Anna Lee the Healer", are backed by barely any instruments at all. But astonishingly, this lack of accompaniment only emphasizes the inherent beauty of the simple melodies and words to these hymns.  Taken together with such contemporaneous Beatles songs as "Dear Prudence" and "Mother Nature's Son", you get an idea of the kind of vibes these groups were picking up from Maharishi while first studying TM in India.   

Lyrically speaking, Friends deals equal measures of love, friendship, children, nature, tranquility and inner peace.  The words are understated and the singing is absolutely sublime.  "Be Here in the Morning" is a great example of the group's absolute mastery, featuring an emotional falsetto lead by Brian and lovely ensemble harmonies on the choruses.  When the Beach Boys' voices coincide at the end of the refrain "be here and make my life full" (or at other critical spots throughout the album... "Anna Lee, Anna Lee the hea-ler", or "let's be friends, let's be frie-ie-ie-ie-iends" or "little bird up in a tree look down and sing a song to me") a sort of blissful haze encompasses the mind, as the soul is drenched with those everlovin' Good Vibrations.

The final track on Friends,"Transcendental Meditation", deserves special mention, because it completely changes the feel of the entire album-- at its climax!  Yet while it does deliver an abrupt change, it remains a brilliant one.  This driving jazz-bop pounder is completely unlike anything else in the Wilson canon, and it remains a dense masterpiece of tonal domination... the last thing you'd ever expect from a "Beach Boys Record".

Overall, this is the perfect album to enhance a psychedelic mushrooms trip, or, alternately, to provide background ambiance as you gather together with your family of friends in your backyard on a warm July day.  The uplifting melodies flowing from this brief slab of vinyl are unbelievable!  So if you are ready to have your soul saturated with a positive dose of love vibes, why not give Friends a try?
yeah, i think so also. Friends i like a breath of fresh air


Title: Re: Friends
Post by: Compost on April 16, 2006, 03:56:29 PM
Jason - beautiful review.  Friends is top-notch quality and chockful of goodness.  You nailed this sucker shut.


Title: Re: Friends
Post by: Aegir on April 16, 2006, 07:50:34 PM
Oh, that's why I like Friends.


Title: Re: Friends
Post by: Mitchell on April 18, 2006, 06:56:08 AM
Nice review! The lead on Be Here in the Morning is Al, but aside from that, it's all good.


Title: Re: Friends
Post by: punkinhead on April 18, 2006, 07:32:46 AM
knowing that Murry is singing the bass line to be here in the morning makes the song all the much better


Title: Re: Friends
Post by: Jonas on April 18, 2006, 07:58:11 AM
knowing that Murry is singing the bass line to be here in the morning makes the song all the much better

really? where does it say that?

and someone needs to clear this up, that one falsetto part in 'be here in the mornin' is it brian or al? the 'haaa-ah ha'


Title: Re: Friends
Post by: Don't Back Down on April 18, 2006, 09:10:07 AM
knowing that Murry is singing the bass line to be here in the morning makes the song all the much better

really? where does it say that?

and someone needs to clear this up, that one falsetto part in 'be here in the mornin' is it brian or al? the 'haaa-ah ha'


Sounds like Brian to me


Title: Re: Friends
Post by: busy doin nothin on April 18, 2006, 09:29:05 AM
Popular Misconception of  Friends:  Insignificant collection of pleasant but overly-simplistic, underproduced throwaways.   

The Truth:  Maybe the best of the post- Pet Sounds Beach Boys albums.  Perhaps the best ever?  Twelve songs.  Under twenty-six minutes.  Indescribably great.



 For the most part, these songs are well orchestrated, but in a far more halcyon manner than before.  The chord progressions and instrumental textures are undeniably the work of a master composer.   

Take, for example, the breezy bossa-nova influenced "Busy Doin' Nothin", or the waltz-time title track.   In their own way, these songs are every bit as innovative and rewarding as anything Brian had produced before.  And though Friends sported a democratic "Produced by the Beach Boys" credit on its jacket, this record has Brian's fingerprints all over it.  In truth, it's the last time he'd dominate a Beach Boys album until 1977's The Beach Boys Love You.   

The instruments utilized on the recording are as diverse as you would come to expect from Brian.  "Wake the World" features a tuba underscoring the chorus.  The instrumental "Diamond Head" utilizes ukulele and Hawaiian steel guitar, interspersed with guitar amp-derived "thunder crashes" to create a tropical ambiance similar to that of the beautiful "Let's Get Away for Awhile" from Pet Sounds.   

Other tracks, like the lovely thirty-second opener "Meant for You", Dennis Wilson's "Be Still" and the superb "Anna Lee the Healer", are backed by barely any instruments at all. But astonishingly, this lack of accompaniment only emphasizes the inherent beauty of the simple melodies and words to these hymns.  Taken together with such contemporaneous Beatles songs as "Dear Prudence" and "Mother Nature's Son", you get an idea of the kind of vibes these groups were picking up from Maharishi while first studying TM in India.   



"Be Here in the Morning" is a great example of the group's absolute mastery, featuring an emotional falsetto lead by Brian and lovely ensemble harmonies on the choruses.  When the Beach Boys' voices coincide at the end of the refrain "be here and make my life full" (or at other critical spots throughout the album... "Anna Lee, Anna Lee the hea-ler", or "let's be friends, let's be frie-ie-ie-ie-iends" or "little bird up in a tree look down and sing a song to me") a sort of blissful haze encompasses the mind, as the soul is drenched with those everlovin' Good Vibrations.

The final track on Friends,"Transcendental Meditation", deserves special mention, because it completely changes the feel of the entire album-- at its climax!  Yet while it does deliver an abrupt change, it remains a brilliant one.  This driving jazz-bop pounder is completely unlike anything else in the Wilson canon, and it remains a dense masterpiece of tonal domination... the last thing you'd ever expect from a "Beach Boys Record".




Fantastic review, Jason.  Friends is an utterly extraordinary album, as you so eloquently describe.  I was particularly thrilled to read your praise for "Anna Lee, the Healer" and "Transcendental Meditation," two songs that get bashed quite a bit around here but that I think are really wonderful.  I think they get hated on because of their subject matter, but it's really pretty innocuously (even humorously) presented.  It's amazing that "Anna Lee" features just a piano (Brian?) and a little bass and bongo instrumentally, and "Transcendental" is such a cool jazzy song with the discordant vocal notes.

One note:  I thought it had been pretty well established that the falsetto lead on "Be Here in the Morning" ("Been such a long day so you better hurry home") is Al, though I agree that the introductory "ah-ah" is Brian.


Title: Re: Friends
Post by: Mitchell on April 18, 2006, 09:33:33 AM
knowing that Murry is singing the bass line to be here in the morning makes the song all the much better

really? where does it say that?

He sings the lowest note in the "make my life FULL" because Mike couldn't do it. Stephen Desper said so.


Title: Re: Friends
Post by: b.dfzo on April 18, 2006, 10:26:46 AM
The falsetto behind Carl on the "Be Here In The Morning" chorus has that Jardine element.  I say Al.


Title: Re: Friends
Post by: Reverend Joshua Sloane on April 18, 2006, 11:41:35 AM
I love what Brian and Dennis do on the quiet parts with this song. Strange song musically.


Title: Re: Friends
Post by: punkinhead on April 18, 2006, 04:24:58 PM
i think i read it here on the board. maybe our engineer friend mr. desper can clear this up; listen to it, it makes sense, since mike wasnt at most of the sessions, perhaps he helped out?


Title: Re: Friends
Post by: punkinhead on April 18, 2006, 04:25:58 PM
it's more on the group vocals like:
lit all my incense and i wish you were home
ahhhhhhh ahhhh oooooo
no calls from korthof, parks, or grillo


Title: Re: Friends
Post by: Aegir on April 20, 2006, 05:29:01 AM
Listening now, I can definitely hear an unfamiliar low voice in the mix.


Title: Re: Friends
Post by: Lorenschwartz on April 20, 2006, 05:55:47 AM
Listening now, I can definitely hear an unfamiliar low voice in the mix.

That unfamiliar low voice, my BB lovin' friends, is Lucifer in full drag.
He made an uncredited cameo that session...filled in for Mr. Love.

Also he's that quavering vox at 2nd chorus beginning.


P.S.-"be here..."is one of my fave's too.  right next to Passing By, meant 4u, & when a man....
           very plain spoken LP. An acid comedown record fer shure


Title: Re: Friends
Post by: Burnley Vest on May 03, 2006, 12:02:46 PM
This is one of my absolute favorites; a record only the Beach Boys could make and probably the most coherent (in terms of stylistic unity) record the Boys made in the "Produced by The Beach Boys" years. Easily a five.



Title: Re: Friends
Post by: Vega-Table Man on May 25, 2006, 12:57:25 PM
It's amazing that "Anna Lee" features just a piano (Brian?) and a little bass and bongo instrumentally...

I was just thinking about this as I listened to the song on the way home yesterday. So much is done with so little instrumentation here, as on most of the album. There's a lot of space in this music, and IMO it really works.


Title: Re: Friends
Post by: Daniel S. on August 31, 2006, 05:49:29 PM
I love this record, so much. I really do.  :rock


Title: Re: Friends
Post by: Magic Transistor Radio on October 25, 2006, 10:47:43 PM
It is amazing how their voices sound so much a like at times. Even unrelated Al gets mixed up with them.

I think the A-ah-ah intro is Brian, but singing the falsetto lead right after is Al.


Title: Re: Friends
Post by: warnakey on March 01, 2007, 07:14:01 PM
I read somewhere once something that goes like this "why would anyone like friends? well, its that feeling that it gives you, of being with your friends, being warm in the sun, and feeling relaxed, and that's hard to get."

That's what friends is all about. This is an incredibly warm, loving album. The song When A Man Needs A Woman is a perfect example. Ironically enough, Brian Wilson never had a boy, but apparently he wanted one. But it's very touching.

This entire album flows and can really give you some good memories. I recommend it completely.


Title: Re: Friends
Post by: mikeyj on March 17, 2007, 07:42:55 PM
5 from me. A great album. One that I always put on to just sit back and relax to


Title: Re: Friends
Post by: the captain on March 17, 2007, 07:55:17 PM
This album contains three or four (or five) of my absolute favorite Beach Boys songs ever. When a Man..., Be Here in the Morning and Wake the World are al criminally underappreciated in the BBs catalogue, not to mention the world of pop.

OK, maybe not criminally.


Title: Re: Friends
Post by: Mahalo on March 17, 2007, 10:25:57 PM
I dig PASSING BY myself


Title: Re: Friends
Post by: Lorenschwartz on March 23, 2007, 08:35:36 PM
is there a new mix of ol man river included on the 2000 capitol 2 fer or 20/20 friends


Title: Re: Friends
Post by: ♩♬🐸 Billy C ♯♫♩🐇 on March 24, 2007, 11:37:59 PM
I think it's the previously used mix.


Title: Re: Friends
Post by: Lorenschwartz on March 27, 2007, 10:47:49 AM
I think it's the previously used mix.
i think its a different mix from the 1990 2fer....


Title: Re: Friends
Post by: thomasogg on June 25, 2007, 04:57:49 PM
4 out of 5. I adore this freakin' album! 'Be Here In  The Mornin' my personal favourite track - experimental, eccentric, ridiculously melodic, the BBs at their best! Dennis' songs are a revelation, and the title track is gorgeous! Only the TM song spoils it and stops me giving it the full 5.


Title: Re: Friends
Post by: Daniel S. on July 04, 2007, 10:13:21 PM
I was they had included 'Can't Wait Too Long' on the album instead of TM Song.


Title: Re: Friends
Post by: Jonas on July 09, 2007, 10:48:39 AM
You guys are nuts! Transcendental Meditation is a GREAT song. Sure, it doesn't fit in with the rest of the album, but after a few listens it really swings man. The horns sound great and the vocals are just so much fun. I always find myself blasting this in the car stereo and singing along.


Title: Re: Friends
Post by: Compost on July 09, 2007, 12:03:13 PM
Agreed!  'Transcendental Meditation' is one of the highlights on this album for me.  It's hilarious and utterly unique in their canon.


Title: Re: Friends
Post by: phirnis on July 09, 2007, 12:15:58 PM
I know what fans mean when they claim TM doesn't fit the rest of the album. Yet to me, that song makes perfect sense as a closer to Friends, just as anything on Friends makes perfect sense to me.
I Went To Sleep sounds great on 20/20.


Title: Re: Friends
Post by: ShenzhenLost on July 09, 2007, 12:21:15 PM
the version of 'ol man river' on the 2001 release is different from the 1990 release of the twofer.  it's pretty obvious actually.  i prefer the 1990 version, to be honest.  i like the modulation back down to the original key as opposed to the bass-piano-guitar abrupt stop...  still, i like them both actually!



Title: Re: Friends
Post by: Shady on December 14, 2007, 10:24:36 AM
Friends, just got it today 5 Stars


Title: Re: Friends
Post by: Lorenschwartz on January 04, 2008, 02:21:07 PM
the version of 'ol man river' on the 2001 release is different from the 1990 release of the twofer.  it's pretty obvious actually.  i prefer the 1990 version, to be honest.  i like the modulation back down to the original key as opposed to the bass-piano-guitar abrupt stop...  still, i like them both actually!


tank you vedy much...i know i'm not kwazy now!!!!


Title: Re: Friends
Post by: lance on May 01, 2008, 09:33:56 PM
One of their coolest albums, reminds me of a summer morning before it gets too hot. Transcendental Meditation is hilarious.


Title: Re: Friends
Post by: Wrightfan on May 16, 2008, 05:36:59 PM
4. Very overlooked album. I think I might like 20/20 better but this is still a gorgeous piece of work:

Best to worst:
Busy Doin' Nothin'
Little Bird
Wake the World
Friends
Diamond Head
Meant for You
Anna Lee, the Healer
Be Here in the Mornin'
Passing By
When a Man Needs a Woman
Be Still
Transcendental Meditation


Title: Re: Friends
Post by: Luke_Barshack on May 26, 2008, 08:57:19 AM

Best to worst:
Busy Doin' Nothin'
Little Bird
Wake the World
Friends
Diamond Head
Meant for You
Anna Lee, the Healer
Be Here in the Mornin'
Passing By
When a Man Needs a Woman
Be Still
Transcendental Meditation

I guess I agree with this.  I'd place 'Friends' a little higher perhaps - the 'Let's be friends' plea is just irresistible.  It's real tough to pick favourites but I do think that 'Be Still' and 'TM' are considerably weaker than the rest of the record. 

'Little Bird', by the way - is a revelation, people must've scratched their heads wondering where that one came from.  Unfortunately, I think that Be Still lets Dennis down.

In the liner notes to the twofer, Brian speaks of his writing process for the album.  At the time, this was interesting to me, as I had assumed (as so many have) that he just spent the latter part of the 60's as a recluse.  The find that this was another thoughtfully constructed and cohesive Brian-dominated album was, for me at the time, rather surprising.


Title: Re: Friends
Post by: Poprocks on June 25, 2008, 10:48:24 PM
I really like this one.  It's not perfect, but IMO it's *as good* as Wild Honey in its own little way.  The mix seems a lot better, that's for sure, and it flows really well.  A couple of duds bring this one down for me.  When a Man Needs a Woman had the potential to be a *great* song, but I find that what starts off as a great musical idea falls flat fast - I can't quite explain it but it feels unfinished.  Be Still sounds almost like it could have been a SS outtake.  It's not a bad song, but it's weak.  But Denny gives a good sneak preview for Sunflower with Little Bird.  Wonderful song.  Busy Doin' Nothin' improves on the theme/style of I'd Love Just Once To See You from WH (which was, incidentally, my favourite track on WH!) and is a true gem.  Diamond Head is amazing.   And TM, I don't hate that one as much as some people - in fact, I actually really like it.

4 stars.

Track picks:  Busy Doin' Nothin' (+++), Friends (+++), Diamond Head (+++), Little Bird (++), Wake The World (++), Anna Lee The Healer (+), TM (+)


Title: Re: Friends
Post by: The Heartical Don on September 02, 2008, 06:39:00 AM
Gorgeous little stereo LP. 'Passing By' and 'Diamond Head' are superb. It took me months to 'get' the rhythm shift in 'DH', to the waltzy ukulele sound.


Title: Re: Friends
Post by: sockittome on September 12, 2008, 06:06:22 PM
After reading this whole thread last night, I decided to put on the headphones and listen to the FRIENDS portion of my cd 2fer.  I hadn't done that in many years, and I was interested in seeing what I might think now that I am forty-something. 

My overall assessment is:  great instrumentation, production, and group vocals and harmonies, but really lame lyrics.  Brian should have collaborated with a lyricist on this one.  I would have liked to have heard about something more exciting then the group's masseuse, or Brian impersonating a housewife, or talking bird 'n' bees with the son he never had.  I know there are a number of people who like that simplistic quality in these songs, but I for one, find that minimalist approach a bit boring.  "Passing By" and "Diamond Head' give the listener a hint of what an instrumental FRIENDS album would sound like.  Now that is something I could put on in the background and go about my daily routines. 

On a positive note, I absolutely love the song "Friends".  The mix is just a bit odd, with the drums and bass almost drowning out the vocals, but what a great drum and bass sound!  And the vocals are just amazing!  Those ascending chords trip me out every time I hear them.  This song is so 1968.  And, I guess to be fair, so is the entire album.  It does hold up well next to other 1968 albums.  The Beatles' white album, Spanky and Our Gang--"Like to Get to Know You", etc.


Title: Re: Friends
Post by: Poprocks on September 15, 2008, 09:35:04 PM
I generally agree with you about the lyrics, sockittome - at least with the lyrics Mike wrote.  I think Brian showed he's actually a pretty capable lyric writer when he does it right - Busy Doin' Nothin' has a fine lyric, for example.  But Ana Lee The Healer, while I like the song a lot and think the harmonies are exquisite, the lyrics are awful - the "goes a gal who got her fame by goin' round and healin' folks" line makes me cringe every time.

But in terms of a the sound, I think it sounds a lot better than WH quality and mix-wise and don't have a major problem with the production overall.


Title: Re: Friends
Post by: Thunderfingers75 on September 26, 2008, 01:55:53 PM
It's a nice snapshot of the late 60's. I guess I cant really say that since I wasnt born till 75 but its a nice snapshot of what I imagine the late 60's were like. One of my favorite records of all time. My wife and I love to put this album on while making dinner. :hat


Title: Re: Friends
Post by: the captain on September 26, 2008, 07:49:54 PM
t really lame lyrics.  Brian should have collaborated with a lyricist on this one. 
He was collaborating. Mike Love, Carl Wilson, Dennis Wilson, Al Jardine...


Title: Re: Friends
Post by: lance on September 26, 2008, 10:02:22 PM
It's funny how people disagree about things. I think the lyrics to Friends are great and add to the album's beauty, not take away from it; they were something different from the high-falutin' wordplay of Smile and the classic love-song  lyrics of Wild Honey.


Title: Re: Friends
Post by: the captain on September 27, 2008, 07:31:21 AM
For what it's worth, I love a lot of them, too. Be Here in the Morning, Wake the World, When a Man Needs a Woman and a couple of the others are among my favorite Beach Boys songs ever, no question about it. Music, performance, production, lyrics, the whole thing. (I'm not so keen on Friends, Anna Lee or Transcendental Meditation)


Title: Re: Friends
Post by: Alex on September 27, 2008, 01:04:13 PM
"Diamond Head" is by far my favorite track on the album. I like just about the whole thing except for "Trancendental Meditation".


Title: Re: Friends
Post by: JB Wilojarston on September 27, 2008, 03:13:52 PM
"I like just about the whole thing except for "Trancendental Meditation".

I like this song for its blatant, blaring dissonance in the horn parts; very jazzy (and progressive at that). Sounds like Charles Lloyd solos on it. If it's him, I wonder if it's his first appearance on a Beach Boys record?


Title: Re: Friends
Post by: the captain on September 27, 2008, 03:22:32 PM
There is nothing progressive (if taken in a jazz context) about Transcendental Meditation.


Title: Re: Friends
Post by: ♩♬🐸 Billy C ♯♫♩🐇 on September 27, 2008, 03:30:59 PM
Hell, I like the whole album, including Transcendental Mediation.


Title: Re: Friends
Post by: JB Wilojarston on September 27, 2008, 04:07:03 PM
There is nothing progressive (if taken in a jazz context) about Transcendental Meditation.

You're right, it's not Charles Mingus or Don Ellis...I was thinking of the type of horn charts that some of some of the British bands (Colliseum, Manfred Mann Chapter 3, etc.) used a little later; more of a jazz/rock kind of progressive. Still, it's kind of a jarring end to the side of the record; the album is so mellow. But,  I still like it.


Title: Re: Friends
Post by: lance on September 28, 2008, 04:23:43 AM
I love Transcendal Meditation. I have always thought it was a joke, a good example of Brian Wilson's puck-like contrariness. It mocks transcendental meditation itself, the lyric and its writers, the listener and the album's tranquil, slightly drugged out blissful mood itself.  The music is so willfully wrong, for the lyrics, for the album.
It's a dark, angry little joke, but a good one.

 As such, it's the musical equivalent of Bull Sessions with Big Daddy, but much better done.


Title: Re: Friends
Post by: sockittome on September 29, 2008, 05:33:31 PM
t really lame lyrics.  Brian should have collaborated with a lyricist on this one. 
He was collaborating. Mike Love, Carl Wilson, Dennis Wilson, Al Jardine...

You are absolutely correct, sir.   I've always been under the impression that the other guys' writing contributions were minimal on FRIENDS (then again, I'm probably way off on that).  I guess what I meant to say was perhaps Brian should have collaborated with a lyricist outside the group.  But then maybe that wouldn't have gone over so well after the VDP situation the previous year.

Oh, well, it is what it is.  Let's all enjoy it.


Title: Re: Friends
Post by: carl r on October 01, 2008, 11:50:16 AM
about friends the song... it's an example of how many directions Brian's music can sometimes go. Deceptively simple.  I've got the piano score and as I play quite badly I make a lot of mistakes. But when I make a mistake, in timing or simply hitting the wrong note, it's possible to hear a number of different possible conurbations of this song. It's like Brian's music contains a core element and once it's somehow absorbed and improvised, the structure can be the base of other entirely different but somehow similar tunes. It doesn't work for the other music I try to play. Maybe it's just me. I'm just sure its something really special though.


Title: Re: Friends
Post by: sockittome on October 02, 2008, 04:50:51 PM
The song FRIENDS is yet another of Brian's tunes that defies catagorization; you simply can't compare it to any other song.  Think about it...'66--GOOD VIBRATIONS, '67--HEROES & VILLAINS, '68--FRIENDS...Not a bad streak in creativity!  They should've all been #1s!


Title: Re: Friends
Post by: carl r on October 06, 2008, 12:18:44 AM
Whilst it hasn't entered popular consciousness as much as you-know-what, Friends has got quite a few Friends.

http://www.ew.com/ew/article/0,,1111158,00.html (http://www.ew.com/ew/article/0,,1111158,00.html)


Title: Re: Friends
Post by: JB Wilojarston on October 06, 2008, 12:43:35 PM
I'm convinced that Dennis wrote the section/tag just after the line, "life has to give." He uses ascending parallel major chord progessions in several of his songs (the fade of Got To Know The Woman is an example).  To me, that's the part that makes it psychedelic.


Title: Re: Friends
Post by: Bedroom Tapes on November 22, 2008, 06:07:42 PM
I think this album contains the best BB group vocals of the 60's.  It's very cohesive, flows nicely, and I enjoy every track on the album.


Title: Re: Friends
Post by: carl r on November 30, 2008, 10:41:07 PM
I'm sure someone will tell me if I'm talking rubbish, but I think Friends is Smile II.

Why?

Musical experimentation. No following albums had the kind of instrumental backing of, say, Busy Doin' Nothing, Diamond Head or the Euro-pop of Passing By.

A flow to the album, although with abrupt and deliberate spikes. Brian still hanging out with his hippy friends, jamming and trying to find the new sounds. No formal collaboration with the hightened expectations, but low-key external songwriting inputs are feeding in here and there.

Another difference is that there is more group collaboration with the lyrics, and Dennis adding his new songs.

I reckon it was a slow slide from this point, but what a pinnacle of achievement this is.


Title: Re: Friends
Post by: phirnis on November 30, 2008, 11:10:21 PM
I'm sure someone will tell me if I'm talking rubbish, but I think Friends is Smile II.
...

No rubbish at all. Listen to the title track, it's sort of an easygoing campfire version of the Smile aesthetic.


Title: Re: Friends
Post by: Wrightfan on December 01, 2008, 05:48:38 PM
I'm sure someone will tell me if I'm talking rubbish, but I think Friends is Smile II.
...

No rubbish at all. Listen to the title track, it's sort of an easygoing campfire version of the Smile aesthetic.

There's is a lot of SMiLE influence in my opinion:
Wake the World reminds me of Carl's production from the SMiLE era "Tones" (especially in the "Wake the world for a

But the one that really gets me is Little Bird. Listen to the part that goes "Little Bird up in a tree..." The drums, bass, and trumpets are EXACLTY like the "Child is Father of the Man" chorus. It's not even a homage, it's about 100% accurate.


Title: Re: Friends
Post by: Charles LePage @ ComicList on December 01, 2008, 07:44:11 PM
But the one that really gets me is Little Bird. Listen to the part that goes "Little Bird up in a tree..." The drums, bass, and trumpets are EXACLTY like the "Child is Father of the Man" chorus. It's not even a homage, it's about 100% accurate.

Agreed:

http://thesmileshop.net/index.php/Child_Is_Father_Of_The_Man


Title: Re: Friends
Post by: Wrightfan on December 02, 2008, 04:44:25 PM
But the one that really gets me is Little Bird. Listen to the part that goes "Little Bird up in a tree..." The drums, bass, and trumpets are EXACLTY like the "Child is Father of the Man" chorus. It's not even a homage, it's about 100% accurate.

Agreed:

http://thesmileshop.net/index.php/Child_Is_Father_Of_The_Man


Cool, though now I'm intrigued about that 1971 session. What's that about?


Title: Re: Friends
Post by: Alex on December 02, 2008, 06:15:14 PM
But the one that really gets me is Little Bird. Listen to the part that goes "Little Bird up in a tree..." The drums, bass, and trumpets are EXACLTY like the "Child is Father of the Man" chorus. It's not even a homage, it's about 100% accurate.

Agreed:

http://thesmileshop.net/index.php/Child_Is_Father_Of_The_Man




Cool, though now I'm intrigued about that 1971 session. What's that about?

Was that session the tag to Surf's Up?


Title: Re: Friends
Post by: CarlsDarlin on January 21, 2009, 05:55:40 PM
4.  I love Wake the World, Be Still, Be Here In The morning, and Little Bird.


Title: Re: Friends
Post by: TimeToGetAlone on September 15, 2009, 07:05:07 PM
It has come to my attention that I never rated this album, which is strange because I could have sworn I had.  Anyways, this is a very nice and tranquil album with a fairly consistent tone to it.  The title track is just great and although some feel underdeveloped, others sound just right in the low-key production.  This is the last album I feel Brian controlled before withdrawing a little.  That's not to say he wasn't still an important contributor, but I'm sure most of you are familiar with what I mean.

Meant For You - 4.5/5
Friends - 5/5
Wake the World - 4.5/5
Be Here in the Mornin' - 4.5/5
When A Man Needs a Woman - 3.5/5
Passing By - 4/5
Anna Lee, the Healer - 4/5
Little Bird - 5/5
Be Still - 3/5
Busy Doin' Nothin' - 4.5/5
Diamond Head - 3/5
Transcendental Meditation - 4/5

An easy four.


Title: Re: Friends
Post by: sleeptalk on October 03, 2009, 12:14:48 AM
"meant for you" is one of the sweetest little songs of all time, warms the heart from the second the vocal comes in. starting the album with that one was a genius move...closing with "transcendental meditation," on the other hand, is the record's only real fault in my opinion. shouldn't have been on the record at all.

still, i can forgive it. 4.5 rounded up...


Title: Re: Friends
Post by: hypehat on October 03, 2009, 09:12:19 AM
If they had closed this record with 'A Time To Live In Dreams', wouldn't it have been just perfect?


Title: Re: Friends
Post by: nobody on October 03, 2009, 04:55:14 PM
If they had closed this record with 'A Time To Live In Dreams', wouldn't it have been just perfect?

the version i've heard has a much different sound to the rest of the album, which is pretty dry

"little bird" is really something special.


Title: Re: Friends
Post by: sleeptalk on October 03, 2009, 11:47:55 PM
If they had closed this record with 'A Time To Live In Dreams', wouldn't it have been just perfect?

yes! i feel that.


Title: Re: Friends
Post by: Aegir on October 04, 2009, 08:13:03 PM
If I were the type to say "My ideal version of X album would have these tracks on it" (which I'm not), I would replace Be Still with A Time to Live in Dreams.


Title: Re: Friends
Post by: sleeptalk on October 04, 2009, 08:29:21 PM
If I were the type to say "My ideal version of X album would have these tracks on it" (which I'm not), I would replace Be Still with A Time to Live in Dreams.

too cool?


Title: Re: Friends
Post by: Aegir on October 04, 2009, 09:03:32 PM
I just feel like it screws with the artistic intent. An album is a specific collection of songs that's meant to be listened to in a certain way. To use an extreme examply, if everyone had access to the multitracks and were musically competent, they would probably remix all the songs on every album by every band to their liking. You're not really a fan of the band, then, you're a fan of yourself.

Besides the music itself, another element of a band is how they present it.

I'm not too cool, I'm too weird.


Title: Re: Friends
Post by: the captain on October 05, 2009, 10:15:27 AM
I just feel like it screws with the artistic intent. An album is a specific collection of songs that's meant to be listened to in a certain way. To use an extreme examply, if everyone had access to the multitracks and were musically competent, they would probably remix all the songs on every album by every band to their liking. You're not really a fan of the band, then, you're a fan of yourself.

Besides the music itself, another element of a band is how they present it.

I'm not too cool, I'm too weird.

I mostly agree with you here, Aegir. But I think listeners probably overdo the idea of an album being a specific set of songs presented in a specific way sometimes, too. It seems to me that people want their favorite bands/musicians to have had some grand master plan or insight (see: Smile) when in reality a lot of the time an album is a collection of the songs that are done and ready to be released. Not that it's just a random dumping of material, either. But labels probably have more input into song choice and sequencing on many albums than artists do.


Title: Re: Friends
Post by: Aegir on October 05, 2009, 10:45:08 AM
Well, I don't know, I think the thing with sequencing is that if you listen to an album enough, you expect one song to flow into another. When one song ends, I hear the intro to the next song on the album in my mind. The twofers ruined this somewhat. After the "POOF" at the end of "Mama Says", you're supposed to hear the click of the record ending. Instead the Cantina version of "Heroes and Villains" starts up.


Title: Re: Friends
Post by: the captain on October 05, 2009, 11:57:07 AM
Well, I don't know, I think the thing with sequencing is that if you listen to an album enough, you expect one song to flow into another. When one song ends, I hear the intro to the next song on the album in my mind.

Sure, but this is based in large part on what your mind knows is the "correct" sequence--which may or may not have much to do with some grand artistic plan on the musicians' part. There are plenty of Beach Boys songs that I have entirely re-sequenced in my head because my head has been trained to hear them in the context of mix discs I have done. Same phenomenon.

But your initial point is one I agree with: re-sequencing is playing god. I just don't believe the artists necessarily were the gods as often as assumed on the originals.


Title: Re: Friends
Post by: sleeptalk on October 05, 2009, 06:21:10 PM
But your initial point is one I agree with: re-sequencing is playing god. I just don't believe the artists necessarily were the gods as often as assumed on the originals.

both points are completely irrelevant when an album isn't so carefully put together (a la Pet Sounds or SMiLE) and/or it simply could have been better. this is true of pretty much any BB album less the paranthetically referenced.


Title: Re: Friends
Post by: the captain on October 05, 2009, 08:37:44 PM
Faulty logic. My point IS irrelevant, in that it was really a tangent off Aegir's point. But his point is absolutely not irrelevant, because you're going off the assumption that any album whose sequencing you don't agree with is not carefully put together, or could have been better put together. You don't think someone--whether it's the Beach Boys or not (which gets at my point) took care in putting them together? Or, more to the point (as opposed to irrelevant to it), you think you could do that objectively "better"?

Your careless or flawed sequencing is someone else's PERFECT sequencing. I know someone who would argue to the death FOR Transcendental Meditation as the finale of that album, and his BBs views are nothing if not well thought out and insightful. In short, you're not disproving Aegir's "playing god" point at all. Far from irrelevant, it is proven by you.

To put it another way, mind your manners. Disagree with some courtesy.


Title: Re: Friends
Post by: sleeptalk on October 05, 2009, 10:12:48 PM
Your careless or flawed sequencing is someone else's PERFECT sequencing. I know someone who would argue to the death FOR Transcendental Meditation as the finale of that album, and his BBs views are nothing if not well thought out and insightful. In short, you're not disproving Aegir's "playing god" point at all. Far from irrelevant, it is proven by you.

lol, no. it's not "playing god," it's a harmless "what if." and yes, of course, we all have different ideal "what if" scenarios. that's the kind of thing that makes a message board fun.  :P

you also misunderstand the meaning of "irrelevant" in the context i used it: my point was, unless there really is a "godly" mind and intent behind a tracklisting (like, say, Pet Sounds or Smile), then resequencing and reimagining a record in a way is far from sacrilegious. are we to reserve the same reverence for KTSA that we would Pet Sounds? and hell, some people can find fault with Pet Sounds — i heard someone in another thread say they wish it ended with "Trombone Dixie." and why not discuss things in this way? it is, again, the kind of thing that leads to the insights and debates that make message boards worthwhile.

Quote
To put it another way, mind your manners. Disagree with some courtesy.

you ought to grow some thicker skin if this really chaps your ass so much.


Title: Re: Friends
Post by: the captain on October 06, 2009, 07:57:01 AM
Stop looking at my ass and giving me advice in how I care for it.

I don't have any problem with rearranging sequencing for yourself and discussing it; I do it all the time.


Title: Re: Friends
Post by: sleeptalk on October 06, 2009, 12:12:03 PM
Stop looking at my ass and giving me advice in how I care for it.

i can't help it; i truly care for you, luther. here, just let me apply a bit of neosporin...


Title: Re: Friends
Post by: sockittome on November 03, 2009, 10:20:29 AM
I think I'd much prefer to play God, than play god.


Title: Re: Friends
Post by: DefMode66 on February 14, 2010, 09:43:02 AM
Friends is the 14th studio album of the Beach Boys. Released in June of '68 the album  takes full advantage a very talented Dennis Wilson on "Be Still" and "Little Bird. Still a very talented band the Beach Boys sound continues to shine. Interestingly Friends only managed to hit #126 in the US but was highly successful in the UK hitting #13. Mike was MIA for most of the album to concentrate on transcendental meditation. Mike returned in March '68 to complete his vocal sessions.   

Side one
"Meant for You" (Brian Wilson/Mike Love) – 0:38
Features Mike Love on lead vocals
"Friends" (Brian Wilson/Carl Wilson/Dennis Wilson/Al Jardine) – 2:30
Features Carl Wilson on lead vocals
"Wake the World" (Brian Wilson/Al Jardine) – 1:28
Features Brian Wilson and Carl Wilson on lead vocals
"Be Here in the Mornin' " (Brian Wilson/Carl Wilson/Mike Love/Dennis Wilson/Al Jardine) – 2:16
Features Alan Jardine [sped-up], Brian Wilson and Carl Wilson on lead vocals
"When a Man Needs a Woman" (Brian Wilson/Dennis Wilson/Carl Wilson/Al Jardine/Steve Korthof/Jon Parks) – 2:06
Features Brian Wilson on lead vocals
"Passing By" (Brian Wilson) – 2:23
Features Brian Wilson and Al Jardine on lead vocals

Side two
"Anna Lee, the Healer" (Brian Wilson/Mike Love) – 1:51
Features Mike Love on lead vocals
"Little Bird" (Dennis Wilson/Steve Kalinich/Brian Wilson [uncredited]) – 1:57
Features Dennis Wilson on lead vocals
"Be Still" (Dennis Wilson/Steve Kalinich) – 1:22
Features Dennis Wilson on lead vocals
"Busy Doin' Nothin'" (Brian Wilson) – 3:04
Features Brian Wilson on lead vocals
"Diamond Head" (Al Vescovo/Lyle Ritz/Jim Ackley/Brian Wilson) – 3:37
Instrumental
"Transcendental Meditation" (Brian Wilson/Mike Love/Al Jardine) – 1:49
Features Brian Wilson on lead vocals

Foreign editions
The Australian release of Friends had "Good Vibrations" replace "Diamond Head" on Side 2.

The Japanese release of Friends added "Do It Again" as the first song on Side 2.

Singles
"Friends" b/w "Little Bird" (Capitol 2160), 8 April 1968 US #47; UK #25
"Wake the World" featured as the B-side of "Do It Again"


Title: Re: Friends
Post by: tomstuart on February 24, 2010, 03:02:31 PM
If only they'd ended with We're Together Again - which would have perfectly brought the whole friendship theme from the opening two tracks back again for the close - instead of with Transdental Meditation than i'd have given this album a 5. As it is, a very healthy 4.
Be Here In The Mornin' my fave track - experimental, melodic, witty, fantastic track. I also love Little Bird and Busy Doin' Nothin'. And some great instrumentals - Diamond Head takes some really interesting and weird routes.
In my top ten, if not my top five.


Title: Re: Friends
Post by: Alex on March 05, 2010, 12:00:17 PM
Friends is the 14th studio album of the Beach Boys. Released in June of '68 the album  takes full advantage a very talented Dennis Wilson on "Be Still" and "Little Bird. Still a very talented band the Beach Boys sound continues to shine. Interestingly Friends only managed to hit #126 in the US but was highly successful in the UK hitting #13. Mike was MIA for most of the album to concentrate on transcendental meditation. Mike returned in March '68 to complete his vocal sessions.   

Side one
"Meant for You" (Brian Wilson/Mike Love) – 0:38
Features Mike Love on lead vocals
"Friends" (Brian Wilson/Carl Wilson/Dennis Wilson/Al Jardine) – 2:30
Features Carl Wilson on lead vocals
"Wake the World" (Brian Wilson/Al Jardine) – 1:28
Features Brian Wilson and Carl Wilson on lead vocals
"Be Here in the Mornin' " (Brian Wilson/Carl Wilson/Mike Love/Dennis Wilson/Al Jardine) – 2:16
Features Alan Jardine [sped-up], Brian Wilson and Carl Wilson on lead vocals
"When a Man Needs a Woman" (Brian Wilson/Dennis Wilson/Carl Wilson/Al Jardine/Steve Korthof/Jon Parks) – 2:06
Features Brian Wilson on lead vocals
"Passing By" (Brian Wilson) – 2:23
Features Brian Wilson and Al Jardine on lead vocals

Side two
"Anna Lee, the Healer" (Brian Wilson/Mike Love) – 1:51
Features Mike Love on lead vocals
"Little Bird" (Dennis Wilson/Steve Kalinich/Brian Wilson [uncredited]) – 1:57
Features Dennis Wilson on lead vocals
"Be Still" (Dennis Wilson/Steve Kalinich) – 1:22
Features Dennis Wilson on lead vocals
"Busy Doin' Nothin'" (Brian Wilson) – 3:04
Features Brian Wilson on lead vocals
"Diamond Head" (Al Vescovo/Lyle Ritz/Jim Ackley/Brian Wilson) – 3:37
Instrumental
"Transcendental Meditation" (Brian Wilson/Mike Love/Al Jardine) – 1:49
Features Brian Wilson on lead vocals

Foreign editions
The Australian release of Friends had "Good Vibrations" replace "Diamond Head" on Side 2.

The Japanese release of Friends added "Do It Again" as the first song on Side 2.

Singles
"Friends" b/w "Little Bird" (Capitol 2160), 8 April 1968 US #47; UK #25
"Wake the World" featured as the B-side of "Do It Again"


I apoligize in advance if I come off like a twat here, but I'm sure everyone here knows the stats on all of the BB albums...this is where the hardcore fans hang out...it's not n00b city.


Title: Re: Friends
Post by: Mike's Beard on March 06, 2010, 12:52:55 PM
1) Meant For You 5/5.  Short and sweet the album states it's intentions right up front.
2) Friends 5/5.  Could be their most underrated single of the "second golden era". Much more complex musically beneath the surface then you might realise I suspect.
3) Wake The World 5/5. Lightweight beyond belief yet none the less enjoyable for it.
4) Be Here in the Morning 5/5. See comment above. (Also marks the start of the whole Al sounding just like Brian thing).
5) When a Man Needs a Woman 4/5. A little too sugary perhaps but nice enough.
6) Passing By 5/5. Beautiful track. Can't really say more.
7) Anna Lee The Healer 3/5. Nice harmonies but by this point the band are in danger of being out rocked by Herman's Hermits.
8) Little Bird 3/5. Nice enough but let's face it within a year the man's compostions would be blowing this out of the water.
9) Be Still 4/5. Dennis looking deep into his soul. Won't be the last time.
10) Busy Doin' Nothin' 2/5. Proof positive why Brian wrote the music and Mike the words. Again much more musically complex than you might think at first listen.
11) Diamond Head 3/5. If "All Summer Long" and "Smile" were to make sweet love this would be their bastard offspring.
12) Transcendental Meditation 5/5. Someone switches Brian's Valium for Purple Hearts on this one as the mellow chill fest is shattered by Al and Brian wailing somewhat off key to wacky sax on this jazzy groover.

Final rating 4/5


Title: Re: Friends
Post by: Mr. Cohen on March 19, 2010, 11:59:09 PM
I don't think there is a song on this album I don't like. Even some of the less popular songs on the albums blow me away. Like, for example, the middle section of "Diamond Head" transports somewhere else every time I listen to it, and I honestly can't get enough of the harmonies on "Anna Lee, the Healer".  Sometimes I'll admit that I'm not in the mood for the organ drones of "Be Still", but it's still not a good song. Also, while the vocal take of "Transcendental Meditation" is cute and a nice joke, I'll oftentimes wish I could hear a more fully realized version.  Still, definitely a 5/5 for me.


Title: Re: Friends
Post by: Don_Zabu on March 26, 2010, 04:23:03 PM
As everyone else has said, the album has this perfect relaxing atmosphere to it. It's great.
Though I personally would've replaced "Anna Lee" with "I Went to Sleep" and "Transcendental Meditation" with "Time to Get Alone".


Title: Re: Friends
Post by: LetHimRun on April 02, 2010, 05:07:08 PM
5. When a Man Needs a Woman is a bit weak, but still not enough to keep it from being a 5 for me. I actually like Transcendental Meditation. It sounds like something George Harrison would write with all the dissonance. Past TM, it is a relaxing album to listen to.


Title: Re: Friends
Post by: rab2591 on April 14, 2010, 06:51:54 AM
Five Stars.

I'd rate this my 2nd favorite Beach Boys album (Behind Pet Sounds). From the bass line in 'Little Bird' to the ocean feel of 'Diamond Head' this album is perfect - until the last song...

My View On 'Transcendental Meditation':

Just imagine yourself having listened to the entire 'Pet Sounds' album; you are on the closing bars of 'Caroline, No' - seconds later, 'Transcendental Meditation' comes blasting through the speakers. This is how annoying I find that song. It is so out of place on the album.

Other than that song (which I just skip whenever listening to 'Friends') I find the album to be one of my favorites. It has every element that makes a good record.










Title: Re: Friends
Post by: SmileySam on August 23, 2010, 09:51:25 AM
Wow! I must be the only person who likes that song (Transcendental Meditation). That's actually one of my favourite songs from the album. I just love Brian's vocal on that one


Title: Re: Friends
Post by: phirnis on August 23, 2010, 12:17:47 PM
Wow! I must be the only person who likes that song (Transcendental Meditation). That's actually one of my favourite songs from the album. I just love Brian's vocal on that one

I like it too, in fact I love it. Great song to end a great album. 5/5


Title: Re: Friends
Post by: Compost on August 23, 2010, 12:52:15 PM
I would have a threesome with this album and 'Wild Honey'.  'Smiley Smile' and '20/20' could watch.


Title: Re: Friends
Post by: SmileySam on August 23, 2010, 05:11:35 PM
I would have a threesome with this album and 'Wild Honey'.  'Smiley Smile' and '20/20' could watch.


 :lol I'll invite Sunflower too! But for gosh sakes, don't even think of inviting 15 Big Ones. He's such a buzz-kill


Title: Re: Friends
Post by: Lorenschwartz on August 24, 2010, 05:36:22 PM
i'm baaaaaaack!


Title: Re: Friends
Post by: the captain on August 24, 2010, 06:16:06 PM
i'm baaaaaaack!
Lovely. Who are you, and when and why were you gone?


Title: Re: Friends
Post by: Lorenschwartz on August 24, 2010, 06:23:42 PM
i'm baaaaaaack!
Lovely. Who are you, and when and why were you gone?
Luther, i'm the guy that turned a blind eye into the sky, then flew back down...
             cursed the concrete, and hit the street, pounded out a 4/4 beat.

i was thusly exiled when i had crushed a smile back in 2005.


Now i'm reborn again. Living in the Pac-northwest. I promise to be good.
 Hood.


Title: Re: Friends
Post by: the captain on August 24, 2010, 07:02:03 PM
Grand.


Title: Re: Friends
Post by: Mahalo on March 22, 2011, 10:08:39 AM
Listening very carefully to Busy Doin' Nothing, I think there is a theremin line buried underneath the mix coming out of the right channel, at the start of the second verse. Has anyone else noticed it?


Title: Re: Friends
Post by: Amazing Larry on March 22, 2011, 12:17:12 PM
I did! It's quite easy to hear when you OOPS it.


Title: Re: Friends
Post by: rab2591 on March 26, 2011, 07:09:26 PM
Listening very carefully to Busy Doin' Nothing, I think there is a theremin line buried underneath the mix coming out of the right channel, at the start of the second verse. Has anyone else noticed it?

I'm listening to Friends right now with my studio monitor headphones - I can't believe I haven't tried listening to this album with these headphones before. Definitely heard the theremin and I'm also hearing so many different sounds that I've never heard before....such as:

:28 seconds into 'Wake the World' there is some very distant background chatter - it is incredibly faint. There is also some chatter around the 1:21 mark.
At exactly 1:23 into 'Be Here In The Mornin'' there is a short and faint high-pitched humming coming out of the left speaker.
At :44 in 'When A Man Needs A Woman' someone says "yeah" - I can only hear this on my headphones. Also, there sounds like there is a separate vocal recording around the 1:42 mark - it's a falsetto being sung in the same key - I can't understand the lyrics, but the melody fits the song perfectly...unfortunately it is buried in the mix.

This album is incredible. Okay, totally happy that the SMiLE boxset is coming out, but I'd be really happy if I had a Friends boxset too! Please!







Title: Re: Friends
Post by: Jonas on March 26, 2011, 07:17:38 PM
Friends boxset yummmmmmmmmmmmmm


Title: Re: Friends
Post by: Mahalo on March 26, 2011, 07:24:01 PM
Haven't tried it yet, but am going to try it in the dark with headphones later on...However rab I couldn't wait to tell you how much I love your new avatar!


Title: Re: Friends
Post by: rab2591 on March 26, 2011, 07:31:50 PM
Haven't tried it yet, but am going to try it in the dark with headphones later on...However rab I couldn't wait to tell you how much I love your new avatar!

:lol thanks! The world just wouldn't be the same without Gary Abusey!


Title: Re: Friends
Post by: Dunderhead on March 27, 2011, 02:53:00 PM
Listening very carefully to Busy Doin' Nothing, I think there is a theremin line buried underneath the mix coming out of the right channel, at the start of the second verse. Has anyone else noticed it?

I'm listening to Friends right now with my studio monitor headphones - I can't believe I haven't tried listening to this album with these headphones before. Definitely heard the theremin and I'm also hearing so many different sounds that I've never heard before....such as:

:28 seconds into 'Wake the World' there is some very distant background chatter - it is incredibly faint. There is also some chatter around the 1:21 mark.
At exactly 1:23 into 'Be Here In The Mornin'' there is a short and faint high-pitched humming coming out of the left speaker.
At :44 in 'When A Man Needs A Woman' someone says "yeah" - I can only hear this on my headphones. Also, there sounds like there is a separate vocal recording around the 1:42 mark - it's a falsetto being sung in the same key - I can't understand the lyrics, but the melody fits the song perfectly...unfortunately it is buried in the mix.

This album is incredible. Okay, totally happy that the SMiLE boxset is coming out, but I'd be really happy if I had a Friends boxset too! Please!


Agreed. On WAMNAW I've always thought the extra vocals are actually a kid or baby. Also right after that part listen for the extra strong kick, which I guess is like a baby kicking in the womb.
I also love the doorbell on the chorus of Be Here in The Mornin'

This is secretly Brian's best album.


Title: Re: Friends
Post by: the captain on March 27, 2011, 04:39:02 PM

This is secretly Brian's best album.
And maybe not even that well-kept a secret. Really great as it is, with the depth and intelligence but without any pretentiousness.


Title: Re: Friends
Post by: Dunderhead on March 27, 2011, 05:13:42 PM
I always loved how the title cut was a waltz. Musically it's really great, like the opposite of Heroes and Villains, as that song "goes all the way down" Friends goes all the way up, like a Friendship growing stronger and stronger. The stumbling waltz rhythm is like the give and take, the dance of friendship.

A lot of the songs are really clever like that, Busy Doin' Nothing and Passing By especially. Brian just did really well on them.

There doesn't seem to be much of anything that was recorded that didn't end up on the album, "Spanish Guitar Instrumental" was from Friend's sessions. Then there's "You're As Cool As You Can Be" and "Untitled #1". So there's probably not much that could be put on a Friends sessions box. Those songs were probably only fragments anyway.

What other songs would you guys put on Friends? I Went to Sleep? Time To Get Alone? We're Together Again? Ol' Man River? Walk On By?


Title: Re: Friends
Post by: Myk Luhv on March 27, 2011, 05:41:23 PM
Definitely remove "Transcendental Meditation" and put "We're Together Again" in its place. Plus, it'd fit the theme better!


Title: Re: Friends
Post by: rab2591 on March 27, 2011, 06:03:11 PM
I know many people love the song TM....often it is goaded as being part of Brian's humor...Maybe it is...if so, then I find this attempt at humor to be annoying. I should clarify: the song in itself is not annoying, and possibly funny. However, it is a buzzkill on the album.

I'd just end the album at 'Diamond Head' - When listening to it I see myself alone on Diamond Head watching the sunset paint the sky...slowly getting darker and until the song ends...this is where the album should have ended. Instead, TM comes blasting on (at what seems about 500 decibels higher than the safe listening level) and ruins the vibe (for me, anyways).

I see the entire album as a story of growing up and maturing into adulthood....it has a real Pet Sounds vibe to it. I think I've mentioned this before, but one thing that bugged me about Peter Carlin's book was that not enough time was spent in the Friends era. I want details about Brian's writing. I want snapshots of the studio. Even on 'Brian Wilson Songwriter' there wasn't much info on Friends - I just remember Bruce Johnston lambasting the album for sucking tremendously.


Title: Re: Friends
Post by: rab2591 on March 27, 2011, 06:09:39 PM
Listening very carefully to Busy Doin' Nothing, I think there is a theremin line buried underneath the mix coming out of the right channel, at the start of the second verse. Has anyone else noticed it?

I'm listening to Friends right now with my studio monitor headphones - I can't believe I haven't tried listening to this album with these headphones before. Definitely heard the theremin and I'm also hearing so many different sounds that I've never heard before....such as:

:28 seconds into 'Wake the World' there is some very distant background chatter - it is incredibly faint. There is also some chatter around the 1:21 mark.
At exactly 1:23 into 'Be Here In The Mornin'' there is a short and faint high-pitched humming coming out of the left speaker.
At :44 in 'When A Man Needs A Woman' someone says "yeah" - I can only hear this on my headphones. Also, there sounds like there is a separate vocal recording around the 1:42 mark - it's a falsetto being sung in the same key - I can't understand the lyrics, but the melody fits the song perfectly...unfortunately it is buried in the mix.

This album is incredible. Okay, totally happy that the SMiLE boxset is coming out, but I'd be really happy if I had a Friends boxset too! Please!


Agreed. On WAMNAW I've always thought the extra vocals are actually a kid or baby. Also right after that part listen for the extra strong kick, which I guess is like a baby kicking in the womb.
I also love the doorbell on the chorus of Be Here in The Mornin'

This is secretly Brian's best album.

Is the kick at 1:53 on the right speaker? I hear a deep heavy bass "kick" there. Love the theory btw! There are a lot of audio tricks (that seem to have a lot of meaning) peppered throughout this album.


Title: Re: Friends
Post by: Dunderhead on March 27, 2011, 06:23:05 PM
There's also of course the sound of curtains sliding open on Wake The World


Title: Re: Friends
Post by: hypehat on March 27, 2011, 06:27:54 PM
And the 'Well, alright!' when they sing about getting no calls from their ACTUAL managers. It's so bloody homebrewed, yet with exquisite production. An example to lo-fi musicians everywhere. This could be a perfect record. TM works as a drone jazz thing, and it is so woozy it doesn't throw me off so much.

That said, I see absolutely no reason why Brian decided to leave off TTGA or IWTS, unless they weren't finished.


Title: Re: Friends
Post by: Jonas on March 29, 2011, 01:15:34 PM
I don't think I'd want a Friends box set for the unreleased material as much as I'd want instrumentals, vocals only, and seeeessssiiiooonnnsssssss (though I always assumed a lot of these backing tracks were one shots)


Title: Re: Friends
Post by: rab2591 on March 29, 2011, 03:16:22 PM
I don't think I'd want a Friends box set for the unreleased material as much as I'd want instrumentals, vocals only, and seeeessssiiiooonnnsssssss (though I always assumed a lot of these backing tracks were one shots)


Most definitely. I'd love to hear a vocals-only Anna Lee. Besides Pet Sounds, I think Friends is the most accessible, most underrated Beach Boys album and it does deserve a Boxset. But I'm not complaining about what we have got already (and what we will be getting in the next few months).


Title: Re: Friends
Post by: Don_Zabu on April 30, 2011, 07:28:45 PM
Listen to the way Mike's voice resonates on "Meant For You" - could they have asked for a better bass singer?


Title: Re: Friends
Post by: Liamo on February 29, 2012, 05:54:31 AM
Has it struck anyone that Brian was planning on making a break with the BBs after Friends; it has the same wistful, nostalgic feeling of Bridge Over Troubled Waters. That sense of saying goodbye to old friends. The title track itself, meant for you, the ‘good luck’ of wake the world. It seems to explore his need to get away from the pressures of the music industry to a more domesticated relaxed lifestyle (busy doin nothing, anna lee), and family life (when a man needs a woman).
In addition, the instrumental Diamond Head conveys a sense of wanting to get away from it all, while ‘I went to sleep’ apparently dates from the same sessions. Even the amount of co-writing credits gives the impression that he was passing on the songwriting craft to the others so they could carry on without him.
Obviously, circumstances kept him in the band but 20/20 shows a greater reluctance to get involved and late sixties tracks like Breakaway and We’re together again illustrate how he was conflicted about his commitments. Perhaps I’m reading too much into it.
It’s a wonderful album in any case – as someone mentioned, a balming breeze on a summers’ day.


Title: Re: Friends
Post by: vandykepeter on May 29, 2012, 05:49:11 AM
Thanks to all of your wonderful reviews, I went out and bought this album! :-)

It's wonderful! I can highly recommend doing the same, if you like the more mellow side of The Beach Boys!

Besides the title track and Brian's "Busy Doin' Nothin'" I especially like "Be Here In The Morning"!

It's not a 5 because, ultimately, it lacks the magical productions and energy that Brian exhibited in the mid-60's. Therefore a big 4!


Title: Re: Friends
Post by: musicismylife101 on June 27, 2012, 03:32:46 PM
Nice mellow and laid-back album. Nice to listen to when you relax. Track picks: Little Bird and Busy Doin' Nothing


Title: Re: Friends
Post by: Domino on December 24, 2012, 12:39:05 PM
Meant for you - Epic opening
Friends - "Let's be friends", unbelievably great
Wake the World - Brian isn't wasting time
Be Here in the Morning - That chorus with Carl and Brian!
When A Man Needs A Woman - Great verses, but the chorus isn't that great.
Passing By - Forget all your problems, you are in heaven
Anna Lee, The Healer - Not great lyrics by Mike
Little Bird - Brian brings in the icing on Dennis cake
Be Still - Kinda boring
Busy Doin' Nothin' - Such a perfect vocal delivery
Diamond Head - Cool stuff
Transcendental Meditation - Great wtf moment


Title: Re: Friends
Post by: Les Garçons de la plage on February 24, 2013, 10:51:20 AM
Not as good as Wild Honey but slightly better than White Album by their UK colleagues which still makes one ask why was this not deservedly appreciated at its time?


Title: Re: Friends
Post by: Puggal on March 06, 2013, 12:22:57 AM
Be Still and Transcendental Meditation are just plain awful. Most of the other songs are okay  to really good, though, and I like "Busy Doin' Nothing" and "Passing By" as much as anything on Pet Sounds or Smile, really.

I can't get it more than a 3/5, though I want to give it a 4. I think it has a mostly nice flow (until Transcendental Meditation wrecks it at the end), but that isn't enough to really give it any more than a 3.

If Smiley Smile is a 4 or 4.5, and Wild Honey is a 4, this has gotta be a 3. Suwwy folx


Title: Re: Friends
Post by: silodweller on July 05, 2013, 09:45:21 AM
This has always been a favourite of mine.  I do tend to skip "Transcendental Meditation" though and program the player to jump straight to "We're Together Again".  That song seems to fit in so well.   


Title: Re: Friends
Post by: silodweller on July 05, 2013, 11:40:21 AM
Does anyone know why they chose to include two distinctly different edits of "Ol' Folks At Home/Old Man River" for the 1990 and 2001 releases?  Compare the two if you're able to, it's very obvious. 


Title: Re: Friends
Post by: Orange Crate Art on July 11, 2013, 07:26:14 AM
I love the Friends album. It's a sweet and cozy little record, until Transcendental Meditation knocks you in the head at the end. I love the two Dennis songs, love Busy Doin Nothin and the title track, Wake The World is great fun (although it's better as a live track on Beach Boys '69). I would've replaced When A Man Needs A Woman and TM with something different, maybe Sail Plane Song and We're Together Again. Great album though. It definitely gets played on my turntable and CD player quite often.


Title: Re: Friends
Post by: bluesno1fann on August 30, 2013, 04:44:51 AM
When I first listened to "Friends" in it's entirety, I was quite impressed. I really enjoyed.
But I never listened to the whole album more than once. Just my opinion, but while still a great album, it's definetely NOT one of my favourites, and I prefer the other albums of the 1967-1971 era over this.
Having said that, this may be because this album never quite grew on me. I dunno why, it may be because parts of it is quite boring. I'm not too sure.
3 tracks grew on me. The title track, "Little Bird" and "Be Still".
3 out of 5


Title: Re: Friends
Post by: chrs_mrgn on September 13, 2013, 04:13:48 PM

First of all, now that I have heard the version of Meant For You on MIC I really wish it had been on Friends rather than the short version.

The short version was one of my favorite tracks even with its length. Mike does a great vocal on it as do the rest of the boys but the alternate version is just great.

The title track really was a grower for me. Didn't care for it at all when I first heard it but it slowly has been one I've found myself visiting more often.

Be Here In The Mornin - that lead vocal is just crazy! I thought for the longest time that there was some sort of effect on it, who is doing the lead vocal? Is That Bruce? Also Dennis adds some magic to the end of the track as his vocal is sounding pretty gruff.

When a man needs a woman reminds me a lot of the band Of Montreal. I was listening to them a lot along the time when I first heard this song around 2009. The guitar work really reminds me of their stuff from 2005 to around 2009. If you want to heard some new music PM me and I can give you some reccommendations of what to listen from them.

Anna Lee The Healer - this song I heard around the same time as I heard Smiley Smile so I thought that this was sort of the kind of material that the BB put out consistently. In fact it would fit in with Smiley Smile really well don't you think?

I think overall I give this album a 3.75/5


Title: Re: Friends
Post by: RiC on November 13, 2013, 11:07:22 AM
5/5. Up there with Love You. It always get me into better mood. The two instrumentals are both amazing and there's not a one dull song on the whole album. Pure Masterpiece.

Meant for You 5/5 Propably the best little song ever. Maybe even better than Ding Dang!
Friends 4/5
Wake the World 5/5 So underrated!
Be Here in the Mornin' 5/5 I love Dennis at the end.
When a Man Needs a Woman 4.5/5
Passing By 5/5
Anna Lee, the Healer 4/5
Little Bird 5/5
Be Still 4/5
Busy Doin' Nothin' 5/5 Just awesome.
Diamond Head 5/5
Transcendental Meditation 3.5/5 The lyrics are a little bit off. Music's great.


Title: Re: Friends
Post by: Mr. Wilson on December 12, 2013, 12:22:21 PM
4/5 I prefer side 1. It flows and don't skip any songs.. Side 2 is weaker.. TTGA IWTS WTA should be on here and take off the last 2 tracks plus Anna Lee is a clinker to me also.. This LP sure didn't fit the times it was recorded in that's for sure..


Title: Re: Friends
Post by: Summer_Days on January 01, 2014, 10:54:24 AM
In it's best moments ('Friends', 'Wake The World', 'Meant For You', 'Little Bird', 'Be Still' and 'Busy Doin' Nothin''), this album can feel transcendent. Friends is the sound of the Beach Boys completely out of step musically, lyrically, emotionally with the late 1960s... and I'm
all the more glad that they were; it makes the music stand up more over decades, keeping it from being overly dated. When you discover albums like Friends, Wild Honey, Smiley Smile, 20/20, Sunflower, Surf's Up, CATP and Holland, you feel and hear a band that is quietly making some of the best and often most unnervingly sweet music ever. The Beach Boys couldn't be less popular in this era (stateside, anyway) and honestly, looking back, I'm glad for it. That makes the discovery of these albums all the more special. It's like buried treasure.

Friends is music for my tired soul to cool out by. 4.5 outta 5.


Title: Re: Friends
Post by: Moon Dawg on January 01, 2014, 12:05:13 PM
  FRIENDS was a sleeper, for me anyway. In its way, ideal soundtrack music for a beautiful summer day. I remember various tracks going through my mind while floating in the pool once.

 Does it rate with the great rock albums of 1968? (BEGGARS BANQUET, THE BEATLES, ELECTRIC LADYLAND, CROWN OF CREATION, etc?) Doesn't really matter as this LP seems to exist in a context of its own. And as David Leaf once noted, it is a bridge to the more sonically sophisticated SUNFLOWER.


 ****


Title: Re: Friends
Post by: Dudd on January 01, 2014, 03:53:57 PM
Friends is overall a lovely album, though just a little overrated - Little Bird and Meant For You honestly don't do a lot for me. And I have to agree with everyone else that TM is a rubbish closer. It's a shame... I think Can't Wait Too Long would have been the ideal way to end this one. But oh well.

Everything else, however, is gorgeous! Passing By and Busy Doin' Nothing are two near-perfect tracks.


Title: Re: Friends
Post by: punkinhead on January 05, 2014, 09:21:08 PM
4/5 I prefer side 1. It flows and don't skip any songs.. Side 2 is weaker.. TTGA IWTS WTA should be on here and take off the last 2 tracks plus Anna Lee is a clinker to me also.. This LP sure didn't fit the times it was recorded in that's for sure..
I was just about to post how much Side 1 is superior in the way of how it flows and it sounds. The production quality is more homely brewed with the basic organ and easy percussion. I always thought Anna Lee/Little Bird and somewhat Busy Doin nothin were similar to side 1 but Little Bird is a little more high quality and Busy is really well orchestrated...not that I love any of the side 1 or side 2 tracks more, that's just the way I view their sounds.


Title: Re: Friends
Post by: Mr. Wilson on January 16, 2014, 09:06:55 PM
Oh I wouldn't take off Little Bird Or Busy Doin Nothin BOTH Gems.. I'd take off Diamond Head.. Anna Lee  + Transendental Meditation off and replace those 3 then you would have perfection..IMHO


Title: Re: Friends
Post by: Blue2013 on January 28, 2014, 10:59:37 PM
****
Best track: Wake The World


Title: Re: Friends
Post by: slippingonthrough on March 08, 2014, 12:09:33 AM
Friends is the chill-out relax album of The Beach Boys. It's just simply cool to listen too.

Meant For You: Great opener. Makes the listener feel welcome.
Friends: Let's Be Frieeeennnndddssss!
Wake The World: Great Song. I like the infinite loop thing at the end.
Be Here In The Morning: Groovy tune. Kinda sounds like a young Michael Jackson. Like it a lot.
When A Man Needs A Women: Innocent little tune. Good song. Love the "when the two get together huh huh huh huh huh huh" line. Hilarious.
Passing By: ..................Sorry I was daydreaming. Nice little instrumental thing.
Anna Lee, The Healer: Love the groove of this.
Little Bird: Denny's big break. One of my favourites on this album.
Be Still: Love the simplicity of this.
Busy Doin' Nothin': Another genius tune by the genius.
Diamond Head: The only song I don't really like on here. Maybe It'll grow on me.
Transcendental Meditation: Wait... Mike doesn't sing this :o Maybe Brian was just trying to embarrass TM. :D Cool tune though.

Overall it's a nice easy listening album.

5/5


Title: Re: Friends
Post by: Rocket on July 21, 2014, 03:28:39 PM
Call me crazy, but I think this album has surpassed Pet Sounds for me as my favorite album ever.

It's so relaxing, just puts me in a chill mood no matter what I'm doing or thinking about.

5/5 for me, no doubt. Every song is awesome, even Transcendental Meditation.

Plus, I'm a sucker for short albums!


Title: Re: Friends
Post by: Hot Rod on August 23, 2014, 12:04:01 PM
Friends is perfect except for Transcendental Meditation. This song is so bad it nearly destroys the mood of the album. But just nearly. Still 5/5.


Title: Re: Friends
Post by: Little Pad on August 23, 2014, 04:56:50 PM
4/5. Not really that into the last couple songs. I like that this is the only Beach Boys album (that I've heard anyways) that sounds super bossa nova-y. Super chill.


Title: Re: Friends
Post by: Niko on August 23, 2014, 04:59:42 PM
Bossa-nova is a style, and the only song on the record in that style is Busy Doin' Nothing...

but it is a perfect relaxed summer afternoon record


Title: Re: Friends
Post by: Little Pad on August 23, 2014, 05:52:51 PM
Bossa-nova is a style, and the only song on the record in that style is Busy Doin' Nothing...

but it is a perfect relaxed summer afternoon record

True. Even when it doesn't sound super Brazilian, the chord progressions on it are really unique and don't really seem to pop up much in their other work ("Passing By" and the verse on "Friends" stick out for me).


Title: Re: Friends
Post by: Cool Cool Water on February 02, 2015, 01:27:45 PM
5/5

This album is remarkable for its juxtaposition of playful Brian Wilson-penned tracks, sensitive Dennis Wilson compositions (his first on a Beach Boys album) & member to member collaborations. An album of pure bliss, the title track -"Friends" has a wonderful melody, with great simply (happy) lyrics. "Be Here in the Morning" is just fun to sing along to. "Busy Doin' Nothin'" gives actual directions to Brian's house, it has a wonderful melody & arrangement. "Little Bird" (one of favourite BB/Dennis tracks ever)is Dennis Wilson showing that the messed-up middle brother has a soul, his incredible talent and what a hooky' bass line! Mikes influence and going on's at the time, formed a great tune called "Transcendental Meditation", while a great edition to fit was "Diamond Head". A surfer's heaven to chill-out.



Title: Re: Friends
Post by: Mujan, 8@$+@Rc| of a Blue Wizard on February 09, 2015, 10:06:43 PM
Yet another flawed late Sixties/Early Seventies Beach Boys album. Like so many others, there's moments of beauty but it's muddled by bad stuff and leaves me with a mixed bag. This truly feels like the perfect blend of Wild Honey with what they had been doing before that and Smiley kinda faltered their momentum. I think between WH and this, there's an absolutely stunning album worthy of following up Pet Sounds and the SMiLE fragments in there somewhere. I think some ambitious fan ought to edit together a best-of compilation of those two and you'd get something greater than the sum of its parts. As Friends stands now, I give it a 3/5, with at least one star taken off for that awful finale.

Mike, Mike, Mike...what are we gonna do with you? You're passionate about something. It's nice. And you want to express that passion in your music. Also nice. But did we really need like 3, 4 different songs about TM?? Seriously? I guess this is the wrong place to complain about this because it was the first time, but this is the last one I've gotten around to listening to so I'll do it here. Stop trying to make TM happen. It's not going to happen. I dont mean to squash the man's dreams, but thats really what someone should have said to him back in the day. Especially after the second TM song. It's one thing if you were to write about it obliquely/metaphorically. But Mike wasnt subtle or talented enough to do that. So he just says the damn two words that sound SO unharmonious again and again. That's not the way to convert people, Mike. Be creative. Be...musical. C'mon man. C'mon.

Ok. Had to get that off my chest, cause that really was the most overwhelming thought I had when the music stopped. That one song absolutely ruins the flow of the album and leaves it on a terribly sour note. Anyway, let's work our way backwards then, shall we?

Diamond Head is a nice, calming little instrumental. Not one of their best, but very soothing and laid back so it fits well enough. Especially for something allegedly done off the cuff in the studio, its really good.

Busy Doin Nothing is maybe my favorite song on the album. The lyrics are kinda substandard in parts, but the beautiful vocal performance and melody more than salvage it. Gorgeous.

Be still. Well, it's certainly serene and a pleasant listen. But overall it's pretty short and maybe not well placed on the album.

Little Bird is another highlight. Good guy Dennis, just coming in outta the blue and writing one of the best songs the Boys did since the aborted SMiLE material. The Child horns fit it well, too.

Anna Lee the Healer...this one I'm not too big a fan of. Simple as that.

Passing By is a decent instrumental. But this is coming from the guy who wrote Fire, Pet Sounds (the song) and Let's Go Away for Awhile. And it falls very, very short of ALL of those. It just doesn't really go anywhere. It comes on, drones on and ends before it really leaves any kind of impression or takes us anywhere.

When a Woman Needs a Man...I'm not really a fan. Rhyme unintended.

Be Here in the Mornin and Wake the world kinda blend together and, again, I dont particularly care for either song.

Meant for you going into Friends is a really nice opening. Friends itself is a really nice song but maybe wasnt the best choice for a single. I like it, but can see why it did little to turn the tides after Smiley and Wild Honey torpedoed their studio album's successes.

So yeah, once again, 3/5. Very cohesive in terms of feel and instrumentation. But very mixed in terms of actual song quality. Once again I say, If Wild Honey and Friends' best songs were put together on a single album, I think you'd have an impeccably brilliant work of art on par with Pet Sounds and possibly even what SMiLE promised to be. Instead, we got two flawed albums when the group desperately needed a knockout to salvage their reputation when Smiley rubbed people the wrong way.





Title: Re: Friends
Post by: halblaineisgood on February 09, 2015, 10:26:02 PM
If Wild Honey and Friends' best songs were put together on a single album, I think you'd have an impeccably brilliant work of art



Wild Honey is an impeccably brilliant work of art as is. Them's just the facts, son.

And as far as Mike's offputting tendencies to let the TM lifestyle intrude upon their music--that didn't begin to become a nuisance until "Everyone's In Love with You" . 




Title: Re: Friends
Post by: Mujan, 8@$+@Rc| of a Blue Wizard on February 09, 2015, 11:01:14 PM
If Wild Honey and Friends' best songs were put together on a single album, I think you'd have an impeccably brilliant work of art



Wild Honey is an impeccably brilliant work of art as is. Them's just the facts, son.

And as far as Mike's off-putting tendencies to let the TM lifestyle intrude upon their music--that didn't begin to become a nuisance until "Everyone's In Love with You" . 


I'm afraid I disagree. It's a nice enough little album. So is Friends. Obviously it's pointless to try to rewrite the past, but I can't help but feel like the high points of both, when combined, would have combined to make an album just as great as Pet Sounds.

I conceded that it may not be appropriate to complain about the TM songs on a review of this particular album. It's just that this happened to be the album I listened to (out of chronological order, admittedly) where it really made me facepalm and ask "WHY?!?!" to no one in particular.


Title: Re: Friends
Post by: drbeachboy on February 10, 2015, 08:06:25 AM
Interesting, I never thought about Transcendental Meditation as really connected to Mike or Al, as I know both have writing credits on it, but musically, it is a Brian song through and through. Actually, I only hear Brian singing, as well. I don't really care who else was involved with it, it is a terrific discordant jazz track. On Friends, it is the ironic jolt back to reality. Brian does have a great sense of humor, for sure. ;)


Title: Re: Friends
Post by: Mujan, 8@$+@Rc| of a Blue Wizard on February 11, 2015, 10:51:55 AM
Interesting, I never thought about Transcendental Meditation as really connected to Mike or Al, as I know both have writing credits on it, but musically, it is a Brian song through and through. Actually, I only hear Brian singing, as well. I don't really care who else was involved with it, it is a terrific discordant jazz track. On Friends, it is the ironic jolt back to reality. Brian does have a great sense of humor, for sure. ;)

I mean, he has a writing credit and he's written like 4 other songs on the subject, all of them similarly terrible (imo.)

I don't think Friends needed a jolt to reality at the end. What's unrealistic about the rest of it? It's just a nice, laid back album about friendship (for the most part.) TM just kills that musical and thematic flow. Maybe TM should have been a standalone single in place of Friends. And they should have finished Cant Wait Too Long. If not for WH, then for this. It's one of the best songs they ever did, I'd say.


Title: Re: Friends
Post by: drbeachboy on February 11, 2015, 11:24:59 AM
Interesting, I never thought about Transcendental Meditation as really connected to Mike or Al, as I know both have writing credits on it, but musically, it is a Brian song through and through. Actually, I only hear Brian singing, as well. I don't really care who else was involved with it, it is a terrific discordant jazz track. On Friends, it is the ironic jolt back to reality. Brian does have a great sense of humor, for sure. ;)

I mean, he has a writing credit and he's written like 4 other songs on the subject, all of them similarly terrible (imo.)

I don't think Friends needed a jolt to reality at the end. What's unrealistic about the rest of it? It's just a nice, laid back album about friendship (for the most part.) TM just kills that musical and thematic flow. Maybe TM should have been a standalone single in place of Friends. And they should have finished Cant Wait Too Long. If not for WH, then for this. It's one of the best songs they ever did, I'd say.
The album is very mellow and lulls a person into a very relaxed state of mind. Then the jolt happens. I think it is genius. Also don't you find it ironic that a song about TM is so loud and discordant? The music is the complete opposite of what TM is all about. Brian got the perfect effect that he was going after.


Title: Re: Friends
Post by: Mike Garneau on February 11, 2015, 11:43:16 AM
Interesting, I never thought about Transcendental Meditation as really connected to Mike or Al, as I know both have writing credits on it, but musically, it is a Brian song through and through. Actually, I only hear Brian singing, as well. I don't really care who else was involved with it, it is a terrific discordant jazz track. On Friends, it is the ironic jolt back to reality. Brian does have a great sense of humor, for sure. ;)

I mean, he has a writing credit and he's written like 4 other songs on the subject, all of them similarly terrible (imo.)

I don't think Friends needed a jolt to reality at the end. What's unrealistic about the rest of it? It's just a nice, laid back album about friendship (for the most part.) TM just kills that musical and thematic flow. Maybe TM should have been a standalone single in place of Friends. And they should have finished Cant Wait Too Long. If not for WH, then for this. It's one of the best songs they ever did, I'd say.
The album is very mellow and lulls a person into a very relaxed state of mind. Then the jolt happens. I think it is genius. Also don't you find it ironic that a song about TM is so loud and discordant? The music is the complete opposite of what TM is all about. Brian got the perfect effect that he was going after.

I've often wondered why Transcendental Meditation was such a loud song with those chaotic chords. Just what you said...it's the complete opposite of what it's really about.


Title: Re: Friends
Post by: dcowboys107 on February 19, 2015, 11:30:26 AM
I just listened to the entire album for the first time ever today, so I don't have any attachment or real track history with these songs.  I had previously listened to "Friends", "Little Bird" and heard the instrumental to "TM" on the Made in California box as well as the long version of "Meant for You".

"Meant For You": Very beautiful, melancholy, touching, and evocative (for me).  Reminds me of special people who are no longer in my life for various reasons. 5/5  

"Friends": I like the bridge to the song but for whatever reasons I don't really like this song that much even though it's a quality composition and pretty well executed. 4/5

"Wake The World": Great Song. I love the verses which are simplistic but are the reasons why I love Brian's writing/singing so much. He can make something not complicated and push your buttons emotionally or catch your ear in a way that's tough to explain. The verses I could see myself singing along to.  I also like the chorus and the high falsetto at the end of it. Really trippy.  5/5

"Be Here In The Morning": I see that Al sings the verses but they sound 100% like Brian to me but Al's voice can be easily confused for Brian's like on "I Know There's an Answer."  I can see myself listening to this song in bed with a great woman and feeling the bliss running through my body. 5/5

"When A Man Needs A Women": I really like how this song opens and I love the guitar riff running through the entire song.  I'm a sucker for cheesy organ playing for some reason and I love the organ fill which adds to the quirkiness and child-like feel to this song. I agree that there's something kind of missing to it but I honestly like this song more than "Friends" but I don't think it's a four star song so I'll say 3.75/5.

"Passing By": Interesting little vocal interlude. It fits the mood of the album and is well placed to its credit. I wouldn't skip the track but it's not great either. I'll give it 3.75/5 for placement and execution.

"Anna Lee, The Healer": I love Brian's singing and Mike's voice as well. Very well done and oddly catchy (like lots of post-Pet Sounds songs in my experience). 4.5/5 for sure.

"Little Bird": Songs like this make Dennis such a cool guy in my opinion. I'd play this song for a non-BB fan in a heartbeat and I bet they'd think it was awesome and has a chill groove to it.  I don't the last "Little bird up in a tree. . ." with the mickey mouse singing. I think it sounds out of place and kinda kills the groove a bit. But they do save it at then end with the "little bird. . . so-ong" fade out..  4.25/5.

"Be Still": This album is like Dennis's Beatles for Sale in my opinion. You would never say it's the best but you see where the road leads to and the songs in themselves are good. Again, I'm a sucker for lilting organ songs (or anything organ for the most part) and the simplicity and beauty are transcendent for me.  I'd say 4.25/5.

"Busy Doin' Nothin'": Simple, catchy, odd, frankly a bit bizarre, but well executed and probably one of his best compositions since it fuses world music with Brian's innocent lyrical style with a catchy melody.  5/5

"Diamond Head": It fits the album but not my favorite by any means but I can definitely see myself being in a pool in August in the late afternoon with this song in the background.  4/5 for ambiance and mood.

"Transcendental Meditation": I had heard this on the MIC box in instrumental form and I thought it was oddly really cool. I had played it purpose since I had never listened to the song much less the instrumental version. I had to do a double take when I heard this energetic jazzy instrumental coming over my ear buds with the name of "Transcendental Meditation." I remember semi-thinking to myself that the subject matter probably wouldn't match the instrument track but I still liked it.  Fast forward to actually hearing the finished song, and I think it's endearing, 100% something Brian would do, and I love his voice on it and the "Tomorrow Never Knows" type of drone singing during the verses. I also like the wailing dominant 7th chord (?) during "it's good!"  I tend to agree that it was kind of a joke song Brian had come up with complete with inane lyrics about mediation's benefits. It kind of seems like a slight dig to people like Mike and other people who seemed a bit pretentious with it. Like Brian later said, "it stopped working."  I love the irony and everything about this. Stuck in my head now. 5/5

4/5 overall.

Final thoughts:  I definitely could listen to this album over and over although the "let's be friends" vibe would be tiring after awhile. I think Wild Honey perfectly balances chill, innocence, mysteriousness, with R&B and energy and is non-fatiguing in my experience.

To the commenter who said this is better than The Beatles I just don't see it. Yes, it's a double album and naturally will have filler tracks or not fully-fleshed out songs but Disc 1 is hard to beat and is amazing.  "Back in the USSR" is nearly a perfect rock and roll song in my opinion. It blends parody with a tongue in cheek social statement, with great singing and energy.   The two albums are completely different, however, and a comparison is difficult to make. I think both albums are great in their own right and I'd be in the mood for the The Beatles and not necessarily Friends and vice versa.

Friends wins in the quirkiness department and doesn't sound overly dated and you can see how modern indie bands have been influenced directly or indirectly by it.  The Beatles still sounds fresh and is timeless and in my opinion could be released today and it'd be incredible.


Title: Re: Friends
Post by: KDS on April 14, 2015, 12:24:57 PM
I think the best way to describe the Friends album is short and sweet.  Five for me. 

I think I read it on here that Friends is the perfect album to listen to on a hot summer day.  I couldn't agree more.  I love the laid back feel of the album. 

The title track is a thing of beauty.  I also love Wake the World, Meant for You, and Busy Doin Nothin. 

Dennis Wilson starts to emerge out of brother Brian's shadow here with Little Bird (with a little help from Smile's Child is the Father of the Man) and Be Still. 

I also like the two instrumentals Passing By and Diamond Head. 

The closing track TM grows on me a little more each time I hear it. 


Title: Re: Friends
Post by: George on May 21, 2015, 07:38:44 AM
Friends is the chill-out relax album of The Beach Boys. It's just simply cool to listen too.

Meant For You: Great opener. Makes the listener feel welcome.
Friends: Let's Be Frieeeennnndddssss!
Wake The World: Great Song. I like the infinite loop thing at the end.
Be Here In The Morning: Groovy tune. Kinda sounds like a young Michael Jackson. Like it a lot.
When A Man Needs A Women: Innocent little tune. Good song. Love the "when the two get together huh huh huh huh huh huh" line. Hilarious.
Passing By: ..................Sorry I was daydreaming. Nice little instrumental thing.
Anna Lee, The Healer: Love the groove of this.
Little Bird: Denny's big break. One of my favourites on this album.
Be Still: Love the simplicity of this.
Busy Doin' Nothin': Another genius tune by the genius.
Diamond Head: The only song I don't really like on here. Maybe It'll grow on me.
Transcendental Meditation: Wait... Mike doesn't sing this :o Maybe Brian was just trying to embarrass TM. :D Cool tune though.

Overall it's a nice easy listening album.

5/5


Title: Re: Friends
Post by: Mike's Beard on September 26, 2015, 03:56:03 AM
Meant for you - 5/5
Friends - 5/5
Wake the World - 5/5
Be Here in the Morning - 5/5
When A Man Needs A Woman - 4/5
Passing By - 4/5
Anna Lee, The Healer - 3/5
Little Bird - 3/5
Be Still - 3/5
Busy Doin' Nothin' - 3/5
Diamond Head - 2/5
Transcendental Meditation - 4/5

The most front loaded record the group ever cut. Glad to see the production values are back but some of the songwriting is too lightweight.
Overall 3.5.


Title: Re: Friends
Post by: Lonely Summer on May 02, 2016, 11:46:56 PM
I think side one of this album is nearly perfect; side two is good, but TM has always grated on me; at first I found Diamond Head pointless, but it has grown on me.  And nobody ever sang wordless vocals better than the Beach Boys  - "Passing By".


Title: Re: Friends
Post by: JL on July 30, 2017, 02:46:40 PM
Meant for you: Beautiful, peaceful little tune and a perfect introduction to the album.

Friends: Catchy, innocent, and I love the harmonies on this, as well as the drumming.

Wake the World: Not my favorite song on the album, but still good. Still, very pretty, oddly haunting at times.

Be Here in the Morning: One of my favorites on the album, such a beautiful melody, great group vocals. I especially like the harmony from Al at the beginning and very end ("Uuuhhhhaaahuuuhhh/It's been a such a long day.....") and everyone together with Murry on "Make my life full".

When A Man Needs A Woman: The first 40 seconds or so are wonderful, great vocals from Brian and a nice, bouncy melody (love how he sings "There's a baby/yes there's a baby/about to be booooorn"). I wish there had been more verses like that. The organ solo is cool, but the rest of the song feels a bit lacking.

Passing By - Lovely, wordless tune that I find myself humming a lot.

Anna Lee, The Healer: Beautiful chorus, I like how Brian or Carl say "You" on "You'd love to feel those healing hands" right before the rest jump in. It just adds a little more excitement, I guess. The verses are alright, mostly because of Mike's sensitive singing. The lyrics throughout are sorta silly, too.

Little Bird: One of my favorite Dennis songs, it's so weird, and beautiful, but sad. Good drumming also, and the bridge take it to another level (especially with Carl's voice).

Be Still: Not as good as Little Bird, but still a good step in the right direction for Dennis' songwriting abilities.

Busy Doin' Nothin': I love these laid back, tender lead vocals from Brian. The way he sings "What a hot sticky daaaaa-yeeee-aaayyy" is so neat. It's not of my top Brian tunes overall, but still really good.

Diamond Head: Nice, relaxing music. You can just picture a beach and beautiful water with the sunset in the background.

Transcendental Meditation: Huh.

Overall, I'd give the album a 4/5. Some of the songs are amazing, and the sound of the album is uniquely peaceful, but some of the tracks aren't very substantial and/or don't develop the way I would've liked. I rank it ahead of Wild Honey and Smiley Smile, but below Sunflower and Surf's Up.


Title: Re: Friends
Post by: Gabo on February 19, 2018, 10:48:15 AM
I used to paint to this album. It's so relaxing. Friends really has its time and place.