Thursday, October 06, 2005

The Surfaris Sing For You!

I'm talking, of course, about The Surfaris of "Wipe Out" fame. Even though that record represented the pinnacle of their career, they would still record many fine instrumentals like "Dune Buggy," "Scatter Shield," "Point Panic" (which went to #57) and "Beat '65."

What I've chosen for you with this entry, however, are two examples of the vocal side of The Surfaris. Because while they're still better known for their instrumentals, one shouldn't forget that "Surfer Joe," the vocal B-side of "Wipe Out," also got a significant amount of airplay in its day. It even charted at #62, thereby qualifying their record as a double-sided hit.

You see, The Surfaris also cut a number of hep vocal sides in their career. I have two examples for you, both from their Decca period: "Go Go Go For Louie's Place" (Decca 31605) and "So Get Out (Decca 31954). And with these, we get two opposites. One's a party ditty, the other's a girl putdown that could qualify as The Surfaris going garage punk.

With "Go Go Go For Louie's Place," we get the party. The guy in the song's got his steady, his buddies and friends and he's geared to go to the title place for some action. With appropriate party sound effects, loud, twangy guitars and blasts of sax, the party translates quite well to your own ears, too. The vocals here, though, are a bit on the average side, but they're still tough enough to put the message across.

"So Get Out" is even better. This Gary Usher production features snappy guitar work and vocals that border on snotty as it relates to a guy being told to get out by his soon to be ex. He even seems resigned to the fact in the last verse:

Listen to me baby if you want my love
If you don't want me baby, just give me a shove
and I'll get out.

This is followed by two yells of "GET OUT!" before the song concludes. The band plays with real punch here. No sax this time, just some great, loud guitar work with just a pinch of organ.

So there's your Surfaris two-fer for this evening. Just goes to show that some bands really do have more than one side to them.

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