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Beach Boys Edinburgh Concert Review - Edinburgh Evening News

I posted on this subject previously but the link I mentioned appears to be out of date. Here it is below folks!

CALIFORNIAN SMILES: The Beach Boys kept a packed Playhouse entertained for three hours

Published Date: 16 May 2008
The Beach Boys ****
Edinburgh Playhouse
AMERICA'S band, as they became known, were always welcomed on these shores, and never more so than last night at the Playhouse.

With a mixture of old and young fans, clearly including long-time aficionados as well as more recent converts, every song the band played in their almost three-hour set was lapped up eagerly.

The Beach Boys could make a blizzard feel sunny and warm with their infectious melodies and ultra-tight vocal harmonies. Blending rock and roll, surf music and straight pop, they defined the sound of the 60s for millions of music lovers all over the world who'd never even dreamed of surfing or cruising around in a "little deuce coupe", whatever that might have been.

Several decades on, only two members from that golden era remain in the band: Bruce Johnston and founder member, Mike Love. Guitarist Dave Marks is a long-time collaborator, but the rest of the Boys are fleshed out with some very capable musicians and, more importantly, singers.

The tradition has even been kept within the family – Mike Love's son, Christian takes guitar and lead vocal on several songs.

The band's long and colourful story needs a book to do it justice, but the Beach Boys' music speaks for itself. Opening with the classic Do It Again, the octet powered through a host of joyful surfing and cruising songs about loving women, cars, California and life in general.

Playing occasional keyboard and adding that all-important Beach Boy voice, Johnston blew kisses at the ladies in the crowd, waving at them as the show progressed.

A huge roar greeted the opening chords of Surfin' USA, which saw the crowd dancing in their seats and the aisles, and was followed by an almighty cheer. Bassist Randell Kirsch showed off an amazing falsetto voice on When I Grow Up To Be A Man, among many other songs during the marathon performance and was given several ovations for his efforts.

Tracks like You're So Good To Me and Darlin' kept the crowd on their feet, while the anthemic I Get Around had the audience singing at the top of their voices.

After the interval, Sloop John B made sure the crowd had plenty of singing practice and California Dreamin' cemented the deal. An acoustic section cooled things down for a while, but Kokomo got the tempo up once again.

Most bands reckon their drummer is the "hardest working" in the business. John Cowsill was definitely a serious contender for the title from his performance on Cotton Fields alone. Singing with a powerful tenor voice while pounding away on his kit, he added extra oomph to every song he tackled.

A long run of hits closed the show, including Wouldn't It Be Nice and Barbara Ann, which featured two girls from the crowd dancing with the band. The first encore was the inevitable and long-awaited Good Vibrations, which earned them the longest and loudest roar of the night.

By the end, almost the entire audience was on its feet clapping and cheering. The band summed up the entire evening, and explained what gave them the stamina with their final song, Fun, Fun, Fun. No arguments there.