The Beach Boys – [Album]

Friday, 19 June 2009

Someone wise (I think it was Jim Brickman) once said that, if you're going to do anything, do one thing and do it really well. It's such a simple sentiment, but one that so few musicians ever heed; out of some twisted sense of artistic growth or fulfillment, a band will discover a method of operation that makes them household names only to mess with it until no one cares anymore. It's a sad fact, and the list of acts that have fallen prey to this musical pitfall is both lengthy and star-studded, but this 'one thing' principle is one that The Beach Boys learned well. Armed with just a basic arsenal of content, the Beach Boys discovered early early that all they needed to captivate the popular imagination of every teenager in North America was the state of California; the girls, the surf and the sun. That simple, picturesque and beautiful locale has been singularly responsible for an endless series of hit singles, gold records and a constant inflow of revenue for forty-five years; if proof is requisite that one thing is all you need to live forever, one need look no further than to the Wilson brothers.

Summer Love Songs narrows the scope of The Beach Boys' songbook still further to focus on the girls those boys love so well and the fun they have down in the sand. It's bafflingly simple, but even a quick glance at the list of songs included reveals that each one of these twenty songs is a hit. A quick listen reveals that many of the melodies and structural clichés in songs like “California Girls,” “Don't Worry Baby,” “Surfer Girls” and “Why Do Fools Fall In Love” are near identical too – the only change is usually the tempo. Yet, even with that observation made, there must be something classic and timeless in The Beach Boys' music, because even a passing fan can identify any of these songs without necessarily hearing the title lyric, or even a lyric at all; sometimes that all-important intro hook is all it takes.

Such is the case with these songs. Each of these twenty tracks is well-known in its own right for one reason or another, and there's no denying that there's a formula involved but that doesn't mean that each isn't unique – everyone has a specific memory attached to “God Only Knows,” “Help Me Rhonda,” “Girls On The Beach” and “Don't Worry Baby” and those associative memories are as heartwarming as the soundtrack that The Beach Boys so handily supplied. This collection compiles all of those songs and memories into one handy package for fans to love and the uninitiated to fall in love with; each song gives off a rosy and heartwarming vibe that instantly recalls simpler, easier, more youthful times that everyone can relate to and still wishes for. That's the gift Summer Love Songs offers, and there's no way to not fall for it.


The Beach Boys Online

The Beach Boys Fan Club


Summer Love Songs
is out now and available here on Amazon .

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