CullmanTimes.com - Cullman, Alabama

Opinion

April 17, 2011

PLAYBACK:The Beach Boys' Pet Sounds a great summer album

Album review

No one could make a more pleasing sound for memorable summers than The Beach Boys.

Long etched into the minds of Americans and many abroad with their songs about surfing, cars and beautiful sunny thoughts, The Beach Boys topped all their efforts with the landmark recording and release of “Pet Sounds” on May 16, 1966. The record was mostly a reflection of the eccentric but brilliant mind of band member Brian Wilson.

“Pet Sounds” was in many ways an answer to The Beatles’ “Rubber Soul” album, with its flawless vocals and tightly crafted instruments. Wilson and The Beach Boys were certainly masters of harmony and, in their own right, excellent musicians.

Work on “Pet Sounds” began in the summer of 1965 and was recorded at three different studios. Critics loved it. The public bought it, thanks largely to the monster hit single, “Wouldn’t It Be Nice,” which presented classic Beach Boys harmony and feel-good sounds. But it was the rest of the album that revealed a heartfelt, down-to-earth symphony of love, revelation and innocence. Brian Wilson’s place among great writers and composers was forever secure. The remainder of the band contributed warmly to the project and proved that they were far above average.

There’s not a bad track on “Pet Sounds,” but for starters check out “God Only Knows” and “I’m Waiting for the Day,” which features some great vocals. “Caroline, No” and “Sloop John B” are also timeless favorites.

A long lineup of session musicians assisted on this record, including Glen Campbell, who would soon become a star in the country music scene. Instruments ranging from guitars and various horns to cello and ukulele can be heard.

Somehow, in this elaborately crafted recording, The Beach Boys maintain their youthful, sunny sound that fans loved before “Pet Sounds.”

Like all great records that employ some amount of complexity in the recording session, give this record more than one listen. Let it play, over and over. The hooks are memorable and the words and rhythms will stay with you forever.

 

1
Text Only
Opinion
  • EDITORIAL: Primary shows maturity, will of voters

    With the local Republican Primary wrapped up, the outcome of three races may have seemed surprising to some observers.

    July 22, 2014

  • COMMENTARY: A break from the campaign rhetoric

    The collective sigh of relief felt throughout Cullman Wednesday morning signaled the end of another primary political season the previous night. As Wednesday’s Times headline told us, it was a clean sweep.

    July 21, 2014

  • Harris Coleman COMMENTARY: Billy Coleman, a true statesman

    King Solomon said, “Pride will ruin people, but those who are humble will be honored.” He also said, “Where there is no vision, the people perish.” Billy Coleman, the past elected superintendent of Cullman County Schools, is the living example of these wise statements of truth.

    July 20, 2014 1 Photo

  • COMMENTARY: Twisty road back to Cullman

    The young journalist who was somewhat listening to the elder newspaperman on the other side of the desk didn’t have a clue.

    July 19, 2014

  • EDITORIAL: Judge makes the right decision

    Many people are closely following the case of Jay Maynor, the man charged with murdering a man convicted of molesting his daughter 12 years ago.

    July 7, 2014

  • EDITORIAL: Truth and independence

    Somewhere along a colonial road between Lexington and Concord, Americans found their courage and resolve to become independent.

    July 4, 2014

  • EDITORIAL: Taking charge with a vote

    The Democratic and Republican primaries arrive Tuesday morning across the state, with many election officials and candidates fearing a low turnout could be in store for what otherwise should be cause for a great gathering of citizens.

    June 3, 2014

  • EDITORIAL: A state dying from drug use

    Alabama coroners, with the power to order and log results of  toxicology reports, hold the key to important information for families and law enforcement officials.

    May 20, 2014

  • EDITORIAL: Looking beyond the standard

    Cullman County schools superintendent Billy Coleman opened a wide door of opportunity when he supported a transition to an appointed executive to lead the local education system.

    May 20, 2014

  • Editorial: Meal money violates trust

    As various local political candidates dash toward the June 3 primary, a troublesome issue remains unattended on the table.

    May 11, 2014