Welcome to Brave New Surf, a showcase for the amazing new sounds of surf music. Here is undeniable evidence that the surf genre is not only still alive but thriving. Surf music’s legendary first wave came to an untimely end at the hands of the British Invasion bands, but the genre was resurrected in 1980 by the great Jon & the Nightriders. In the three decades since, surf music has ebbed and swelled (mostly as an underground phenomenon), growing stronger with each new wave. The past four years have been extraordinarily fruitful in both the number and the quality of new releases. The best of these new tracks – many compiled for you here – can stand toe to toe with the very best of the 1960s.
The songs on this CD testify to a love affair between the musicians and their music. Surf musicians are not in this for the money – almost all have to keep their day jobs – but, rather, because of a deep passion for the music. For them, life is much more satisfying if some part of it is spent playing in a surf band. This passion is shared by an increasingly international community, reaching almost every corner of the world. The bands on this compilation come not only from North America, but also South America and Europe, these two continents emerging in the past decade as real hotbeds of surf music activity.
Surf bands universally start off by playing the 1960s classics. As a result, the surf genre is steeped in the tradition. But while some stay largely within the boundaries of that tradition, others more fully explore the possibilities
only hinted at by the first wave bands, and still others move beyond the boundaries, in some cases obliterating them, pushing surf music into new directions.
No matter what their approach, for every one of the bands here the 1960s foundations provide a springboard to a fresh and individual approach to surf music. Remarkably, while relying on the same basic set of instruments and tonal recipes, each of the bands has its own signature sound, as unique to it as a fingerprint to a person. It’s clear that the full possibilities of surf music for musical creativity (not to mention FUN!) are really only starting to be explored.
September 2011 marked the 50th anniversary of the release of the first surf record, Let’s Go Trippin’ by The King of Surf Guitar, Dick Dale (who celebrated this anniversary by touring the US yet again, at the amazing age of 74). The first half-century of surf music was an amazing ride, but for the bands represented here surf music is NOT a nostalgia trip. They are moving beyond the 1960s standards as the be-all, end-all of surf music.
Surf music has never been so vibrant, so diverse, so charged with energy and excitement. It’s time for the new surf classics. It’s time for BRAVE NEW SURF!