It’s hard to believe that the iconic Beach Boys album Pet Sounds turned 50 this week.
The album will be re-released as a deluxe reissue on June 10th to mark this huge milestone.
Pet Sounds was inducted into the Grammy Hall of Fame in 1998 and is without doubt one of music’s most noted influences for musicians, with critics regularly citing the album as one of the greatest albums ever recorded.
Founding member and singer Brian Wilson spoke of how he never tires of talking about his greatest creation, and the fact that he still prefers the original monophonic version of his masterpiece.
In a recent interview with Esquire magazine, Brian Wilson talked about his former band mate Mike Love saying: “It’s great to have someone who can keep you laughing when you’re working hard in the studio, and I remember Mike was really funny when we were working on Pet Sounds. I try to forget the bad stuff. Mostly, we had a lot of fun in the studio. I remember Al Jardine had to stand on a little block, because he was kind of short, when we all stood around the microphone, and that Mike kept making jokes, making us laugh. Those were really great times.”
When asked if he still listened to the album, Wilson said: “I do listen to it, yeah,” says Wilson, who, remarkably, has largely been deaf in one ear for most of his life. [x_blockquote cite=”Brian Wilson” type=”left”]”I think the stereo and surround mixes, and all the outtakes, are really good and very well done, but I do prefer the original mono version, because of my hearing.”[/x_blockquote]
Pet Sounds transformed the band completely and ended the Beach Boys’ career as a pop band.
The album’s songs, themes, production, and innovative use of instruments, set a new standard for what recording an album could and should be, and launched the Beach Boys to the forefront of popular music trends.
On its initial release, and very much to Wilson’s dismay, the album had a lukewarm reception in the US, only managing to peak at 10th place on the Billboard 200.
Capitol Records, the band’s label, also released a Beach Boys greatest hits collection not too long afterward, when it looked like Pet Sounds wasn’t having the effect the band or Capitol had hoped for.
Despite its disappointing debut, Pet Sounds was, and is, tremendously influential. If you own the album, why not put it on again, if you don’t, then listen to it today, we’re sure you won’t be disappointed.