Written By Braddon S. Williams
The Beach Boys: Pet Sounds
Brian Wilson, the mastermind behind The Beach Boys, made his crowning achievement in 1966 with the release of Pet Sounds. In a time when The Beatles were breaking new ground with every new album, Wilson kept pace with their innovations and made a few of his own.
Just as the Fab Four stopped touring around that time, Wilson decided to record songs with instruments and sounds not generally associated with pop music. Pet Sounds became one of those albums that people listened to for the sake of the experience, and not just as something to dance to or watch being performed in a concert.
Pet Sounds influenced musicians in terms of what could be achieved in a recording studio, and went a long way towards establishing rock music as art.
There are classic echoes of what the Beach Boys had built their early reputation on (Wouldn’t It Be Nice, Sloop John B, Caroline, No), but God Only Knows was a quantum leap forward, and Paul McCartney himself said that song inspired him throughout the recording of Sgt. Pepper’s Lonely Hearts Club Band.
I am a sucker for vocal harmonies, and this list just wouldn’t have been complete without The Beach Boys.