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  • Surf’s Up

    The Beach Boys’ 1971 album, Surf’s Up, is titled after a song written by Brian Wilson and Van Dyke Parks for the original Smile project. The song was revived here by Carl Wilson, who added vocal and Moog overdubs to produce a three-movement baroque masterpiece. Carl also produces the solo compositions “Long Promised Road” and “Feel Flows,” and Bruce Johnston contributes “Disney Girls (1957),” which went on to be covered by Art Garfunkel and Cass Elliot. At the suggestion of the band’s new manager, Jack Rieley, the album takes a more socially aware approach to lyrics. On the pump organ-led “A Day in the Life of a Tree,” the narrator is a tree in a polluted city park. This song features the intentionally off-key vocals of Rieley with backups from Parks. One of the most haunting compositions, Brian’s “‘Til I Die” is pop surrealism at its best, and a testament that this album’s high points are especially high.

    Surf’s Up Catalog Number:  Brother RS 6453

    Surf’s Up Track Listing:

    Side One

    1. Don’t Go Near the Water – 2:37

    2. Long Promised Road – 3:28

    3. Take a Load off Your Feet – 2:28

    4. Disney Girls (1957) – 4:07

    5. Student Demonstration Time – 3:45

    Side Two

    1. Feel Flows – 4:44

    2. Lookin’ at Tomorrow (A Welfare Song) – 1:54

    3. A Day in the Life of a Tree – 3:04

    4. ‘Til I Die – 2:29

    5. Surf’s Up – 4:11

    Get Surf’s Up on Vinyl:

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