Beach Boys

Love You - Brother 1977

Tracks: 1. Let Us Go On This Way / 2. Roller Skating Child / 3. Mona / 4. Johnny Carson / 5. Good Time / 6. Honkin' Down the Highway / 7. Ding Dang / 8. Solar System / 9. The Night Was So Young / 10. I'll Bet He's Nice / 11. Let's Put Our Hearts Together / 12. I Wanna Pick You Up / 13. Airplane / 14. Love Is a Woman


After the disappointing and pretty hyped 1976 album "15 Big Ones" the Beach Boys were already out the next year with a new album, "Love You". Brian Wilson had made his comeback with 15 Big Ones ", but it was obvious that his inspiration, both as a producer and songwriter was not what it used to be. Moreover his vocals changed so much that they were hardly recognizable.

On "Love You" Brian Wilson makes a much stronger impression. There are generally more good songs than its predecessor, which was largely dominated by cover versions.

Without much hesitation I would count for at least half of the disc as great and successful. Brian has written all the songs, a couple with help from either Mike Love or Al Jardine.

"Love You" opens firmly in the classic Beach Boys style with "Let's Go On This Way", which features the well-known strong lead vocals from Carl Wilson. Mike Love is also easily recognizable on "Roller Skating Child", solidly backed by Al Jardine and Carl Wilson.

These two songs ensures a good start to the album. The next two "Mona" and "Johnny Carson", are not among my favorites, but is not without charm either.

A highlight is "Good Time", sung by Brian Wilson. The song was actually recorded back in 1972 when Brian's vocals still had his original strength and tone. Brian also takes the lead vocal on "Solar System" and the change in his voice is significant. It seems, however, stronger than on "15 Big Ones" and the track is one of the album's most complex. Even better is "The Night was so Young", a fine ballad with lead vocals by Carl Wilson.

Very catchy is "I bet he's nice," sung by the three Wilson brothers - another highlight. I've never been a big fan of duets, and Brian's and his wife Marilyn's efforts on "Let's Put Our Hearts Together", can in no way change my mind on this. Dennis Wilson sings the ambiguous "I Wanna Pick You Up" - helped underways by Brian. A very sweet song. "Airplane" has a lightness that makes you think back to the golden years in the late 1960s. Fine lead vocals of Mike Love.

All in all one of the most successful post-Holland albums - perhaps some day it will get a deserved classic status.

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