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Album Review

The Pluto Walkers — and their alter-ego companion El Futuro Sonidos — are the brainchild of guitarist Bob Irwin, who is better-known as the founder and producer of the esteemed reissue label Sundazed, an imprint that has spent much of its life preserving the exotic surf and instrumentals of the '60s, so it shouldn't come as a surprise that the group's 2013 debut, The Throwaway Age, is steeped in this stuff. What may come as a surprise is how enjoyable The Throwaway Age is, as it holds its own with many of its inspirations and often casts a wider stylistic berth, too. The cover art of a mockup of a fake B-movie from the late '60s signals a bit of the Pluto Walkers' intent: they're not chained to the beach ripping out echoing runs with their offset guitars; they're looking elsewhere, taking sitars on an open road, fuzzing up their six strings, and indulging in a bit of swinging bachelor pad sophistication. A large part of the success of The Throwaway Age lies in how Irwin and the Pluto Walkers fuse these disparate elements of '60s kitsch, creating an aural time machine that's thoroughly appealing as sheer sonics, but the songs also have nifty constructions themselves, neatly splitting the difference between rocking riffs and insistent melodies. Granted, you have to already be into all manners of SoCal '60s exotica — hot rods, drag races, exploitation movies, go-go dancers and, yes, surf — to appreciate what the Pluto Walkers pull off on The Throwaway Age, but if you're the kind of guy who says "Hey! I know who Bob Irwin is! I wonder what his band is like," this is a record you're bound to enjoy.

Customer Reviews

Fuzz-Filled Dreams & Sitar Things…

As a renowned producer and the driving force behind the seminal reissue label Sundazed Music, Bob Irwin has been responsible for bringing a dizzying amount of vintage instrumental rock ’n’ roll to fans around the globe. Now, as lead guitarist and composer of the Pluto Walkers, the lifelong guitar obsessive and walking encyclopedia of musical knowledge adds his own distinctive creative vision to the pantheon of effortlessly cool instrumental combos.
On the Pluto Walkers’ debut album The Throwaway Age, the multitalented foursome delivers a dazzling dose of scintillating surf/drag/sci-fi/exotica nuggets that are as imaginative as they are catchy, looking to the future while conjuring up the playful warmth of the ’50s and ’60s instrumental classics that originally captured Irwin’s imagination as a fan. Indeed, the Pluto Walkers pull off the tricky task of channeling their far-flung influences into music that’s fresh and original, merging insistent guitar hooks with all manner of inventive arrangements and ear-tickling sonic embellishments. The resulting album delivers a one-of-a-kind musical experience that’s effortlessly fresh and original, yet firmly rooted in the unpretentious musical values that Irwin has consistently championed in his work with Sundazed.
Behind The Throwaway Age’s snazzy faux-movie-soundtrack cover art, the Pluto Walkers’ ambitiously eclectic approach yields major musical riches in the dragstrip swagger of “Coffin Dragger,” the board-busting surf splash of “Diamondback,” the swinging sitar-jangle of “Fast Girl, Last Girl,” the triumphant biker-flick barrage of “Two-Timer” and the international intrigue of “Vindaloo.” Also featured on the album are four equally memorable tracks by the Pluto Walkers’ mysterious alter-ego outfit El Futuro Sonidos, who offer moody, lilting acoustic textures with a Latin touch and a tropical twist. Although their exact identities remain a closely guarded secret, it’s worth noting that the members of El Futuro Sonidos have never been seen in the same room as the Pluto Walkers.
Available both as a streamlined CD and a handsomely appointed 180-gram vinyl LP, The Throwaway Age is the perfect soundtrack for any space-age beach party, and the ideal accompaniment for your next interplanetary road trip.

The Throwaway Age, Bob Irwin and the Pluto Walkers
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Customer Ratings

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