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The Slider
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Postby The Slider » 23 Aug 2005, 00:11

Quite honestly, as much as I enjoy Smile, I do not see many barriers being broken musically.
It is a rich old stew, but it isn't really pushing any envelopes that haven't already been pushed - even by rancid old dullards like The Byrds.

They started out as followers of the Beach Boys, but the Americana aspect of Smile comes at least as contemporaneous if not a bit behind The Byrds' explorations in that direction.
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Postby The Modernist » 23 Aug 2005, 00:17

Frimleygreener.

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Postby Tonto Papadopoulos » 23 Aug 2005, 00:20

The Slider wrote:McCartney was streets ahead.
He found Brian an inspiration - something to push him harder.
Brian on the other hand found Mccartney an unreachable goal.


i wonder what would have happened were wilson in the beatles and mccartney a member of the beach boys. what wilson was doing on his own was setting a benchmark for - for fuck's sake - the beatles to aspire to. not bad, really. certainly, to say that mccartney was streets ahead is quite laughable. you know, i'm sure even macca would agree with me on this one.

My guess is that is partly what sent him over the edge.


i'm sure it was a factor - but it really has no relevance to the discussion at hand, does it?
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Postby The Modernist » 23 Aug 2005, 00:22

TheBoyGiraffe wrote:
The Slider wrote:McCartney was streets ahead.
He found Brian an inspiration - something to push him harder.
Brian on the other hand found Mccartney an unreachable goal.


i wonder what would have happened were wilson in the beatles and mccartney a member of the beach boys. what wilson was doing on his own was setting a benchmark for - for fuck's sake - the beatles to aspire to. not bad, really. certainly, to say that mccartney was streets ahead is quite laughable. you know, i'm sure even macca would agree with me on this one.

My guess is that is partly what sent him over the edge.


i'm sure it was a factor - but it really has no relevance to the discussion at hand, does it?



I've yet to hear McCartney compose anything as simultaneously moving and sophisticated as Surf's Up.

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Postby Tonto Papadopoulos » 23 Aug 2005, 00:32

The Slider wrote: I don't see where he had to go.
It wasn't as though he was stopped from producing whatever he chose to pour out like poor old Syd was - by actually being mad.


going back to what you said before (sorry), who are we to tell where he would have gone? if he'd lost it after pet sounds we'd never have the imagination to predict "good vibrations" or "heroes and villains" - two of the most show-stoppingly greatest singles in the history of pop and both from a guy in his mid-twenties. who knows what he could have achieved?

i'm actually not somebody who worships brian wilson blindly and hangs onto his every recording (indeed, even though i'm a beach boys fan, there's much i don't like), but it's clear to me he had the potential to achieve much more. and that's the point of this thread, is it not?
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Postby The Modernist » 23 Aug 2005, 00:37

I agree Wilson's decline was incredibly sad, the one silver lining though was it allowed the other Wilson brothers to come through and shine.

I wonder if the myth of Smile isn't ultimately more beguiling than the likely reality. I think had it been released it would be regarded now as something of a magnificent folly, spellblinding in parts, hopelessly indulgent in others.

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Postby Tonto Papadopoulos » 23 Aug 2005, 00:40

DerModernist wrote:I wonder if the myth of Smile isn't ultimately more beguiling than the likely reality. I think had it been released it would be regarded now as something of a magnificent folly, spellblinding in parts, hopelessly indulgent in others.


go and see it live then tell me that.
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Postby The Modernist » 23 Aug 2005, 00:45

TheBoyGiraffe wrote:
DerModernist wrote:I wonder if the myth of Smile isn't ultimately more beguiling than the likely reality. I think had it been released it would be regarded now as something of a magnificent folly, spellblinding in parts, hopelessly indulgent in others.


go and see it live then tell me that.


But people wouldn't have heard it live would they?

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Postby Tonto Papadopoulos » 23 Aug 2005, 01:18

DerModernist wrote:
TheBoyGiraffe wrote:
DerModernist wrote:I wonder if the myth of Smile isn't ultimately more beguiling than the likely reality. I think had it been released it would be regarded now as something of a magnificent folly, spellblinding in parts, hopelessly indulgent in others.


go and see it live then tell me that.


But people wouldn't have heard it live would they?


i have. twice.
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Postby The Modernist » 23 Aug 2005, 01:46

TheBoyGiraffe wrote:
DerModernist wrote:
TheBoyGiraffe wrote:
DerModernist wrote:I wonder if the myth of Smile isn't ultimately more beguiling than the likely reality. I think had it been released it would be regarded now as something of a magnificent folly, spellblinding in parts, hopelessly indulgent in others.


go and see it live then tell me that.


But people wouldn't have heard it live would they?


i have. twice.


Double post!

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Postby Livet » 23 Aug 2005, 01:58

TheBoyGiraffe wrote:i will say that with SMiLE he was pushing the envelope of what pop music was held to be - more so than syd and maybe even jimi.


I can't let that one go. While I love Smile, and was fortunate enough to see Wilson do it last year, for me it doesn't even come close to Hendrix or Barrett as far as 'pushing the envelope'.
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Postby Snarfyguy » 23 Aug 2005, 02:30

Livet wrote:
TheBoyGiraffe wrote:i will say that with SMiLE he was pushing the envelope of what pop music was held to be - more so than syd and maybe even jimi.


I can't let that one go. While I love Smile, and was fortunate enough to see Wilson do it last year, for me it doesn't even come close to Hendrix or Barrett as far as 'pushing the envelope'.


I think it does. Its broad themes and interlocking, cyclical structure are very advanced. Hendrix may have explored sonic structures that nobody else had imagined, and Barrett's off-kilter pop ditties are genius for sure, but Smile was definitley a major statement (unuttered as it may have been, of course).
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Postby The Slider » 23 Aug 2005, 08:16

But aside from its suite-like structure which, let us not forget, has not really been finalised until late last year, it doesn't really make much of an advance on Pet Sounds, does it?
In fact in many ways, it looks backwards rather than forwards.


But as we are supposedly returning to the point, I'm still not sure how BW was stopped from following his vision.
He carried on writing music, even though he was beyond performing it himself.
Like almost everyone else he had his greatest ideas (in 65-67) then ran out of them.
The madness was a red herring - he was mad when he wrote Pet Sounds and Smile. It didn't stop him then, so I don't see why it should have stopped him carrying on.
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Postby Diamond Dog » 23 Aug 2005, 08:54

Livet wrote:
TheBoyGiraffe wrote:i will say that with SMiLE he was pushing the envelope of what pop music was held to be - more so than syd and maybe even jimi.


I can't let that one go. While I love Smile, and was fortunate enough to see Wilson do it last year, for me it doesn't even come close to Hendrix or Barrett as far as 'pushing the envelope'.


Don't know about Barrett - but, as regards Hendrix, I agree entirely Rita. As time goes on, I'm more and more of the opinion that Hendrix opened up a wholenew world with the three albums he did put together - the changing of the sonic landscape was without precedent, almost.
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Postby Tonto Papadopoulos » 23 Aug 2005, 09:30

The Slider wrote:he was mad when he wrote Pet Sounds and Smile. It didn't stop him then, so I don't see why it should have stopped him carrying on.


thank you, doctor slider. :roll: if only you'd been there at the time to slap him round the face and tell him to pull himself together he may never have suffered that thirty-odd years of crippling mental illness.
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Postby The Slider » 23 Aug 2005, 09:37

He was still writing music
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Postby Tonto Papadopoulos » 23 Aug 2005, 09:41

The Slider wrote:He was still writing music


when he wasn't in bed for five years, yes.
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Postby the hanging monkey » 23 Aug 2005, 09:43

Phil Lynott? Admittedly he did leave a decent amount of material and his best work was probably behind him but after a slightly sticky patch Thunder and Lightning was a return to form. Maybe he had a few more decent albums in him.
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Postby Diamond Dog » 23 Aug 2005, 09:47

The Slider wrote:Yet 79 is way better than 77.

let's face it, they ran out of steam after 75, despite the slight Indian summer.
I love In Through The Out Door, but that is Plant and Jones - Page contributes very little.



Well, I wouldn't go that far - there are nights on the 77 tour (LA, for instance) where they make Knebworth sound like the under rehearsed rehash it really was. But the wave of new 75 shows that have appeared have put a whole new perspective on that tour from February onwards - they really were still on fire some nights, and capable of sheer brilliance.

Page's contribution to "ITTOD" was (at most) mimimal - which really accentuates our point that Jimmy had 'gone' after 76.

Just think though - if they had quit after "Physical Graffiti" and Earls Court, how much higher would their 'rep' be? Quite a thought, isn't it?
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Postby The Slider » 23 Aug 2005, 10:04

TheBoyGiraffe wrote:
The Slider wrote:He was still writing music


when he wasn't in bed for five years, yes.


Well he obviously got out of it (no pun intended) long enough to make his (admittedly lesser) contributions to Sunflower and Surf's Up.
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