The Beach Boys - Surf's Up (Stereo, 200g)
Al Jardine - backing vocals, bass guitar, rhythm electric guitar (A5)
Mike Love - lead & backing vocals, tenor saxophone (B2)
Brian Wilson – lead & backing vocals, piano, Hammond organ
Carl Wilson – lead & backing vocals, electric guitar
Dennis Wilson – lead & backing vocals, drums
1 LP, gatefold "Old school" Stoughton tip-on jackets
Original analog Master tape : YES
Heavy Press : 200g
Record color : black
Speed : 33 RPM
Size : 12'’
Record Press : Quality Record Pressings
Label : Analogue Productions
Original Label : Capitol
Recorded November 1966 – July 1971 at Sunset Sound, Western, and Columbia, Los Angeles
Produced by the Beach Boys
Mixed by Mark Linett
Remastered by Kevin Gray at Cohearent Audio
- Don't Go Near The Water
- Long Promised Road
- Take A Load Off Your Feet
- Disney Girls (1957)
- Student Demonstration Time
- Feel Flows
- Lookin' At Tomorrow (A Welfare Song)
- A Day In The Life Of A Tree
- 'Til I Die
- Surf's Up
1000 Recordings You Must Hear Before You Die - Ranked 217
Stereophile Records to Die For - 2013
"While the consensus deems Pet Sounds to be The Beach Boys' greatest achievement, I derive much more joy from this 1971 release. Issued when the band was considered so unhip as to be beyond redemption, it featured Bruce Johnston's heartbreakingly gorgeous 'Disney Girls (1957),' famously covered by Art Garfunkel, 'Long Promised Road,' 'Til I Die,' 'Feel Flows' and the luscious title track. Surf's Up restored the band's credibility, despite Brian Wilson not dominating the proceedings. It sounds equally glorious on SACD. It was recorded for surround sound, to be heard via a Dynaco Quadaptor. Pity Acoustic Sounds didn't issue that mix, too!" — Sound Quality = 91% - Ken Kessler, HiFi News, "Years Best" Yearbook 2017
« The Beach Boys' post-1966 catalog is littered with LPs that barely scraped the charts upon release but matured into solid fan favorites despite -- and occasionally, because of -- their many and varied eccentricities. Surf's Up could well be the definitive example, beginning with the cloying "Don't Go Near the Water" and ending a bare half-hour later with the baroque majesty of the title track (originally written in 1966). The album is a virtual laundry list of each uncommon intricacy that made the Beach Boys' forgotten decade such a bittersweet thrill -- the fluffy yet endearing pop (od)ditties of Brian Wilson, quasi-mystical white-boy soul from brother Carl, and the downright laughable songwriting on tracks charting Mike Love's devotion to Buddhism and Al Jardine's social/environmental concerns. Those songs are enjoyable enough, but the last three tracks are what make Surf's Up such a masterpiece. The first, "A Day in the Life of a Tree," is simultaneously one of Brian's most deeply touching and bizarre compositions; he is the narrator and object of the song (though not the vocalist; co-writer Jack Rieley lends a hand), lamenting his long life amid the pollution and grime of a city park while the somber tones of a pipe organ build atmosphere. The second, "'Til I Die," isn't the love song the title suggests; it's a haunting, fatalistic piece of pop surrealism that appeared to signal Brian's retirement from active life. The album closer, "Surf's Up," is a masterpiece of baroque psychedelia, probably the most compelling track from the SMiLE period. Carl gives a soulful performance despite the surreal wordplay, and Brian's coda is one of the most stirring moments in his catalog. Wrapped up in a mess of contradictions, Surf's Up defined the Beach Boys' tumultuous career better than any other album. » AllMusic Review by John Bush
"The original Artisan Sound mastering is masterful and if you have a clean one, you're all set. This reissue is not quite as transparent but the inner detail resolution is superior as is the bottom end. If I had to guess which album(s) were cut from 'best available' as opposed to master tapes I'd pick this one simply because the top end is not as open and airy. If you don't have an original you won't know you're missing something, and you are getting inner detail and bottom end weight the original lacks." — Michael Fremer, AnalogPlanet.com.
"While the consensus deems Pet Sounds to be The Beach Boys' greatest achievement, I derive much more joy from this 1971 release. Issued when the band was considered so unhip as to be beyond redemption, it featured Bruce Johnston's heartbreakingly gorgeous 'Disney Girls (1957),' famously covered by Art Garfunkel, 'Long Promised Road,' 'Till I Die,' 'Feel Flows' and the luscious title track. Surf's Up restored the band's credibility, despite Brian Wilson not dominating the proceedings. It sounds equally glorious on SACD. Audiophiles will note it was recorded for surround sound, to be heard via a Dynaco Quadaptor. Pity Acoustic Sounds didn't use that mix, too!" Ken Kessler, HiFi News, December 2016
"What I can say is that Kevin Gray has been able to extract every last bit of information from whatever tape is in the box, and present it in a way that is pleasing and natural to the ear. ... in my opinion, the Analogue Productions pressings are now THE definitive issue of each Beach Boys album, and will be my reference copies until if and when something better comes along — which may be never." — Lee Dempsey, Endless Summer Quarterly, Summer 2015 Edition
A musical legacy that began in Hawthorne, California and went on to conquer the world. Analogue Productions presents the ultimate pressings of 14 essential Beach Boys albums! Mastered by Kevin Gray, most from the original master tapes, and plated and pressed by Quality Record Pressings, the finest LP pressing facility in the world, these are awesome recordings to experience. And the look of each album befits its sonic superiority! Presented in "old school" Stoughton tip-on jackets, these time honored favorites shine brighter than the originals!
Worth noting on Surf's Up is Stephen Desper's engineering work — the entire album was mixed to a center channel quad matrix that he was developing at the time.
Surf's Up hit the Top 30 on its first release, reaching No. 29 on the Billboard LP charts — the highest chart placement the group had had since 1967. At the time of its release, Surf's Up was hailed by many as a comeback for The Beach Boys, who were beginning to attract raves for their live performances, including highly acclaimed sets at New York's legendary Carnegie Hall.
Carl Wilson makes solid contributions on Surf's Up with "Long Promised Road" and "Feel Flows," and the album also features stellar tracks by Al Jardine and Mike Love, as well as Bruce Johnston's most enduring composition, the gently nostalgic "Disney Girls (1957)," but the album's twin jewels are both from Brian Wilson — "Til I Die" and the title track — one of the centerpieces of the then-unreleased Smile (cowritten by lyricist Van Dyke Parks and here given that album's "Child Is Father to the Man" as a glorious coda.)
Surf's Up track "A Day in the Life of a Tree" is the first in a series of Brian's songs that close the album. It's simultaneously one of Brian Wilson's most deeply touching and unusual compositions; he is the narrator and object of the song (though not the vocalist; co-writer Jack Rieley lends a hand), lamenting his long life amid the pollution and grime of a city park while the somber tones of a pipe organ build atmosphere. "Til I Die," isn't the love song the title suggests; it's a haunting, fatalistic piece of pop surrealism that appeared to signal Brian's retirement from active life.