Monday, June 22, 2009

New Wave for the New Week #15

There has always been a kinship between New Wave and good old-fashioned '60s Surf Music. Bands like Agent Orange, The Raybeats, and The Surf Punks made (and, in some cases, are still making) music that would make The Ventures and Dick Dale proud. In fact, those and many like-minded bands often chose to cover the original classics from such revered surf artists in addition to pounding out their own updated take on the style.

One would expect such bands to have formed on California beaches, and in many cases that was so. There was one glaring exception, and they may have been the best - if least heralded - of the bunch.

The Insect Surfers were formed in 1979 in - of all places - Washington, DC. Their influences were quickly made clear by early covers of The Nazz's surfy 1968 hit "Open My Eyes" and Wire's dour 1979 post-punk single "Ex-Lion Tamer". The band chugged along for a few years, releasing a handful of really fantastic records before their wave crashed to shore in the early '80s.

The band reformed in 1986 and has been playing and recording ever since, with a sound hewing a bit more closely to the traditional Surf Music style Check out their MySpace page here to hear some of the more recent material and, if you like what you hear, support the band by picking up a CD or two.

For our purposes here, however, we look back fondly on the original incarnation of the band. Their vinyl debut was a 1980 single, "Into the Action," and is our New Wave for the New Week entry this time around. Granted, the sound is somewhat dated (not as much as the fashions and the neon though!), but it still sounds great to these ears. You can see and hear the enthusiastic amateurism here, and if you compare to the clips on their MySpace page, you'll appreciate how far they've come in 30 years while never really ever leaving their own little rift in time.

Here's the clip - enjoy!

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