The legendary Beach Boys are back with their first new album in 16 years to celebrate the 50th anniversary of the act. And although the new studio is at times uneven, it is nonetheless a real joy to behold that the band reunited to put together an album with beautiful harmonies and songs that seem as good as any previous traditional release by the act. The packaging of the new album sure looks just like any other traditional Capitol Records release by the Beach Boys as well where the band is back on the label they once had business conflicts with, abandoning their Brother label. And the style of the songs, largely written by Brian Wilson as well as other Beach Boys members such as Mike Love, or other contributors including Jon Bon Jovi.
What THATS’S WHY GOD MADE THE RADIO mostly is a sentimental, if not beautiful, rear view mirror look back at the warm Summer beach sound and themes of this iconic uniquely American music act. No other nation has beaches or a surf scene exactly like the U.S. once had, where Jan & Dean and The Beach Boys became two of the best known surf acts during the 1960’s. The new album is great fit in the Beach Boys catalog of 29 studio albums, and hopefully is not their last effort. And although new digital recording technology that wasn’t available during the 60’s is used to record this new album, it doesn’t rely on the big “wall of sound” Phil Specter pioneered type of production sound of albums like PET SOUNDS or THE SMiLE SESSIONS, instead offering a more basic production sound.
Overall, this is such a nice return to the endless Summer of The Beach Boys. Thanks so much for making fine album.
The Bottom Line: A sentimental and sometimes almost sad and heartbreaking journey back to the old days of surf from The Beach Boys. They sound far better on this studio album than they do performing live, where old age is rapidly catching up with them and The Beach Boys have long since grown well into men. ***(Three Stars Good. What a great album this is, another real joy to behold. I’m so glad that the group decided to get back together for this album. Whether you’re a big fan or just a casual Beach Boys fan, you’ll love this new album).