(Hilliard, Ohio) – Speaking loudly at the Nike Sports Lounge, area book catalog writer Amram Patel called the 1973 Beach Boys album Holland “far and away the [band's] most consistent Lp”. “Despite its fairly tortured creation,” bellowed Patel, who’d had several Rum and Cokes at this point, “Holland hangs together real well.”
Others, however, were quick to dismiss the 33-year-old’s assessment. “Freakin’ Amram showing off,” is how one friend characterised Patel’s critique. “He’s like, ‘No, Pet Sounds isn’t the best, that’s way too obvious’,” Nike regular Bobby Flannel said. “Yeah, pal, it’s obvious for good reasons.”
“He gets really oppositional and precious when he’s been drinking,” added Flannel.
According to Patel, Holland sounds like the legendary California band still had something to prove. “It was the last record they made,” he slurred, “before completely capitulating to Mike Love’s money-spinning, oldies self-parody.”
“The only thing I wish,” burbled Patel, his index finger jabbing the air and neck lolling “was that, you know, the Mount Vernon and Fairway sequence had been included in the album’s running order, as the originally envisaged centerpiece. If [the other members] had tossed Brian that bone, he’d've been a lot more, like, involved in the album’s production and it wouldn’t have turned out as mediocre a record as it ended up, even with ‘Sail On[, Sailor]‘ and ‘Funky Pretty’ which are really good, an’ if the rest of Holland had been that good, then maybe the Beach Boys could’ve had a proper second career instead of another 40 years of God-damn ‘Fun, Fun Fun’ ‘n’ that shit.” He contradicted himself several more times as the rant proceeded to get less and less coherent.
At press time, Patel was sobbing silently, his head laying over his folded arms resting on the bar.
Editor’s Note: Another excellent find last Bank Holiday. This copy of Holland includes the Mount Vernon and Fairway EP in its original cover, which I’d never seen before. In fact, while I recognised the 7″ itself, I was initially convinced someone had housed it in a Flying Lizards picture sleeve or something, so at odds with the rest of Holland’s aesthetic is the stoner-with-a-magic-marker look of the single.