Album review: Hair – Surf Tribal Love-Rock Musical

Hair – Surf Tribal Love-Rock Musical (OmOm)

Reviewed by DJ Johnson
Original article:

review_va_hairSurf compilations are often fun, creatively programmed affairs, but this one’s a notch or three above the elite. It’s consistently powerful, interesting and fun, and for the aging hippies out there, it’ll be surprising, as well. In that it’s so damned good it won’t seem like sacrilege. The Atlantics kick it off with a version of “Aquarius” that begs the question… are you sure this thing wasn’t written as a surf tune in the first place? It lends itself so perfectly to the dramatic, reverb-drenched atmospherics of surf that it’s impossible to begrudge, so put down the rotten tomatoes and dance, hippies. And smoke ’em if you got ’em, because the ride is just getting started. There’s a Hendrix-in-the-waves psychedelic reading of “Donna/Hashish” by Longhorn Devil, The Surftones’ nice-n-vibey rendition of the title tune, a dreamy version of “Walking In Space” by Glasgow Tiki Shakers, and Kahuna Kawentzmann’s reworking of “Good Morning Starshine,” which sounds a little like Al Caiola fronting a 60s psych band with John Barry getting into the bag of brownies and then arranging some wonderfully screwed up backing. The album closes with return of The Atlantics for a more zonked version of “Aquarius,” a little farther toward the “cool and strange music” that makes exotica fans melt. There are 25 tracks, all told, all entertaining, some very good, and a few of them magical. Let’s see, we’ve had similar tributes to American Graffiti and Jesus Christ Superstar. Can Rocky Horror be far behind? (Or did I miss a memo?)

© 2005 – DJ Johnson