“Pet Sounds” has long been considered a backbone of psychedelic music. Sure, bands like The Thirteenth Floor Elevators beat the Beach Boys by a year or two, but the release of “Pet Sounds” in 1966 sent reverberations through music that are still being felt today. Brian Wilson has been touring the album in full this year to celebrate its golden jubilee(!). Of all of his appearances, its possible that he won’t get a better treatment anywhere than at Levitation Festival next weekend in Austin, Texas.
To show their reverence and appreciation, the aptly-named festival organizers The Reverberation Appreciation Society have compiled an album-length tribute to “Pet Sounds,” made up of bands playing at the festival.
Stereogum premiered the album today, though the official release will be next weekend for festival-goers and May 27th for all of us plebes. You might be asking yourself, “Kevin, you just told us that ‘Pet Sounds’ is a monumental album in music history, why should I bother with some randos playing different versions of songs I love?” To that, I say that many of the tracks, such as Cool Ghouls take on “Here Today” and Morgan Delt’s “Don’t Talk (Put Your Head on my Shoulder),” are loving takes on the source material with just enough of a twist to make them seem new again.
If anything, it’s a testament to the groundbreaking songwriting of Brian Wilson. Stream “The Reverberation Appreciation Society Presents a Tribute to Pet Sounds” at this link and compare it to some of the originals below.