Surfer Blood’s “Astro Coast”

“If you listen to West Palm Beach natives Surfer Blood with an overly critical ear, you aren’t seeing the forest for the trees.” -Lindsey Whitefield

Luke Goddard

out of 10

Surfer Blood
Astro Coast
January 19, 2010
Kanine Records

If you listen to West Palm Beach natives Surfer Blood with an overly critical ear, you aren’t seeing the forest for the trees. Surfer Blood’s music is less about the pieces that make up the composition and more about the whole, and the whole is delightfully kitsch. Layers of guitar produce a surreal soundtrack. There exists a definite and undeniable surf rock vibe to Astro Coast, but darker, and disorienting. The songs on the album are both relentlessly indie-rock catchy and at the same time I find them elusive…like I said, if I’m merely singing the lyrics to myself I’ve missed the point.

Though in other reviews I have read on the band “Swim” seems to be the gold-star winning track, my must-listens are the album opener “Floating Vibes,” “Harmonix,” “Twin Peaks,” and the slightly more Roadhouse-worthy (you’re welcome, David Lynch fans) “Slow Jabroni.”

And wait, can we talk about “Neighborhood Riffs” for a second? A little instrumental interlude? It was an unexpected and welcome point on the album.

I am greatly interested to see where Surfer Blood goes from Astro Coast if they do continue to make music together, and I hope that direction is a further exploration of the subtle eccentricities that made this album a success.