Pythons (Deluxe Version)
Produced by Gil Norton—who knows plenty about bringing out the best in punk, pop, and everything in between, as evidenced by his work with Foo Fighters, Pixies, and Patti Smith—Pythons is the album that South Florida's Surfer Blood had in it. Although "Needles and Pins" and "Slow Six" feature a glossier Surfer Blood and "Demon Dance" could be a latter-day Roy Orbison hit from the Jeff Lynne school of production, the remaining seven tracks are amazingly stripped down and vibrant. "Gravity" is a joyously upbeat harmony-enhanced summer hit single in the waiting, with punchy bass guitar following John Paul Pitts' boyish delivery. "I Was Wrong" adds a touch of drama, with a dynamic, Weezer-like punch ready to spring forth in the chorus. "Squeezing Blood" captures the earnest '60s-inspired pop of Fountains of Wayne. "Blair Witch" throws clean-cut vocals on top of compact, grungy guitars. Surfer Blood is proof that with the songs and the right producer, anything is possible. The deluxe version adds two solid bonus tracks: "Bird 4 U" and "Phantom Limb."