Astro Coast - Surfer Blood
Metascore
79

Generally favorable reviews - based on 25 Critics

Critic score distribution:
  1. Positive: 22 out of 25
  2. Negative: 0 out of 25
  1. He delivers a reprise of the same B part in a more forceful, normal voice: "Why is everything a chore?/I'm too young to be defeated." So far, he isn't. Wish him luck with that riptide.
  2. Its youthful sense of noise and joy and wonder are heartening, its way with a tune addictive. Would that all summers were as warm, as happy and as big-hearted as this music.
  3. It's in the zealous craftsmanship of doing just about everything right and causing that aggregate rightness to harmonize in vibrant song about trying to be better that the truth becomes evident: this band is for real.
  4. To some extent, Astro Coast comes off like a muscular, radio-ready version of music that would've been found on a limited-edition 45 back in the mid-'90s. But the way Surfer Blood balances escapism and grit is a neat trick, and one that never really loses its sense of wonder.
  5. Ambition can just as easily manifest itself as a desire to create a relentlessly catchy, "classic indie" album in your own dorm room, and if that's what Surfer Blood set out to do, Astro Coast succeeds wildly.
  6. As you might imagine, it's yet another interpretation of classic surf-rock, but as crowded as this scene seems to have gotten lately, most of its practitioners do the style quite well. Surfer Blood are no exception, and their varied approach makes for an intriguing album.
  7. It's stunningly close to being a masterful pop record, one exhibiting a tremendous amount of love and care in its meticulous level of craft. [Holiday 2009, p.77]
  8. 80
    From Palm Beach, the new wave of 21st century powerpop. [July 2010, p. 97]
  9. Led by a yearning frontman getting his Morrissey on, it's a debut that's boyishly and buoyantly charming. [Aug 2010, p.126]
  10. 80
    Astro Coast can stand up to online scrutiny--it's girls that keep Surfer Blood's reverbed indie rock jumping out of its skin.
  11. Astro Coast sounds like an honest representation of four gifted songwriters writing what they know and how they know it. What they know is a refreshing change of pace for the indie rock narrative.
  12. Astro Coast succeeds admirably because it pulses with a fun, youthful, and invigorating feel, and obvious lack of arty pretenses, studio mediation, or self-importance. Not every band can be Radiohead, thankfully.
  13. Their potential is the wrong thing to appreciate: it's their immediacy, their unstudied and unfocused energy, that hits the spot.
  14. Perhaps what's most impressive about Astro Coast as a complete album is Surfer Blood's ability to maintain cohesion and consistency, while infusing in a bit of variety.
  15. 76
    The star of the show here is ultimately the group's tuneful popcraft and its subtly gloomy underbelly. [Holiday 2009, p.102]
  16. Jan 7, 2011
    70
    Astro Coast is a welcome reminder of the youthful vigour and playfulness of early Pavement and Weezer, imbibing the Sixties rule-book of good pop without coming off as a bad pastiche.
  17. There are just too many ideas for a first encounter. The good ones are special, no doubt, but a lot of the others are just other people's and lack the stamp of a band who know exactly who they are and what they're about.
  18. Astro Coast sounds so prescient that Surfer Blood will be riding a wave of popularity for a good few months yet.
  19. Pavement noise scrimmages, warped Pixies surf rock, fresh-faced Weezer tuneage, it's all the same mess to them. But they dress up their guitar-mad escapades in a stadium-echo kick that Nineties indie kids were too grumpy to try.
  20. What could have been a sterling six-track EP is still a solid album to blast until the weather matches its summertime mood. [Feb 2010, p.97]
  21. Maybe that's the key to the whole album, how it can seem to be a blog-fisher one moment and slap you upside the head another: it dissolves before you actually know what hit you. But for a lot of us, that's all the more reason to dive right back in.
  22. All the songs on Astro Coast, the 10-song debut from South Florida quartet Surfer Blood, hinge on the mighty riff. Guitarist John Paul Pitts' vocals are secondary, and the guitar compensates, weaving Built to Spill's guitar heroism into three-minute shards of pop-punk.
  23. While it provokes some unpredictable moments, it's heartbreaking to listen to such tuneful moments of inspiration buried beneath towering stacks of old debris, and not the vintage kind.
  24. 60
    When you live in Florida, it is summertime all the time, which might be why this Palm Beach quartet have developed such a seasonal vibe on their sun-spotted indie-pop debut. [Aug 2010, p.96]
  25. Even at its best this whole record sounds like a band who wants to make an impact by trying to be everything to everyone. And because they're not too good at everything they do yet, this lack of a definitive identity that makes it difficult to take them seriously (or if this is their definitive identity, they're just boring).
User Score
8.0

Generally favorable reviews- based on 26 Ratings

User score distribution:
  1. Positive: 6 out of 6
  2. Mixed: 0 out of 6
  3. Negative: 0 out of 6
  1. TylerI
    Jan 27, 2010
    8
    The 'no ripcord' review of this album is amazing in its complete lack of musical perspective in comparing this music to surf rock. The 'no ripcord' review of this album is amazing in its complete lack of musical perspective in comparing this music to surf rock. I mean I guess it must be since surfer is in their name... right? The assumption that the author makes, that the musicians in this band are somehow paying homage to a slew of bands they probably don't listen to is wildly amusing. Full Review »
  2. j30
    Sep 22, 2011
    8
    This made my favorite albums of 2010 lists. Just a fantastic debut from the Florida based band. I look forward to hearing more of their workThis made my favorite albums of 2010 lists. Just a fantastic debut from the Florida based band. I look forward to hearing more of their work in the future. Early Weezer and the Pixes come to mind when I listen to the record. Full Review »
  3. Sep 7, 2010
    7
    This album captures the throwback feel while sounding modern. Just because 'surfer' is in the groups name, this sound has little to do withThis album captures the throwback feel while sounding modern. Just because 'surfer' is in the groups name, this sound has little to do with 'surf music'. Love the off kilter arrangements in spots. Lou Reed would be proud of his influences. Full Review »