Surf's Up is the 17th studio album by American rock band the Beach Boys, released August 30, 1971 on Brother/Reprise. It received largely favorable reviews and reached number 29 on the US record charts, becoming their highest-charting LP of new music in the US since 1967. In the UK, Surf's Up peaked at number 15, continuing a string of top 40 records that had not abated since 1965. The album's title and cover artwork (a painting based on the early 20th-century sculpture "End of the Trail") are an ironic, self-aware nod to the band's early surfing image. Originally titled Landlocked, the album took its name from the closing track "Surf's Up", a song originally intended for the group's unfinished album Smile. Most of Surf's Up was recorded from January to July 1971. In contrast to the previous LP Sunflower, Brian Wilson was not especially active in the production, which resulted in thinner vocal arrangements. Lyrically, Surf's Up addresses environmental, social, and health concerns more than the group's previous releases. This was at the behest of newly recruited co-manager Jack Rieley, who strove to revamp the group's image and restore their public reputation following the dismal reception to their recent albums and tours. His initiatives included a promotional campaign with the tagline "it's now safe to listen to the Beach Boys" and the appointment of Carl Wilson as the band's official leader. The record also included Carl's first major song contributions: "Long Promised Road" and "Feel Flows". Two singles were issued in the US: "Long Promised Road" and "Surf's Up". Only the former charted, when it was reissued with the B-side "Til I Die" later in the year, peaking at number 89. In 1993, Surf's Up was ranked number 46 in NME's list of the "Top 100 Albums" in history. In 2000, it ranked number 230 in Colin Larkin's All Time Top 1000 Albums. As of 2021, it is ranked as the 761st highest rated album of all time on Acclaimed Music. Session highlights, outtakes, and alternate mixes from the album were collected for the 2021 compilation Feel Flows.Wikipedia
Enjoyed a lot. Environmentalist, forward-thinking rock. I love the whole album top to bottom, only thing that I found weird was the song Take a Load Off Your Feet, but other than that everything was top notch. Disney Girls, Student Demonstration Time, and Long Promised Road are my favorite, Will revisit, and other than Take A load off your Feet I loved it top to bottom, even with weird songs like A Day in the life of a tree, 8/8.
This was not surfin USA. Man they were special.
I must admit to have never even heard of this album. The tone of the album artwork seemed like such a departure from the beach boys I’m familiar with. I had to double check and see whether the website was using the right image. I can report this album is fantastic. How it’s been hidden from me for so long remains a mystery.
You see "Beach Boys," you see "Surf's Up," and you think you know what you're getting into, only for Brian Wilson to treat the title drop at the tail end of the record like some sort of cruel punchline playing on your expectations. On one hand, it feels like they're punching above their weight class with the heavier subject matter—a lot of the songs have a message, but lack nuance ("I know we're all fed up with useless wars and racial strife / but next time there's a riot, well, you best stay out of sight"). On the other, I kind of appreciate the effort, since it's a bit more interesting than the album I pictured in my head, and the sounds are often pleasant, even borderline beautiful on side two. I can definitely see why the Beach Boys have the reputation they do amongst music critics, but I had to push past cheesy environmentalism and songs about washing your feet to get there. Key Tracks: Disney Girls (1957), Feel Flows, 'Til I Die
The kind of weird and soulful record you need to listen to hear once per annum to remind yourself the hippie dream wasn't always just another way to shill the consumer. Eccentric, blissful, goofy. And political as fuck.
Nice, I really liked it. It sound so dark and sweet at the same time
*deletes student demonstration time* Ahhh a perfect album
What on earth is this album supposed to be
A weirdly, subtly sinister Beach Boys record. The songs are, I hesitate to use the word but, solid, just weird in certain spots ("Student Demonstration Day" sticks out the most, super cheery but very, very dark). Not a record I plan on really revisiting. Favorite track: "Disney Girls"
4.5 | Sobre los Beach Boys se podría decir mucho, basta decir que son mucho más de lo que la gente piensa como música surf de fiesta playera y 5 monitos con camisas iguales cantando con sonrisota. Este disco al parecer es el último de ese periodo de muchísima creatividad y propuesta, tras la apatía de Brian Wilson la banda seguiría intentando lograr recuperar terreno pero es un hecho que la mente creativa y gran parte del talento siempre fue él. Así queda un disco medio raro pero bueno, muy bueno he de decir pero con puntos muy extraños. Puedo empezar por los puntos bajos, la canción Student Demonstration Time es, a mi parecer el punto más bajo del disco, un rocanrol realmente básico tal cual copiado y pegado de lo que ya para ese entonces era un estándar del género, sin cambiarle nada, metiendo unos ruidos mal hechos y una sirena que parece de patrulla de juguete, distorsión mal nivelada y una letra tremendamente patética que parece parodia de sí misma diciendo "muchachos estudiantes mejor no se rebelen no hagan demostraciones," pareciera que como en este disco todos tuvieron chance de hacer una canción el primo sin talento pues también debe de tener chance y aquí esta su contribución (no es exageración Mike Love es primo de sangre y la verdad es que su contribución normal era básicamente tocar el pandero y estar de bulto), quizá su mensaje era tratar de hablar sobre lo peligroso de la época para un estudiante, no se si se creía Neil Young pero falló catastróficamente en el intento, la letra es burda y nomas mal escribir letras sobre una canción de hace 15 años para mí no cuenta. Vamos al segundo tope, Al Jardin quien cree que tiene todo el sentido hacer una canción sobre los pies, musicalmente no es terrible, solo siento que para el disco termina sintiéndose como música infantil; si bien musicalmente no ofende, hasta podría decir a mí me suena como a algo de Dr. Demento que me gusta mucho, pero aquí cae como balde de agua sin sentido con su sonido tipo naif y su exageración en efectos graciosos que estorban, líricamente es... sobre pies, hizo una canción sobre los pies porque la canción Hair estaba de moda... Hair... que habla sobre todo un movimiento social y lo que fue volcar estructuras sociales a través de el estilo propio y romper estereotipos de género y actitud que tenían cientos de años... y Al Jardin lo que toma de eso es "Bueno... si hicieron sobre el cabello yo hago sobre... ¡los pies!." El resto del disco en general muchísimo mejor, se siente como si fuera sobre una nostalgia de algo que se te está escapando de entre los dedos, desde la ironía de variedad de lecturas que le puede dar uno al título, la manera en que la primera canción puede sonar medio chistosa y sin sentido pero cuando se reflexiona la letra de ella y la última canción se vuelve mucho más sombría. La dulzura y clásico de Disney Girls. La psicodelia y letra sin sentido de Feel Flows pero con una producción y orquestación espectacular termina como quizá de las mejores canciones de pop progresivo que he escuchado. El cierre del disco, es lo que lo eleva a clásico, esas tres canciones de Brian Wilson son espectaculares (incluso si una es sobre un arbolito), el órgano de iglesia, el melotrón y la caja de mono cilindrero, el fraseo simple y los coros punteados... nadie hacía música así, es de esas composiciones que equiparan y en varios sentidos superan cualquiera de los experimentos sonoros de los Beatles. Till I Die como si trajera de vuelta la base del sonido surf de inicios del grupo y la deshiciera por completo, reacomodara en algo totalmente depresivo añorante con una de sus mejores letras mostrando como el surf rock puede dar todas esas emociones y sensaciones extrañas que te puede dar el solo escuchar las olas y como si dijera "aquí ya acabó la fiesta solo está el mar pegando en las rocas." Surfs Up cerrando de nuevo con arreglos y música únicos en una canción que de cierto modo tardó cinco años en terminar. Nada más que decir, excelente disco con una canción mala y otra demasiado extraña, a ratos se nota demasiado la variedad de escritores y lo fragmentado de la banda, pero es bastante disfrutable y termina en un cierre grande. Parece que este fue el último "gran" disco de los Beach Boys y si así fuera, se fueron con un excelente destello antes de su decadencia.
Very nice stuff from the boys, consistent theming and excellent sound, but whoever thought that "Take a Load Off Your Feet" should make the final cut needs to be fired lol
Very much not what I was expecting from the Beach Boys, as somebody who knows almost nothing about them. Excellent, though.
Yeah I mean it’s the fucking beach boys. You get what you pay for.
You gotta feel sorry for these guys. They had that snappy, surfy early sixties sound that defined them and brought California to the world. Then the music scene changed and they tried to be more experimental and serious, but I think their original fans wanted to hear Surfin' US and other fans in the 70s, like me, refused to listen to this because it's the Beach Boys and are asking "what's the point?"
Qué buen disco. Sabía poco o casi nada acerca de los Beach Boys; ubicaba las rolas obvias con tono surf y sus tristes intentos en épocas más recientes de explotar esa nostalgia, pero no tenía noción de todo lo que pasó en medio y de todos los cambios musicales que tuvieron. De este disco en especial me gusta que ahondan de hecho casi nada en esa onda surf (sin dejarla de lado) y tampoco sobreproducen sus vocales. Por lo que leí, esto viene por la ausencia de Brian Wilson en la producción, y de hecho veo que las rolas que más me gustaron (Long Promised Road y Student Demonstration) no son de él.
I really enjoyed listening to this album. It was very moving. Besides Surf's Up, the best realized song on this album is Disney Girls (1957).
Awesome mix, some of the best of the beach boys
Concept album? Not yet! But soon...
No i plazowe chlopaki sie wylosowaly, dosc troche ich albumikow przesluchalem i sa dla mnie jak hamerykanski brat blizniak beatelsow, ktory caly czas pozostaje w ich cieniu, podobna ewolucja bojsbendowego grania popowego do powazniejszych plyt juz bardziej typowo rokowych, ciekawa sprawa jest takze to, ze banda byla zalozona przez 3 braci Wilsonowych, ich kuzyna Mika i niepowiazanych krwia Ala i Brucea, wiec dosc rodzinne granie, surfs up, siedemnasty albumik studyjny, jest juz jednym z tego okresu tworczosci, gdzie cukrowe tracki ustepuja temata majacym na celu uswiadomienie sluchacza w konkretnej sprawie, a nie tylko cieszyc ucho, wiec uslyszymy tutaj songi z perspektywy fabryki tlenu, o akwenach, dziury w ziemi, biedaka bezdrobtnego, a to wszystko w rozbudowanych kompozycjach lirycznych, ktore potrafia zamienic song o drzewie w prawdziwy dramat, drwic z wlasnych korzeni surfowego popu, prawiac o poszanowaniu wody, czy o tak prozaicznych rzeczach jak zeby nie byc grubasem i dbac o zdrowie, ale nie sama strona liryczna stoi albumik, bo jednak beach boye sa znane przedewszystkim z tego co jak wygladala produkcja ich materialu, bo sami byli sobie panami produkcji, wiec albumiki wygladly tak jaki mieli koncept, wiec pisanie tutaj o instrumentalach nie ma calkowicie sensu, gdzie tak jak w tracku long promised road cala kompozycja zostala stworzona w calosci przez Carla Wilsona, liryka, instrumenty produkcja, az ciezko w to wierzyc, ze w taki sposob moglby powstawac tak zlozone kawalki, kolejnym punktem wartym uwagi jest uzycie syntezatorow w dosc innowacyjny sposob na feel flows, ostatnim elementem ktory stanowi o tym ze chlopaki z plazy to chlopaki z plazy jest wykorzystanie chorkowania i overduba do tworzenia melodii, taki poziom zgrania bandowego, to cos rzadkiego do uslyszenia, ciezko wybrac cos na dodanie plejkowe, bo takie albumy staram sie sluchac od poczatku do konca, ale gdybym mial cos dodac to chyba tytulowy surfs up, ktory swoja kompozycja przypomina mini opere z tymi ultra wysokimi wokalami i podzialem na trzy czesci 4 minutowego kawalka, bo sam albumik ma tylko 33 minuty, to ciezko znalezc tam jakiekolwiek miejsce ktore mialoby byc zapychaczem, wiec zakonczyc epicka operowa ballada jest jak najbardziej na miejscu, zazwyczaj taki kawalek bylby raczej openingiem
My fav Beach Boys album, I know this is a controvercial take but something about these batch of songs just resonate so hard with me.
I’ve been waiting for some Beach Boys music, as I have only been exposed to their greatest hits and was pretty sure I was missing out on something. I had no idea how true that was... “Don’t Go Near The Water” seemed like a strange opening for an album entitled SURF’S UP by The Beach Boys. But I loved the song. It is heartbreaking how applicable it is 50 years later. I instantly loved “Long Promised Road” with its quiet verses and rocking choruses. The bridge was so beautiful. Couple that with the deep and complex lyrics... such an impressive song. “Take a Load Off Your Feet” is really wild! Strange as it starts off talking about wrinkly feet. “Take good care of your feet, Pete”. Bizarre sound effects abound in this song, including car horns, clanking plates. I loved it! I also loved this version of “Disney Girls (1957)”. Really like the three-syllable treatment of ‘Disney’. I have always loved this song but did a disservice to myself by not seeking out this original. There is so much more dimension in this performance than the covers I've heard. “Student Demonstration Time” has a unique feel but is very well done and catchy - a bit surprising since it is documenting student riots and police shootings. The synthesizer siren is pretty cool - quite a song. "Feel Flows" is so unique and beautiful. "Unfolding enveloping missiles of soul recall senses sadly". The complicated lyrics along with the sort of weird backward overdubbing makes for a really psychedelic while still unmistakably The Beach Boys. I love this song. "Lookin' At Tomorrow (A Welfare Song)" is so applicable today it disturbs me to think of how little progress our world has made despite the technical revolutions of the last 5 decades. Really incredible. "A Day in The Life of a Tree" contrasts dramatically to something like "Feel Flows." This elegiac song starts off an you might not suspect it was The Beach Boys. But as the organ swells those unmistakable harmonies join in and the song begins to soar. Another really incredible song. "'Til I Die" is really a beautiful and haunting song that is such a prime example of the happy/sad currents underlying the Beach Boys music. "Surf's Up" is an epic ending to the album that left me stunned. Haunting. The song craft on SURF'S UP is beyond belief. The songs' deep environmental, personal and sociological themes are still sharp and even more pertinent today. I've already listened to this 5 times and every time I get more out of each song. This is one incredible album that has completely changed how I think about The Beach Boys.
Holy holy, what an absolute gem of an album. Can't believe I've never heard it. The album starts with The Beach Boys telling me NOT to go near the water. What? This was unexpected. To be honest, this song is a little cheeseball and a bit too on the nose. It could've been (maybe was) a TV ad for water conservation. But other than the surprising message, this sounds like a Beach Boys song. Long Promised Road is a beautiful, beautiful pop song. I just love it. Can't believe it wasn't a bigger hit. Take a Load Off Your Feet is catchy and ridiculous. I knew Captain & Tennille's cover of Disney Girls but had no idea it was a cover of a Beach Boys song. This is another really lovely pop song with an achingly exquisite melody sung so beautifully by Bruce Johnston. When he sings "oh" in the chorus, it goes straight to my heart. I love this one. From that we go straight to a heavy blues riff and some sirens for Student Demonstration Time. This has some of the best lyrics including, "The pen is mightier than the sword, but no match for a gun." Fuck. Feel Flows definitely sounds like the Beach Boys singing but doesn't sound like a Beach Boys song. The instrumental section is prog rock with flutes and all. This is another one that I love. I don't know what to say about Lookin' At Tomorrow. I just don't. A Day in the Life of a Tree is from the p.o.v. of said tree accompanied by a sad carnival calliope. Again, Til I Die and Surf's Up sure sound like the Beach Boys singing but they are eerie and haunting and the opposite of the carefree surfing songs I've come to expect from these guys. They're stunning. I am so grateful to have been introduced to this precious piece of work. We've only been together, this album and I, for about 24 hours but already we are in a pretty serious relationship that I think is going to last for quite some time.
tender, ecological, elegies for kindness and gentleness
Probably the nearest the Beach Boys came to making a truly psychedelic album, this is simply masterful. The lyrics are more thoughtful than previously expected and cover some ecological and political themes. The usual vocal harmonies are there of course, plus there are some interesting musical textures. It's disappointing that no Dennis Wilson tracks were included as his songs were to the highlights on the previous Sunflower album. The mood is generally quite mellow with the raucous 'Student Demonstration Time' placed at the end of side one to wake you up after the gently nostalgic 'Disney Girls'. Highlights include 'Don't Go Near The Water', 'Feel Flows', 'Til I Die and the masterful title track. I also have soft spot for the humorous 'Take Good Care of Your Feet'.
it was so cool hearing beach boys' political side! i loved it!
One of the better no-Brian albums, in part because it uses so much Smile material. But it also has one of my favourite Beach Boys tracks ever, Disney Girls, evokes a great sense of nostalgia while also critiquing the very same feeling. It does also have Student Demonstration March which is fucking awful sooooo
This is fun and makes me smile one big smile!!
I love it
This album was so good! I thoroughly enjoyed all of it, even if some of the tracks were a bit strange.
I didn’t know this album at all. My knowledge of the Beach Boys begins and ends with Pet Sounds. I really liked this album- it seemed so familiar. I can totally hear where Belle and Sebastian get their sound. Those Harmonies…
not a bad song on this album. didn't think i'd enjoy it but i loved it Long Promised Road #1 Disney Girls and Surf's Up #2 Take A Load Off Your Feet #3 A Day In The Life Of A Tree i know my #2 and #3 are controversial but they're great lol
Environmental beach boys
Great Album. Great songs.
Great tunes! My favourite is the Long Promised Road, but all of the songs was a great surprise and experience. A bit Beatles-ish, but in a good amount. Saved to favourites.
Beach Boys are really hit and miss for me. I love them, or I hate them. This was a good one.
I thought the Beach Boys were little more than just singing about the ocean and relaxing on the beach, not that there's anything wrong with that, but boy did this album prove me wrong. There's an actual message behind these lyrics, and, without being too preachy, it nails the balance between message and good music. The vocals might be a bit different than usual when one thinks of the Beach Boys, but they are still bright and wonderful. This album shows that the Beach Boys aren't just a one-note band, and that they can branch out and make meaningful music.
Love this album, probably the last great beach boys album. Don’t go near the water and long promised road are great, take a load off your feet is fun. Disney girls is nice and sweet. Student demonstration time was probably my least favorite, just felt nothing like the rest of the album and was pretty bland. A day in the life of a tree and ‘til I die are wonderful. My favorite song is probably surfs up, the lyrics and feel of it are mystical.
This was so cool and way ahead of its time. I listen to indie music now that has an eerily similar sound.
Given what I have heard from the Beach Boys and the title of the album, this was not what I expected.
so diferent, beatifull!
I hear some of my favorite bands in here (MGMT, Foxygen, Beach House). I've always gravitated to Pet Sounds, but this album is spectacular with its psychedelic beachy sounds. This is when this 1001 challenge pays off - I'll be listening to this on repeat.
Last beach boys album was last week also on tuesday
j’ai trouvé ça super
kann man gut hören
Song highlights: Don't Go Near The Water, Long Promised Road, Feel Flows, Surf's Up
OK, I was so wrong to think the beach boys as a not as good version of the beatles. I absolutely love this album.
Its a very imperfect album. BUT, straight up, has some of my favorite songs of all time.
Closer to a 3.7
1971. Key Songs: Don't Go Near The Water, 'Til I Die, Lookin' At Tomorrow
Relaxing listen. Feel Flows is definitely the stand out track here
A tale of two sides. They stuck the experiments that didn't work on Side 1 and the ones that did on Side 2. It's almost as if you can hear them maturing as the album goes on. I doubt that was the intent, but it's my headcanon. Best track: Feel Flows
01/10/2020 Sat in room listening in the morning, WiFi in the block was down. Excellent album and showed me a side of The Beach Boys I was unaware of. Grew up listening to them in the car but had no idea they had such a strong 'non-commercial' side to them. Almost a 5.
very different fr9m their earlier works
surprised me, interesting listen all the way through. Have never heard this side of the beach boys but i like it a lot.
I was surprised how much I loved this album!
good album, is it a concept album tho?
Expected all the over played Beach Boy stuff. Got something that I would listen to again if I were in the mood. Very pleasant.
Beach boys fare
No me esperaba algo tan diferente. Es único y bastante experimental a mi parecer pero me agradó mucho Realmente pensé que solo se habían dedicado a hacer música sobre olas, arena, sol y malteadas
This album really surprised me. Maybe better than Pet Sounds. It's got a variety of sounds and themes, but they somehow all flow. Not repetitive. Quick and to the point. Definitely heavier than Pet Sounds and early Beach Boys.
A deliberately weird Beach Boys album - yeah, I liked it! Fave track - well, "Surf's Up" sounded most classically Beach Boys, but I think I'm gonna go with "Student Demonstration Time" as being the most unexpected!
Bängeri Skön classical rock. Jännä att jag inte har hört de här låtarna då många av dem är bättre än deras andra kända biisin
I was pleasantly surprised by this album. It was more subdued than I expected from The Beach Boys, and had interesting melodies and lyrics.
Not the normal Beach Boys songs I was used to, I enjoyed this one.
Wow, nothing at all like I expected when I saw that the album of the day was a Beach Boys album. Melancholy and socially critical. These songs "slap", as the kids say. Gone are the days of goofy surfing lyrics and "Rah rah rah be true to your school". I like the double meaning of the album title.
Only having heard their hits I didnt know that they did a bit more folkish stuff as well.
8/10 bonito uwu. PD. Su portada metalera me dio miedo
I had never wondered what The Beach Boys did between Pet Sounds and Kokomo and yet here is this album. It’s a bit heavy-handed and strange but I like Disney Girls and it’s short. 7
Cool and fun different sounds than I expected, Great cruising music.
Intriguing. Listen again
On the whole very enjoyable although I thought the quality between songs was varied.
Thoroughly enjoyed it. My bias for chill music is showing but I liked this way better than their more upbeat stuff. High 8.
I was sceptical of 70s beach boys but this is excellent.
Nice ironic mix of counterculture and the poppier motifs at the time. Short and sweet listen.
Great album. Great songwriting and harmonies. One that I own.
Surprised that this was the Beach Boys! Liked it!
A chill classic. Look after your feet.
I was not expecting this from the Beach Boys at all. It's complex, deals with themes of global pollution and protest, and dips into genres I would have never thought they would go for. I like this a lot. Favorite song: Long Promised Road
A great, somber, thoughtful, well-produced beautiful album...with fucking “Student Demonstration Time” right in the middle of it 🙄
Brian Wilson at his quirkiest.
8. The riot and jaws tracks were the best. Weirdly sounds a bit dated tho
Was not expecting these type of darker songs from The Beach Boys. Very enjoyable.
Some good psychedelic pop. "Student Demonstration Time" was really good.
No hay mucha playa, pero está chulísimo! Me ha sorprendido bastante, no se parece en nada a otras cosas que he escuchado de ellos
not bad at all
-Pretty solid album overall, but the second half was kind of boring -"Student Demonstration Time" was by far the best song
Donkerdere muziek dan wat ik ken van The Beach Boys, al deed de hoes dat ook al vermoeden. Het is af en toe wel een traag album, maar de 40 jaar oude teksten zijn nog altijd brandend actueel