Still fascinated with Smile . I can't bring it to work however--too hypnotic. I literally fall into a trance as I listen to it. I realize now that the elements are all represented, with Earth represented in "Vega-Tables," Fire in "Mrs. O'Leary's Cow," Wind in "Wind Chimes," Water in "In Blue Hawaii" (which was originally "cool Clear Water," and before that, was proposed as a Coke jingle). Is the fifth element "Good Vibrations"? I suspect so. It's a great way to end the album, although oddly enough, the song was not written by Van Dyke Parks. In fact, Van Dyke Parks and Brian Wilson have really only written two "hit" songs together (and I use that term very loosely)--"Heroes and Villains" and the incredible "Sail On Sailor" (one of the greatest pop songs ever written, which Wilson came up with while lying in bed, and Van Dyke recorded, unbeknownst to Brian).
What would have been interesting would have been to have used portions of the old tracks with the new studio tracks. Having young Brian's voice morph into old Brian would have been entirely fitting, giving the trippy, acid feel of this work of art.
Okay, anyway...interesting debates last night. What amazes me is that Edwards appears so young and vibrant, Cheney, old and grumpy...yet the two men are only 12 years apart in age. Weird. I have to believe that the appearance of youth and vitality will win out.