I marveled at the Sunshine Tomorrow set as much as anyone and had a great time hearing new (or at least previously buried) sounds. But at the end of it all, Wild Honey is still just a decent, far-too-slight album. Honestly the band should have apologized charging full price for the thing. And this coming from someone who hates bloated songs and albums.
Half to two-thirds of these songs are really top notch: "Wild Honey," "Darlin," "Let the Wind Blow," "Aren't You Glad," and "I'd Love Just Once to See You" in particular would be worthy of inclusion on any Beach Boys (or mid-late 60s) album.
It's a shame, though, to see so little real drumming in an album apparently meant as the group's RnB effort, to say nothing of the relative lack of harmonies from the best band in the history of pop's harmony singers. And returning to the criticism of length, I suppose by now it goes without saying when talking about this band that not only is it an unfortunate result, but an entirely unnecessary one considering what other songs they had available at the time.
Wild Honey [Capitol, 1967] It feels weird to call this a great record--it's so slight. But it's perfect and full of pleasure; it does what it sets out to do almost without a bad second (except for "Let the Wind Blow," each of the 11 tunes--total time: 23:54--ends before you wish it would). And what does it set out to do? To convey the troubled innocence of the Beach Boys through a time of attractive but perilous psychedelic sturm und drang. Its method is whimsy, candor, and carefully modulated amateurishness, all of which comes through as humor. Tell me, what other pop seer was inspired enough to cover a Stevie Wonder song in 1967? A+
Let the Wind Blow is one of my favorite tracks on the album, and IMO the most soulful song out of the bunch.
I see Wild Honey (the album) as somewhat of a concept album, the theme, of course, being R&B music done by a former surf and car pop group. It's perfectly executed....well, it falters a bit with How She Boogalooed It and then ends with the underwhelming Mama Says. But man, the rest of the album more than makes up for that. They certainly could have come back for a stronger ending with at least two more songs that were nearly "in the can". The Letter? Game of Love? Polish up Lonely Days by redoing the vocals and fleshing out a full tune? Yeah, sadly the ball got dropped at the very end. Reminds me of movies that are classic all the way through and then end abruptly, making you wonder if the producer ran out of money. "Really? It was going so good!!!!!"
lonelysummer: Shoot, i gave up on new music in the 90's.
Sept 18, 2021 2:18:38 GMT
Kapitan: Anyone want to kick off the next year's music to discuss? Pick anything except 1976, 1963, 1989, 2002, or 2010.
Sept 18, 2021 11:22:42 GMT
Kapitan: If not, I'll post a new one later today.
Sept 18, 2021 11:25:26 GMT
jk: Sounds good to me, Cap'n.
Sept 18, 2021 11:50:32 GMT
carllove: If you want to pick one today, I can do one Monday. Gotta start getting ready to power wash my deck this morning! Did get my thoughts in on 2010 this morning. Rough year!
Sept 18, 2021 13:04:24 GMT
carllove: Actually Kapitan, my husband is still sleeping, so I will choose a year this morning. It will be 1972.
Sept 18, 2021 13:14:07 GMT
B.E.: '63-72 - not just the best years for the Beach Boys but for popular music.
Sept 18, 2021 13:25:18 GMT
Kapitan: Great year for music!
Sept 18, 2021 14:34:33 GMT