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The Loggia playlist: Surfer Blood – Astro Coast (2010)

Surfer Blood – Astro Coast

Verdict: 4.5 out of 5 sharks approve

While Punxsutawney Phil claims that we still have 6 more weeks of winter to go, this freakishly warm weather keeps fooling me into thinking otherwise. Sandal season may be a long way off, but who says that we have to admit it? Personally, I’m going to be living in an eternal summer of denial until Spring Break finally arrives. Or then again, I could always just move to Florida. The quintessential Floridian band, Surfer Blood seem to live in a world of sunshine, sand, and surf wax—although I was surprised to learn that none of the members of Surfer Blood actually surf. To be fair, neither did the Beach Boys (with the exception of the late Dennis Wilson)—a band that Surfer Blood cites as a major influence. The band clearly embraces Surf Rock’s nautical theme with a sound that can be perfectly described as “floating vibes”—the title of Astro Coast’s opening song.

The rest of the album is equally impressive. Surfer Blood displays pure talent from the anthemic kick of “Swim” to the smooth, gliding chords of “Harmonix.” These guys clearly enjoy playing music and they’ve become quite good at it. Yet Surfer Blood never comes off like they’re flaunting their skill. They have way too much fun toying around in light-hearted numbers like “Twin Peaks” and in the unhurried yet gleefully rocking guitar on “Neighborhood Riffs”!

Still, John Paul Pitts has some surprisingly deep stuff to sing about for a guy who sounds like he’s waaay too chill to be dealing with life issues. Yet Pitts never misses a beat—and neither does Astro Coast. Surfer Blood always leave me with a good feeling; of warm weather, sun, and cool water. Sure, sometimes the waves get choppy (and sometimes, there are teeth!), but isn’t that all part of the experience? If this sounds kind of theatrical, I think that Surfer Blood would happily agree with you (just watch their video for “Floating Vibes”). I also feel that the start of a new semester can be a lot like that at times—especially when the weather sucks and The Campus Cough is doing its rounds. So far, Astro Coast has provided exactly the right kind of escapism that I need to get me through the winter doldrums.

The Highlights:
-“Floating Vibes”, “Harmonix”, “Swim”, and “Fast Jabroni”
-The record looks really cool, and comes on pink or blue marbled-vinyl

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