A Beach Boys album that only three people in the world seem to like, Smiley Smile is probably unfairly maligned simply because it was the replacement for the legendary, unfinished, unreleased, Smile album.

Smiley Smile has many of the same songs as Smile, mostly written by Brian Wilson and lyricist Van Dyke Parks, but only one or two actual tracks remain. The rest were remade hurriedly, with in some cases lyric alterations by Mike Love, and as a result this album is the first to have the credit 'produced by the Beach Boys' rather than 'produced by Brian Wilson'.

Despite this, the album is a minimalist miniature masterpiece. Other than obvious masterworks like Heroes & Villains and Good Vibrations, the album is mostly made up of sublime vocal harmonies over barely-audible organ backings. The quietest, oddest album ever released by a mainstream group, the album contains one other genuinely great song, Wonderful, and the rest of the album consists of round-like chants with meaningless, often humorous lyrics.

Also, oddly enough, the only Beach Boys album to be made up entirely of Brian Wilson songs, other than The Beach Boys Love You....

Bruce Johnston has recently called this a perfect album, and claims he prefers it to Smile, opinions with which I for one heartily agree.

Tracklisting:

  1. Heroes and Villains
  2. Vegatables
  3. Fall Breaks And Back To Winter
  4. She's Goin' Bald
  5. Little Pad
  6. Good Vibrations
  7. With Me Tonight
  8. Wind Chimes
  9. Gettin' Hungry
  10. Wonderful
  11. Whistle In

Previous Beach Boys album (released) - Pet Sounds
Previous Beach Boys album (unreleased) - Smile
Next Beach Boys album - Wild Honey

Band members for this album - Brian Wilson, Carl Wilson, Dennis Wilson, Mike Love, Al Jardine, Bruce Johnston

Currently available on Capitol Records as a twofer with Wild Honey

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