Episode 27: The Beach Boys

Beach Boys
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Can you believe we’ve been trapped on this island nearly half a year, and never once discussed the beach or its titular boys? Well it’s about damn time we rectified that. So, with the help of return castaway/bearded bundle of joy Andy McAlpine, we’re going to take on one of the most legendary discographies we’ve yet encountered—The Beach Boys. The weird and wild world of the Wilson brothers is full of classics and clunkers, and on this episode we’re running the gamut of both, with a selection of albums ranging from the pure pop pleasures of The Beach Boys Today! to the lo-fi depths of Smiley Smile. In the process, we learn a lot about the glossed over depths of this band, the joys of life before and after Pet Sounds, and, of course, the epic heights of “Bull Session with ‘Big Daddy'”. Also: the world’s greatest box set, food party gender dynamics, and the perks of eating John Stamos.

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B-Side: Dennis Wilson

Dennis Wilson
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In preparation for the sunny onslaught of our upcoming Beach Boys episode, we take a moment to discuss the troubled, oft-ignored beach brother — Dennis Wilson. Responsible for the surf vibes that permeated their early albums, the hard living beach bum of the family released the first solo album of the group, Pacific Ocean Blue, and was working on another (Bambu) when he tragically died in 1983. We’re talking about both today, as we examine these flawed yet fascinating tracks, shot through with a darkness and pathos that the Beach Boys only hinted at. It’s a brief episode about one man’s personal dissolution, although we somehow still find time to take jabs at the second best drummer in Foo Fighters. Also: suffocating prospectors, Andrew’s empty tummy, and the puzzling state of the Depeche Mode fandom.

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