Q - 5/01, p.1294 stars out of 5
- "...These records are as unvaried as brilliance can be, but not one song here will make anyone unhappy..."
2 LPs on 1 CD: SURFER GIRL (1963)/SHUT DOWN, VOL. 2 (1964).
The Beach Boys: Brian Wilson, Dennis Wilson, Carl Wilson, Mike Love, Dave Marks, Al Jardine.
Producer: Brian Wilson.
Reissue producer: Mark Linett.
Recorded at Western Studios & RCA Studios, Hollywood, California between June 12, 1963 & February 20, 1964.
Originally released on Capitol (1981/2027).
Includes liner notes by Mark Linett, David Leaf & Brian Wilson.
Digitally remastered using HDCD technology.
Audio Mixer: Mark Linett.
Liner Note Author: David Leaf.
Recording information: RCA Studios, Hollywood, CA; Western Studios, Hollywood, CA.
SURFER GIRL was the first Beach Boys album to credit Brian Wilson as producer, and it propelled the band away from their simple surf band origins into the realm of classic pop. The opening, "Surfer Girl," remains a transcendent moment in '60s pop, while the stunningly beautiful "In My Room" is an obvious forerunner to the later classic song cycle of PET SOUNDS. It's an anomaly here, however; the majority of the album hews pretty close to the Beach Boys' surfer roots, albeit with more sophisticated arrangements and more confident performances than their previous efforts.
SHUT DOWN VOLUME 2 contains at least three classics: the breezy "Fun Fun Fun," the achingly pretty "Don't Worry Baby" and "The Warmth of the Sun," which was penned the day after the Kennedy assassination, and which, though it's ostensibly a love ballad, has a strong sense of loss, sadness, and resolve. This set also contains an alternate version of "Fun, Fun, Fun" and, improbably, a German version of "In My Room" that definitively answers the question: "Why are there no German surf bands?".