The Beach Boys

Icon

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The Icon series stands for quality in budget-line collections, always including original hits and very little filler, even though the track listings top out at 12 songs. The Beach Boys' version is no different, beginning at their peak with "Good Vibrations" and working (roughly) backward from 1967, picking up most of their biggest hits, whether Baroque ("Wouldn't It Be Nice"), surf ("Surfer Girl"), or hot rod ("Little Deuce Coupe"). Even "God Only Knows" makes an appearance, not because it was a chart-topper but because its quality production and angelic vocal by Carl Wilson made it a perennial on best-of song lists for years to come. Icon is a short, sharp shot of hits from the surf titans, perfect for beginning any smart '60s pop collection but inevitably leaving the listener wanting more of what made the Beach Boys the first or second best pop group of the decade.

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