New Dimensions

The Best of the New Dimensions

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This best-of includes 22 tracks (four of them previously unissued) recorded in 1963 and 1964 by the New Dimensions. It's fair to say that it might have never been compiled had collector interest in the band not been spiked by the presence of a very young Michael Lloyd (who looks about 12 on the cover photo) and future Three Dog Night keyboardist Jimmy Greenspoon (who doesn't look much older). It almost sounds more like a compilation album than a single-artist collection, so inadvertently accurately does it capture several sub-styles of early-'60s Californian instrumental surf music at its peak. There are moody, electric keyboard-decorated rumbles in the spirit of the Chantays' classic hit "Pipeline"; roaring Dick Dale-like workouts, including a version of one of Dale's signature tunes, "Miserlou"; and more elementary R&B-influenced grinders with saxophone. It's all very competently played, especially considering their youth. What it lacks, however, is a song, or songs, with that classic quality of something like "Pipeline" or "Miserlou," though the haunting aura of "Pipeline" in particular is something to which they often aspire. The history of this obscure group is certainly well documented in the liner notes, however, with the help of many recollections from Lloyd.

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