As compilations go this is up there with the best. 28 tracks of the Beach Boys at the top of their form (or close to the top, anyway). And at the price this is great value. It's easy to forget just how important the Beach Boys were to the progression of popular music in the 1960s. Brian Wilson used to watch what the Beatles were doing and try to match them on the artistic level. The Beach Boys 'Pet Sounds' was born of this rivalry and Paul McCartney regarded it as one of the greatest popular-music albums ever made. It spurred the Beatles to complete 'Revolver' and then make 'Sgt Pepper'. Brian Wilson was the Beach Boys' creative genius and when he broke down they lost their leadership position. However they left a huge repertoire of major hits, many of which are captured on this compilation. Some of the most finely crafted pop-music recordings ever made are here. Pete Doggett has written a paragraph in the accompanying booklet giving a little background to each of the tracks, which makes for interesting reading.
2012 marked the 50th anniversary of the greatest American band, The Beach Boys. To mark this momentous occasion, the band reunited to tour the country as well as a number of International concerts. The fans were thrilled to see Brian Wilson, Mike Love, Al Jardine, Bruce Johnston and David Marks on the same stage again, playing all the hits and more. This magical tour is now captured on the 41 track collection, Live-The 50th Anniversary Tour.
Merry Christmas From the Beach Boys features the Beach Boys performing a variety of holiday favorites. Some of the featured songs, such as "Frosty the Snowman" and "Santa Claus Is Coming to Town," are long-time favorites, while other songs, such as "Santa's Beard" and "Merry Christmas, Baby," are composed by the Beach Boys themselves. All of the performances are wonderful, even the long-time favorites sounding surprisingly novel. However, since this collection only includes nine songs, it's rather brief and leaves you feeling a bit unsatisfied as a result.