Reviews + Awards

GET IN On the FUN with our “Guitar Fun” CD!   Released Oct. 2016
Hear songs free below. Click title to start album play from there. To halt click vertical lines that appear inside circle. The song list scrolls up & down.
Get your physical CD from DWM Music , Deep Eddy Music or CD Baby Music

In July 2016 “Guitar Fun” won the national award for “Best Rock Instrumental Album.” Quoting, “Insanitizers deploy their marvelous talent for the guitar to the interpretation of a modern vibe – what results is a completely novel experience of a genre you thought you knew and understood.”
reference: TheAkademia.com/july2016_bestalbum_instrumentalrock3.html

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“Guitar Fun” is reviewed in Pipeline Magazine issue #102 Autumn 2016,. It’s a Top Ten Pick by editor Al Taylor. He writes, “a full hour of guitar fun…Rich guitar sounds abound as Shootout sets a western theme and Dark Eyes Rock gives the old folk tune a good working over. Tasty echo and twang decorate Rocket Pack…and there’s more rich guitar on Huntington Surf.”

“There’s a resonating guitar intensity to most numbers…organ plays the support role on Love in Purgatory…and it takes the lead on Resonance. Misigila is from the same dynamic mold as Misirlou. Waterboard Surf 2016 is another lively piece swathed with guitar and Loose Surfer features a pedalled lead. Listening to this album is a very intense experience, not for the fainthearted!”

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“New Gandy Dancer” Magazine from the U.K. reviewed Guitar Fun in issue #125, Oct. 2016:  “We like The Insanitizers!…another jolly twangfest of no less than 22 great tracks. Good stroke having the keyboard-led Resonance to break up the guitars…The covers are delightful arrangements of Irish Washerwoman (and she rocks!) and the European classic Dark Eyes. Rocket Pack has a great Joe Meek guitar sound. A Day in Tokyo with its strong melody line could well be a Ventures song from their “Pops in Japan” albums. Solid twin guitars with Malaguena. Misigila is the big surf sound…W-Ray Gun a deep resonant twanger finishes this fine set.” Rated 4/4.

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In December 2016 the first song on this CD “Shootout” won FIRST PLACE in the 2016 Dallas Songwriters Association Contest for instrumentals. The award page cites Insanitizers guitarist Conrad Swartz as the songwriter:
https://dallassongwriters.org/2016-dsa-song-contest-winners/
This competition allowed all genres of music.

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In June 2015 we received the national award for “Best Rock Instrumental Song” from The Akademia (www.TheAkademia.com) for our recording “Shootout.” This award spans all rock instrumentals. “Winning an Akademia Award is a rare career distinction.” This song is on our “Guitar Fun” album.
reference: TheAkademia.com/june2015_bestsong_instrumentalrock.html

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Disc Jockey Hunter King from New Orleans radio WTUL aired several songs from “Guitar Fun” and wrote (http://www.stormsurgeofreverb.com/content/insanitizers-release-guitar-fun)

“There’s 22 tracks here with musical styling spanning straight ahead surf, Joe Meekish instrumentals, rautalanka, a harpsichord tune (I realize it’s probably not actually a harpsichord), and… man, I don’t know what. True to their name, it does sometimes feel like you’re going slightly insane. This is partly because of the every-idea-explored nature of of the music, partly because of their core style: a swirling guitar effect mess of reverb, delay, and probably a few other ingredients (I don’t play guitar) plus a relentless drum… Some may find their sound offputting, but it’s very much their own and often it just takes a bit of a mental adjustment before you’re enjoying it. I think the sound works best when they really overdo it, like on the swirling, free-floating “Loose Surfer” or the pounding “Robot Dance” or the wacked-out semi-cover “Misiglia”. But you might hear something different and think it works better! There’s so much going on on this record. If you feel like you need a curveball thrown into your surf listening, I think you should give this one a shot.”

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Reviewing “Guitar Fun” on Surfguitar101, Badger (Wes H.) writes:
With 22 tracks (mostly originals) there is much to choose from…The songs run the gamut from 1st wave “trad” surf to current-style melodic explorations, and all the way to the heavier…so, literally, something for everyone. Notable tracks include:

Shootout – Ominous surf, with a real Western kind of twang to it…

Dark Eyes Rock – I like the basic song anyway, and this one is definitely spiked up with plenty of good reverb. There is also a bit of non-traditional rhythm pattern that underlies the melody as well.

Rocket Pack – The guitar tones are substantial.

A Day in Tokyo – Meaty guitar, driving rhythm, growl & reverb.

Revel – Being another straight-ahead twangy tune I really like this one as well. Some serious tone resides in this guitar… A wonderful, unabashed slap-echo puts the cherry on top.

A Week in Hawaii – This is simply a very pretty tune that evokes its title; string up your hammock and kick back.

W-Ray Gun: Obviously a nod to Mr. Link Wray. This track is in that category of “heavier” that I can get into & takes the imagination…

…There are some tracks with multiple guitars, the use of a Roland Guitar Synthesizer, as well as a Washburn Idol with lipstick pickups (“Malaguena”).

The result is, as the title suggests, “Guitar Fun.” Enjoy.

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Our “Wild Surf Guitars” CD album.   Released Feb. 10, 2013:
Hear songs free below. Click title to start album play from there. To halt click vertical lines that appear inside circle. The song list scrolls up & down.
Get your physical CD from  CDBaby.com  DeepEddy.net  or DWMMusic.com

“Cry of the Coyote” CD review magazine from France gave the Insanitizers’ 20 song CD “Wild Surf Guitars” a “Cry of the Heart Award” with highest ratings.

“This CD lives up to its title. The guitars are often jangling wildly, the influences remain unchanged, so rockin’ surf fans will feast upon it. In addition, there’s a heap of tracks (20). So, what more could we ask? The most striking tracks, to my ears, are Disappearance, a threatening tune in the style of Link Wray, and the rockin’ surf tunes Risk On, Surfarian, Barbarous Deville, Feral Four and At the Beach.”

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Indiemusic.co gave “Wild Surf Guitars” a best new release award and enthusiastic review at indiemusic.co/2013/06/03/the-insanitizers-tame-the-wild-surf-guitars/

“The Insanitizers do a fine job throughout this latest CD, Wild Surf Guitars, of delivering memorable and aggressive songs that are true to form….

“Googleyes,” and “Surf Wall Street,” both sound familiar yet crisp in their attack. But with “Dragonfly,” we hear a great buzzy guitar tone, and are privy to some of the clever humor on display.

“Surfarian,” again displays quick wit with some clever back forth between the guitars and drums. “Skywriters,” is a laconic, unhurried number which is enjoyable to listen to…

If this was a throwback sixties beach film, and this band was the movies heroes, it’d wrap up like this: “The Insanitizers win this heat and take the tournament! The Insanitizers are new Kings of Wild Surf Guitars!”
Yeah; it’s like that.

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The British CD review magazine “New Gandy Dancer (NGD)” wrote:
Neat little band out of Vancouver, Washington on a busy surfing set with lots happening. It’s rewarding to hear a group dedicated to their art and the art here is genuine 1960s surf guitars, bass and drums. The all-original songs are simply soaked in high twanging, reverbed guitars and easy to remember melody lines. Don’t get the impression that these cuts are derivative — they’re not — they are an acknowledgment of a much neglected genre and a brave genre to tackle in 2013. Rating score 4 of 4.

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Another British CD review magazine “Pipeline” reported this about “Wild Surf Guitars”
“There may be quite a variety of sounds on this album from The Insanitizers but the recurring theme is of lively, intertwining guitars that swap leads and riffs with head-spinning fervour. Be it the repetitive jangle of “At the Beach,” the sparkling twang of “GooglEyes” or the frantic surf of “Surf Wall Street,” their aim seems to be to fry your brain…

“The most conventional track is “Man Hunter,” an acoustic take on the old cowboy western style. This provides a useful transition into the final three instrumentals…an acoustic guitar duo…The surf-flavoured “Undertow” works very well and the strongly rhythmic “Fantwango” round off the album very nicely.”

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The “Album Cover Hall of Fame” published a photo essay feature about the cover art for the Insanitizers music CDs including this one. Here is a link:
Featured Album Cover Fan Collection – Conrad Swartz, The Insanitizers

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“Wild Surf Guitars” was selected by Pandora Radio.. It is available from DWMMusic.com, CDBaby.com, DeepEddy.net, iTunes, and Amazon.

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Our “Whimsical Surf Version Two” CD.   Released January 2013:
Hear songs free below. Click title to start album play from there. To halt click vertical lines that appear inside circle. The song list scrolls up & down.
Get your physical CD from CDBaby.com   DeepEddy.net  or DWMMusic.com

“Cry of the Coyote” CD review magazine from France gave “Whimsical Surf Version Two” a “Cry of the Heart Award” with highest ratings.

“Conrad Swartz’s band decided to revisit the content of their previous album, while I await their next CD. This gives me the chance to appreciate the humor of such titles as “Polkzart” (the 40th symphony of Wolfgang Amadeus as a super fun polka), “Fantwango” (a rocking tango), and “Fowl ball” or “Beerocracy” (puns on “foul ball” and “bureaucracy”). I rediscovered versions of “Sugarplum” (“Dance of the Sugarplum Fairy” by Tchaikovsky) which rocks well and of “Puppetor” (“Funeral March of a Marionette” by Gounod) in flamenco rock style. They added supplementary guitars, changed the solos on some songs, and concocted new arrangements and new melodies on others. I was thrilled by the first version, but the second is even more rockin’ and the guitars gallop. Everything on this album is a keeper, what a great time for fans of rockin’ surf! “

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“New Gandy Dancer, the magazine for rock instrumental music” (“NGD”) from the U.K. issue 112, wrote:

Frantic, fun & full of guitar rock originals this is the second visit to NGD from Conrad Swartz, Mike Martin, Ralf Palin and Tim Ennis- The Insanitizers. Great tearing surf and driving instrumentals with some really nice covers secreted in there, like the theme from Alfred Hitchcock, “Mozart 40” and “The Sugar Plum Fairy” – all powered up of course!

“Dance Like A Robot” is a strong starter for ten, with its rollicking & rolling axes and “Waterboard Surfing” is a racey, wild surfer. “Hot Sauce” is a BIG sound reminiscent of Davie Allan’s material or indeed The Ventures’ “In Space” album. This set definitely can’t fail.” Rated 4 out of 4.

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SurfRockMusic.com ( http://www.surfrockmusic.com/insanitizers-whimsical-surf-version-2.html ) commented on each of the 17 tracks on this CD. Overall they wrote, “I got a lot of enjoyment out of listening to Whimsical Surf Version 2. It’s filled with fun, let’s-have-a-party music. Whimsical Surf Version 2 is guaranteed to put a smile on anybody’s face.”

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Pipeline CD review magazine from Great Britain wrote about this CD, “It’s a very lively set with a full-on approach featuring tough jangling guitars aplenty…an excellent take of Rossini’s William Tell Overture…mighty fine performance of Grieg’s In the Hall of the Mountain King.” Version 1 of this CD received a three-page feature and an enthusiastic review (“Sounds great…roaring surf-rock”) in Pipeline Magazine (Spring 2011), with mention on the front cover. About Version 1, ReverbCentral declared “Too Much Fun !” and the Vancouver Voice pronounced “Surf music in a frenzy.” Still, Version 2 outrocks Version 1.

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The “Album Cover Hall of Fame” published a photo essay feature about the cover art for the Insanitizers music CDs including this one. Here is a link:
Featured Album Cover Fan Collection – Conrad Swartz, The Insanitizers

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“Whimsical Surf Version Two” was selected by Pandora Radio. It is available from DWM Music , CD Baby Music, Deep Eddy Music, Bandcamp, iTunes, and Amazon.

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