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Flight of the Surf Guitar

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Customer Reviews

In the shadow of The Shadows, but still top flight

This is pretty much the same incarnation of the Australian surf rock group which gave us the classic Bombora in 1963 (1963!). Flight of the Surf Guitar is a rock-solid effort featuring an exacting, propulsive rhythm section and soaring, stinging and snarling guitars.
The uptempo numbers (including a dynamic and thundering remake of Bombora) are among the best that contemporary surf rock has to offer. They thump, they skyrocket, and they make you just wanna dance. This band also has a sense of humor. Freakout is a melodic inversion of the Surfaris' Wipeout, while Bondi James is an upside-down version of the original James Bond Theme (which intentionally used a surf guitar, by the way).
It's with the slower songs that the Atlantics really glow, though. The very self-aware In The Shadows repays a debt, and could as well be by Hank Marvin and The Shadows themselves. The solo guitar tone is not as completely rounded as Hank Marvin's, but so what? No-one else's is, either, and it's close enough to rate five stars. So, too, do the lovely Dawn Patrol and Night Star (after the Shadows' Blue Star, I suppose).
Don't be misled by the drab, dated album cover. These guys deserve bold, splashy colors. From the moment you hear the thudding surf-boogie of the opening title song, you know you've got something extraordinary.
If I had to pick an intro to surf rock, this would be the one. It's not just for surf rock junkies. It's clean, strong guitar music with a riveting backbeat, and lead guitarist Martin Cilia is a certifiable ace.
BTW, anyone wondering why a band from a country lodged securely in the Pacific would call themselves The Atlantics might be interested in knowing that they took their name from a fuel corporation.


Formed: Australia

Genre: Rock

Years Active: '60s, '70s

One of the greatest instrumental surf groups did not even hail from America. The Atlantics, despite their name, were an Australian combo who not only emulated the sound of California surf music, but ranked among its very best practitioners. Featuring a reverb-heavy, extremely "wet" sound, the Atlantics attacked original material, standards, and movie themes with a nervy blend of precision and over-the-top intensity. As in Dick Dale's music, touches of Middle Eastern influences can be detected in...
Full bio
Flight of the Surf Guitar, The Atlantics
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  • $9.99
  • Genres: Rock, Music, Pop, Surf
  • Released: Apr 26, 2001

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