LIVE AT THE ROXY THEATRE (Brimel/Oglio 1001) 
In early June, 2000, I drove up to what Rolling Stone called “the sleepy burg of
It was an impressive night, with the orchestra taking the stage first for an epic, 30-minute “overture” composed by Van Dyke Parks from an extensive review of Brian’s Beach Boys hits. RS’s Bill Crandall gushed, “The gorgeous, epic construction proved that
The orchestra then left the stage and
Both the music and its performance was stunning. I’m an old Beach Boys fan, and I’ve seen them live both before and after they turned into an oldies band, and I have to say that
After a solid set of nearly an hour by the band, they took a break and the orchestra returned to the stage, joined by the band, to perform all of the album PET SOUNDS straight through, including the instrumentals, in the album’s original sequence. (At the midpoint, Brian announced, “Now, here's side two!”)
Crandall concludes his report: After the performance of PET SOUNDS, “all remained for a fine reading of PET SOUNDS’ sister song ‘Good Vibrations’ before disassembling.
During one of the breaks between sets I found, on sale in the lobby, copies of a new, 2-CD album, LIVE AT THE ROXY THEATRE. I bought one and listened to it on my drive home. Recorded on April 7 and 8, 2000, in
The album was then available only at Brian’s live shows and from his website – but it is now available nationally in stores, presumably through Oglio (Brimel is the merger of Brian’s and his current wife’s first names, and is occasionally rendered as “BriMel” to make this point more obvious).
As such, it’s well worth getting for anyone who has enjoyed either Brian Wilson’s prime years with the Beach Boys or his subsequent solo efforts. Here Brian performs not only his hits (and others’ as well: he does a great version of “Be My Baby” and gives credit to Phil Spector when he introduces it; he also uses the Barenaked Ladies’ “Brian Wilson” to introduce “’Til I Die”) but several new songs as well. “Lay Down Burden” struck me as lyrically awkward, but “The First Time” and “This Isn’t Love” have their moments – and it’s nice to see Brian still writing new songs.
The recording is excellent, and the performances match. Rather than a tired set of retreads, Brian Wilson has given us two lively sets of vitally fresh music – and reminded us all over again of how good his best songs really are. From the innocent rockers like “Surfer Girl” to the “mini-symphony” masterpieces like “Good Vibrations,” and not overlooking stone classics like “I Get Around” and “Don’t Worry, Baby,” Brian Wilson gave us music that summed up a decade – the ’60s – and may live forever. This album certainly enhances their longevity. It’s recommended to all Brian Wilson/Beach Boys fans.
If you are interested in obtaining any of the music discussed in this site, click on Ordering Information
I welcome feedback on these pages. I can be reached directly at twhite8 AT cox DOT net. Let me hear from you. --Dr. P