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SPEEDBALL JR: Reviews for the “Treble in Paradise” cd

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SoulSeller.com | 09 February 2012 | Ben | http://www.soulseller-mag.com/?p=9631

Speedball Jr – Treble In Paradise

Wenn man an Belgien denkt, dann fallen den meisten Leuten Dinge wie Pommes Frites, Luc Orient, Schokolade, Männeken Piss und Miesmuscheln ein. Vielleicht auch noch Luky Luke und Tim und Struppi, aber dann ist auch erstmal Schluss. Das Belgien auch bekannt für Surfmusik ist, sollte jetzt für verdutzte Gesichter sorgen.

In der Tat kommt eines der stärksten Surfmusik-Alben dieser Tage aus Belgien, genauer gesagt aus Gent. Die Rede ist von Speedball JR die mit Treble In Paradise ihren dritten Longplayer auf die Welt loslassen.

14 Songs umfasst die Mischung aus Surfsongs und klassischem Agenten-Soundtrack. Man könnte sagen, das Album beginnt mit einer Verfolgungsjagd. Hitzig und rasant. Das ist wahrlich nicht neu, aber in diesem Genre anscheinend ein Muss. Wirklich interessant wird es bei Swimming With The Sharks, dass neben seinem großartigen Titel auch mit einer fantastischen Melodie auf ganzer Linie zu überzeugen weiß. Ein Mitreißer, denn schon nach wenigen Tönen versprührt man das unbändige Verlangen an dieser Welle teilzuhaben. Weiter geht es mit den typischen Charakteristika der Surfmusik – treibend, leichtfüßig und charmant. Immer den Horizont vor Augen und eine kühle Briese um die Nase.

Ein paar düstere Wolken ziehen auf wenn Pilgrimage durch die Boxen gleitet und bei Bombora werden anscheinend die Pferde für den Ritt durch die Prärie gesattelt. Bei Halloween verirrt sich sogar Gesang zwischen die Instrumentalisierung. Speedball JR präsentieren eine buntgemischte Tüte, mit einer erstklassigen Auswahl an eben so bunten und abwechselungsreichen Surfern. Kein bisschen neu, aber wer braucht das schon, wenn es so gut klappt wie hier!

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RifRaf | February 2012| jvb | http://www.rifraf.be

Speedball Jr – Treble In Paradise

Jawel, ze bestaan nog! Vijf jaar hebben ze ons laten wachten, maar het Gents surfabilly-combo heeft het nog altijd in de vingers, knieen en kloten: vanaf opener en titeltrack laat Speedball Jr horen dat het zich ondersscheidt van het doorsnee surfbandje. Dit is aanstekelijke zooi, die je meeneemt van Californische stranden tot de goorste kroegen  (check “Swimming With The Sharks”). Verheven kunst? Ui-ter-aard niet. Ontucht opwekkende, aanstekelijke songs? In overvloed!

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Scootering.com | Recommended Listening – February 2012 | Published: 12:18PM Jan 26th, 2012 | Nik | http://www.scootering.com/news/recommended-listening-february-2012 |

Speedball Jr – Treble In Paradise (Green Cookie)

Several changes in line up have led to Belgium’s Speedball Jr taking something of a sea change from their previous album For The Broad Minded. Out go the buzz saw guitar that epitomised their earlier incarnation, and in comes a more rhythmic and almost hypnotic riffing sound, which is largely nonetheless hectic in its performance.

Tracing their musical roots to the type of instrumental group that went largely out of fashion in the late 1960s, they have become something of a punked up version of The Surfaris.

The overall feel of the album still owes more to Dick Dale than The Beach Boys, and there are still the hints of early psychobilly and garage hidden deep in their sound to add to the interest. Along the way they’ve also apparently been listening to The Doors played at speed too, occasionally dipping into that gorgeous church-like organ sound that you associate with those legends, none more so than on Pilgrimage, where a huge debt is owed to the classic Riders On the Storm.

Understated bass underpins every track, allowing the rhythmic lead and ferocious drumming to battle for attention, while the organ riffs through, alternately driving and filling the tunes with a Sixties vibe.

There are a couple of cover versions on the album, the John Barry written Beat Girl would seem at home on a Sixties soundtrack and their version of The Atlantics’ Bambora hints at spaghetti westerns while being propelled along by frenetic drumming. The only vocal track on the album is an oh-too-short version of Rob Zombie’s Halloween, which lopes along in good style, the distorted vocals adding an extra dimension to the tune.

But it’s their own material that shines for me. The title track lays the foundations for the album with its interplay between rhythmic lead guitar and organ, while the drums pound out the surfing beat. Maiden Surf again has that distinctive surf guitar and almost Surfari styled drum fills, and Swell Hell layers psychobilly influenced guitars over a manic keyboard line.

The album finishes with the garage trash Cor Steijin Rides The Wild, an aural assault that is way too short at just over three minutes, the final fade leaving you begging for more.

Admittedly a change for the band, but change isn’t always for the worse. In this case, it most certainly isn’t.

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Planet Trash  | Donderdag 26 Januari 2012 at 1:56 pm | http://www.planettrash.nl/?e=777

Speedball Jr – Treble In Paradise (Green Cookie)

Het openingsnummer op de nieuwe plaat van Speedball Jr is nog een beetje tam. Alsof de band er nog even in moet komen. Het is dan ook een tijdje geleden dat de uit Gent afkomstige surfband een plaat uitbracht. Toen, in 2006, verscheen For The Broad Minded. De band heeft de nodige hobbels moeten nemen voordat het kon beginnen aan het opnemen van het onlangs verschenen Treble In Paradise. Het heeft geresulteerd in een plaat waar enkele nuanceverschillen zijn waar te nemen. Het is niet meer direct vol gas geven op de surftrashsnelweg, steeds vaker wordt de nadruk gelegd op de immer aanwezige hammondorgel. In Take It Back bijvoorbeeld. Maar liefhebbers van het ruigere surfwerk komen ook nog steeds aan hun trekken op deze plaat van Speedball Jr. Als gitarist Sascha Reyners de ruimte krijgt kleunt hij er nog altijd met twee gestrekte benen in. Tussen het eigen werk staan ook nog enkele covers. Bombora van The Atlantics is daarvan het meest geslaagd. Ingetogen en spannend tegelijkertijd. Er zijn weinig surfbands die dat lukt, maar deze Belgen doen het haast argeloos.

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Phil Dirt | Reverb Central | http://www.reverbcentral.com/reviews/s/speedball8955.html

Phil Dirt – Reverb Central – PO Box 1609, Felton, CA 95018-1609 USA

Speedball Jr – Treble in Paradise 3/5

Speedball Jr deliver some very intense material often in a murky wash. Mixes are inconsistent, and the organ is sometimes overbearing. This is a really strong band most of the time, but production values restrain the music’s effectiveness.

Picks: Treble in Paradise, Swimming With The Sharks, Beat Girl, Pilgrimage, Bombora, Motion Of The Ocean, ÉAnd The Horse You Rode In On, There She Blows, Cor Steijn Rides The Wild

Track by Track Review

Treble in Paradise 3/5

Spy Surf (Instrumental)

Heavy and fuzzy, with a tiki underbelly and surf edge. “Treble in Paradise” has a spy-style melody and a great title. Some excellent drums here.

Swell Hell 3/5

Spy Surf (Instrumental)

Tuff glissandos and dark, menacing double picked tone. The organ is overbearing, sapping the track’s energy.

Swimming With The Sharks 3/5

Spy Surf (Instrumental)

Starting slowly, but launching into a big row of guitar and organ. A lack of panning causes the organ to obscure the guitar’s power. Otherwise, “Swimming With The Sharks” is a powerful track.

Beat Girl 3/5

Spy Surf (Instrumental)

John Barry‘s “Beat Girl” gets an interesting treatment with a rich rhythm section and spooky stereo Leslie organ lead. The arrangement works really well with this classic British tune.

Take It Back 3/5

Spy Surf (Instrumental)

Splendid organ lines and a great beat bring out a lot of fun as “Take It Back” unfolds.

Pilgrimage 3/5

Spy Surf (Instrumental)

A traditional surf rhythm pattern and haunted keys lay out a graveyard image. The lead is way in the back, adding to the foggy, disturbed feeling. Pretty interesting.

Bombora 4/5

Surf (Instrumental)

The Atlantics‘ “Bombora” is done with superb reverence. Great guitar licks, true to the original. Powerful, fun, and dripping surf!

Motion Of The Ocean 4/5

Surf (Instrumental)

Organic and thumping, with organ well mixed into the track. Big booming bass and a solid guitar line. gritty glissandos and dangerous curl. “Motion Of The Ocean” rocks and rumbles.

Mr. White 2/5

Spy Surf (Instrumental)

Heavy guitar, angular guitar chords, and long organ chords. “Mr. White” has a thick and murky sound with overbearing organ. Can’t really tell what the guitar is doing, and that is where the melody is.

… And The Horse You Rode In On 3/5

Spy Surf (Instrumental)

…And The Horse You Rode In On” is an aggressive surf-rock assault. Gritty, powerful, and dangerous. Is this the The Mofos‘ song?

There She Blows 4/5

Spy Surf (Instrumental)

There She Blows” is hauntingly beautiful. It has a Sandals island sense about it. Peaceful, picturesque, and just a touch sad. I like this a lot!

Maiden Surf 2/5

Rock (Instrumental)

On the murky side, “Maiden Surf” is a bit fast, and seems frantic. Riffy and dark.

Cor Steijn Rides The Wild 3/5

Spy Surf (Instrumental)

The Apemen‘s “Cor Steijn Rides The Wild” is raucous and loud, preserving the garage assault required by the original. Very intense!

 

Written by Green Cookie

February 10th, 2000 at 12:02 am