Wednesday, December 20, 2023

The 25 Bargain Buys of Xmas: Day 20

Much of my calendar year, every year, is spent sifting through record store bargain bins, estate sales, etc. and digging into the acquisitions. I win some and lose some, but I never write about it on AuxOut even though it accounts for a huge portion of my listening and discovery. In honor of the season of presents, I am celebrating some of the gifts bestowed upon me by the record gods during 2023.

The Beach Boys - Holland LP $3. 
Holland, the last great Beach Boys LP as far as I can tell, is not one to miss. First, let's get the bad out of the way. Blondie Chaplin sings two songs which aren't that good, they sound like The Beach Boys chasing the contemporary early 70s sound, and the one thing The Beach Boys did just about better than any mainstream act was never chase trends. Now that I've slung my arrows, I can state in good conscience that the rest of the record is stellar. "Steamboat" is such a cool, narcotic trudge Total poptone trail blazer. The three-song "California Saga" is a classic Beach Boys concept triptych. And, goddamn, "The Trader" belongs in the pantheon of the very best Beach Boys songs. Think of your favorite Beach Boys song right now, there's an 85% chance "The Trader" is better than it. The second movement is perfection. The pinnacle of Carl's contributions. Go Carl!

A playlist of tunes from each of the records I wrote about, I'll add a new song each day:

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