Review ·

In case you forgot (and because it may be the only thing he remembers), Brian Wilson would like to officially remind you that he loves southern California. A lot. So much so that he’s crafted a massively bloated, half-sung/half spoken-word musical tribute to the mythically sunsplashed vistas that stretch from Hollywood to Venice Beach but are only utopic within the lysergically hammered wrinkles of this Beach Boy’s brain.


Although Wilson has proven that he is incredibly capable of reaching into his back pages to reanimate the various musical periods of his life (2004’s SMiLE so deftly, brilliantly resurrected and built upon 1966’s Smile that I began to wonder if Wilson is in possession of a little deuce coupe with a flux capacitor), That Lucky Old Sun is content to revamp such turgid and overproduced mid-'70s bombastica as Holland and 15 Big Ones rather than the sparkling pet sounds of the his late-'60s work.

Some of it works -- “Southern California” 's honey-harmony’d and piano-led wistful look at the history of the Beach Boys in specific and SoCal in general is rather touching. But the rest of the album, especially the overwrought spoken-word interludes, remains a series of harmonized thuds and (however pretty) blank-eyed lobotomy-pop.


If Wilson continues to revisit his earlier musical eras, does this mean that we must brace ourselves for the eventual horror of a Brian Wilson (1988) or I Just Wasn’t Made for These Times (1995) rewrite? God only knows.

  • That Lucky Old Sun
  • Morning Beat
  • Room With A View (narrative)
  • Good Kind Of Love
  • Forever My Surfer Girl
  • Venice Beach (narrative)
  • Live Let Live
  • Mexican Girl
  • Cinco de Mayo (narrative)
  • California Role
  • Between Pictures (narrative)
  • Oxygen To The Brain
  • Been Too Long
  • Midnight s Another Day
  • Lucky Old Sun Reprise
  • Goin' Home
  • Southern California

Lucky for us music fans, we still have a musical treasure like Brian Wilson around making new music. You might have heard of a little band he was involved in in the '60s, the Beach Boys. That Lucky Old Sun is the follow-up to Wilson's long-in-the-works SMiLE, which made a critical splash in 2004. Lucky Old Sun is billed as a concept album about Southern California, a topic Wilson knows like no other. The album consists of music and spoken word. Another music legend, Van Dyke Parks, who worked with the Beach Boys back in the day and has more recently collaborated with Joanna Newsom and Inara George, helped Wilson craft Lucky Old Sun. The album is also available in an enhanced CD/DVD format.





Giant Sand - proVISIONS The Verve Forth

This is clearly brian's best work since the 60' Brian shows the genius that I have loved my whole life. Brian Wilson is the best song writer in my lifetime. Nobody has ever written with more heart and melodic catch than Brian. I thank Brian for adding the soundtrack for my life.
Tom Nay

Tom Nay

As a beach boys fan for nearly 50 years, I welcome any additions to the sound. I have had more than a few people tell me that Pet Sounds is the soundtrack of their life. Tom Nay has done an excellent cover of a selection of Brian's best music on "Midnight Pass, Let It Flow". Wish I could contact him, but his previous e-mail seems not to work.

John MacKay

Thanks for dropping the hammer on this steaming pile of crap. Not many were willing. The rating should probably be even lower but that's alright. I can recall very few albums that ever actually infuriated me. This would be #1 on that list. I feel like my intelligence is being insulted by Mr. Wilson everytime I hear it. I'd even be willing to forgive the atrocious lyrics if the melodies were spot on.. and they aren't at all. "Good Kind of Love" kind've hits a groove but it just proves to be really annoying in a very short time. I just want it to be known that I am a fan of Brian Wilson but even he is not above judgement. I'd also like to add that the score for "Smile" is unforgivably low. Should be a 9.5 or 10. No question.


Find us on Facebook

Latest Comments