The Beach Boys Love You

The chief problem with this album is the immature lyrics from a band (and a writer) then in their mid-30s; see also Adult/Child. The songs bop along ("Mona," "Honkin' Down the Highway," "Airplane") as if Brian Wilson hadn't a care since 1960, the synthesizers kind of work with the whole childlike feel (especially the purring growls in "I'll Bet He's Nice"), and some of the more whimsical pieces ("Johnny Carson," "Solar System") even evince a rudimentary sort of wit. But the intermittent fixation on young lust ruins the whole thing: when they talk about what they're gonna do "when her momma ain't around" ("Roller Skating Child"), even their attempts at something more mature ("The Night Was So Young") just feel gross, and even worse when the singing's bad ("Let's Put Our Hearts Together," "Love Is A Woman"). Even considering love as an abstract concept, with that context you wonder if the whole thing in "I Wanna Pick You Up" — apparently sung to a young kid — isn't actually one big pedophilic double entendre. This album is inappropriately entertaining in the way a lecherous old man shouldn't be, and musically it's definitely better than anything else they put out around this time, but that wouldn't be a very high bar. (Content: mild adult themes.)