The Beach Boys (album)

The Beach Boys
Studio album by The Beach Boys
Released June 10, 1985
Recorded June 1984–March 1985
Genre Rock, pop rock, new wave
Length 40:31
Label Brother/Caribou/CBS
Producer Steve Levine
The Beach Boys chronology
The Beach Boys
Made in U.S.A.
(1986)Made in U.S.A.1986
Singles from The Beach Boys
  1. "Getcha Back"/"Male Ego"
    Released: May 8, 1985
  2. "It's Gettin' Late"
    Released: July 17, 1985
  3. "She Believes in Love Again"/"It's Just a Matter of Time"
    Released: September 1985

The Beach Boys is the 25th studio album by American rock band the Beach Boys, released on June 10, 1985. Produced by Steve Levine, the album is the band's first recording after the drowning death of founding member Dennis Wilson. It was also the band's first album to be recorded digitally and the last released by James William Guercio's Caribou Records.

Music and lyrics

For The Beach Boys, the band hired Culture Club producer Steve Levine, who took them into the world of drum machines, synthesizers, sampling, and hi-tech recording technology. Brian Wilson, Carl Wilson, Mike Love, Bruce Johnston and Al Jardine all took active roles in the project, writing several new songs for it, with Stevie Wonder and Culture Club each donating a song. The album was recorded during summer 1984 at Red Bus studio in London, and Westlake Audio in Los Angeles during late 1984/early 1985. It features Motown artist Stevie Wonder on harmonica and keyboards on the song "I Do Love You", which he also wrote. Ringo Starr also appears on the track "California Calling". Noted guitarist Gary Moore features on all tracks playing both guitar and synthaxe.

Brian Wilson contributed a song written in 1982 by himself and Dennis Wilson called "Oh Lord", but the song did not make the final cut. Also cut from the album was a cover of "At the Hop" with lead vocals by Mike Love.

Promotional videos

Two videos were produced to promote the album: "Getcha Back" and "It's Gettin' Late." Both videos feature a stereotypical nerd as the central character who socializes near the beach. In "Getcha Back", all band members are featured in a story of childhood love separated until the couple reaches their teenage years. In the second video, "It's Gettin' Late", the central character learns about the trials and tribulations of dating. The only Beach Boys member to appear in "It's Gettin' Late" is Brian Wilson, who makes an appearance at the end of the video. He is shown picking up a seashell and using it to listen to the song "California Calling".[citation needed]


Although "Getcha Back", was a top 30 hit, the album only reached No. 52 in the U.S. (making it their highest charting album since the release of 1976's album 15 Big Ones). After the album, CBS Records let the band's contract expire, leaving them without a record deal for the first time in years.[citation needed]


Professional ratings
Review scores
Source Rating
AllMusic 2/5 stars[1]
Blender 1/5 stars[2]
Robert Christgau C[3]
Encyclopedia of Popular Music 3/5 stars[4]
The Rolling Stone Album Guide 1/5 stars[5]

Track listing

Eugene Landy originally received co-writer's credit for all Brian Wilson compositions. This credit was omitted on later editions.

Side one
No. Title Writer(s) Lead Vocals Length
1. "Getcha Back" Mike Love, Terry Melcher; arranged by Brian Wilson Mike Love and Brian Wilson 3:02
2. "It's Gettin' Late" Carl Wilson, Myrna Smith-Schilling, Robert White Johnson Carl Wilson 3:27
3. "Crack at Your Love" Brian Wilson, Al Jardine Al Jardine and Brian Wilson 3:40
4. "Maybe I Don't Know" Carl Wilson, Smith-Schilling, Steve Levine, Julian Stewart Lindsay Carl Wilson 3:54
5. "She Believes in Love Again" Bruce Johnston Carl Wilson and Bruce Johnston 3:29
Side two
No. Title Writer(s) Lead Vocals Length
1. "California Calling" Jardine, Brian Wilson Mike Love and Al Jardine 2:50
2. "Passing Friend" George O'Dowd, Roy Hay Carl Wilson 5:00
3. "I'm So Lonely" Brian Wilson Brian Wilson and Carl Wilson 2:52
4. "Where I Belong" Carl Wilson, Johnson Carl Wilson and Al Jardine 2:58
5. "I Do Love You" Stevie Wonder Carl Wilson and Al Jardine 4:20
6. "It's Just a Matter of Time" Brian Wilson Brian Wilson and Mike Love 2:23
Bonus CD track
No. Title Writer(s) Lead Vocals Length
12. "Male Ego" Brian Wilson, Mike Love Brian Wilson and Mike Love 2:32


The Beach Boys
Additional musicians
  • John Alder – Guitars, Dobro
  • Graham Broad – Drums, Percussion
  • Stuart Gordon – Violin, Viola, Cello
  • Steve Grainger – Baritone Saxophone, Tenor Saxophone
  • Roy Hay – all instruments on "Passing Friend" except Saxophone and Programming
  • Simon Humphrey – Bass
  • Judd Lander – Harmonica
  • Steve Levine – Fairlight and Drum Programming
  • Julian Lindsay – Kurzweil 250, PPG Wave 2.3, Programming, Yamaha DX1, Oberheim OB8, String Arrangement, Organ, Acoustic Piano, Bass
  • Terry Melcher – Kurzweil 250
  • Kenneth McGregor – Trombone
  • George McFarlaine – Bass
  • Gary Moore – Guitars, Synthaxe
  • Ian Ritchie – Tenor Saxophone, Lyricon
  • Dave Spence – Trumpet
  • Ringo Starr – Drums, Timpani (all on "California Calling")
  • Stevie Wonder – Drums, Bass, Fender Rhodes, Harmonica (all on "I Do Love You")

Chart positions

Chart (1980) Peak
U.S. Billboard 200 Albums 52
UK Top 40 Album Chart 60[6]


  1. ^ Ruhlmann, William. The Beach Boys at AllMusic
  2. ^ Wolk, Douglas (October 2004). "The Beach Boys Keepin the Summer Alive/The Beach Boys". Blender. Archived from the original on June 30, 2006. Retrieved June 2, 2017. 
  3. ^ Robert Christgau review
  4. ^ Larkin, Colin, ed. (2006). The Encyclopedia of Popular Music (4th ed.). London: Oxford University Press. p. 479. ISBN 978-0-19-531373-4. 
  5. ^ Brackett, Nathan; with Hoard, Christian, eds. (2004). The New Rolling Stone Album Guide (4th ed.). New York, NY: Fireside/Simon & Schuster. p. 46. ISBN 0-7432-0169-8. 
  6. ^ The Beach Boys The Beach Boys
  • Keepin' the Summer Alive/The Beach Boys CD booklet notes, Andrew G. Doe, c.2000. - Contains personnel listings for both but only details instruments for the latter.
  • "Top Pop Albums 1955-2001", Joel Whitburn, c. 2002.