|"Come Back, Brian!" compiles some of Mr. Wilson's finest work from the past
decade or so, much of it unreleased in any form (and, unfortunately, destined to remain
Our program begins with demos for four "lost" songs. Although
"Turning Point" is the best, the other three are certainly nothing to be
embarrassed about (and let's get that straight, Brian has turned in some embarrassing
performances. We assure you, none of them will be found on this disc!)
Following the demos, we have a series of alternate versions of songs from Brian's 1988
solo album "Brian Wilson". Stripped of the technological overkill imposed
on him by the record company, some of these songs really shine. "Love and
Marcy" and "Melt Away" are live performances, with Brian performing along
with a prerecorded backing track. His performances are nothing short of
remarkable. "Walkin' The Line" is a demo, with a considerably better vocal
than the released version. "Baby Let Your Hair Grow Long" and "Meet
Me In My Dreams Tonight" are earlier versions, with different lyrics.
"Little Children" and "There's So Many" (known at the time as "Up
In The Sky") are rough demos, and "One For The Boys" has a different vocal
part than the released version. "He Couldn't Get His Poor Body To Move"
was released as the B-side to "Love and Mercy" (you can also find it as a bonus
track on Vigotone 112, "Sweet Insanity"). This outtake has a different set
Following the '88-era material we have a beautiful demo of "Don't Let Her Know
She's An Angel" as a prelude to tracks from "Sweet Insanity", Brian's
unreleased LP from the early '90's. There were at least two different versions of
this album, both rejected (and now, with lyricist Landy out of the picture, destined to be
forever unreleased). Vigotone 112 offered the complete second version. Here we
have a selection of the most interesting or different songs from the first version.
"Someone To Love" offers Brian's delightful response vocals which were
eliminated in the second version. "Water Builds Up" has more distinctive
"teapot" sounds, and "Don't Let Her Know She's An Angel" has a
different set of lyrics. "Let's Get Together" was omitted entirely from
the second version (as were "Save The Day" and the full "Concert
Tonight", both of which were, frankly, too awful to include here). Finally, the
"first version" mix of "Smart Girls", included here, is far, far
superior to the mix heard on the second "Sweet Insanity".
Finally, a couple of memorable guest appearances round out our collection. Brian
sings 3/4 of the vocals on a cover of The Stones' "We Love You", by Ryuichi
Sakamoto (this mix is unreleased), and contributed boogie-woogie piano and backing vocals
in a recent performance with daughter Carrie on "Fantasy is Reality / Bells Of
Next Year (1995) will hopefully see Brian's return with a new collaboration with Van
Dyke Parks (at the moment, titled "Orange Crate Art"). Until that time,
you have this fine series to keep you warm.