Besides recording songs for movie soundtracks and compilations (a cover of Nine Inch Nails' "Head Like a Hole," all new tunes and/or remakes for their CD-ROM game Adventures of the Smart Patrol and for Pioneers Who Got Scalped, etc.), Devo has not released a studio album of fresh original material since 1990's Smooth Noodle Maps. And although there's no chance of the band getting back together anytime soon (with all the band members working full-time at Mutato Muzika studios), 2001 saw what may be the closest thing to an all-new Devo album by the band's off-shoot project, the Wipeouters' P Twaaang. Devo's roots lay in surf music of the '60s (Beach Boys, the Ventures, the Trashmen, etc.), as future bandmembers Mark Mothersbaugh, Bob Mothersbaugh, and Robert Casale jammed away in their garages on California-style tunes. By the late '60s and early '70s, surf music was dead, and Devo's futuristic sound began to take shape. But in 2000, the Wipeouters reunited for fun, and the result was their 13-track debut. P Twaaang may not be "pure" surf music, since Devo's electronic sound is subtly used as a basis for many of the songs, but it would make the perfect soundtrack for a space-age surf movie (since most of the songs are instrumental). Highlights include the feel-good album-opening title track and the uptempo "Twist n' Launch," as well as the more retro surf sounds of "Nubbie Boardsmen."
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AllMusic Review by Greg Prato