The term "lost album" was virtually created to describe Smile, Brian Wilson's long unreleased masterpiece. For 37 years, cruddy sounding bootlegs were all fans had. Remarkably, he has now completely re-recorded and rearranged the original tracks for official release. Its ambit is wide: nothing less than the entirety of American history, society, and culture. Throughout Smile, he effortlessly combines psychedelic rock, heavenly vocal harmonies, and sophisticated orchestrations with a gentle sense of humor. The centerpiece is "Surf's Up." If you're thinking "Surfin' Safari," think again. Intense and spiritual, "Surf's Up," like Smile itself, is one of pop's most uncanny gems.
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