When the mercury starts rising (do people still have thermometers with mercury in them?) I reach for The Bees’ first record, Sunshine Hit Me. The Bees are from the Isle of Wight, and Sunshine Hit Me, recorded in a garden shed and released almost ten years ago in the UK, is perfect summer pop.
I think they knew what they were doing; there’s a cover of an Os Mutantes song which has since popped up in advertisements, quite a lot of fresh tinkling keyboards, and flashes of reggae to lift the spirits. There’s even a song called ‘Sunshine’. Sadly, there’s nothing from the record in listenable quality on youtube, although the Bee’s myspace site has snatches of a couple of tracks (‘Punchbag’ abd ‘Town Version’) from it.
Above all, they just sound as if they’re having a good time, which is one of the essential components of a summer record. The Beach Boys used to sound as if they were having a good time even though we know now that they weren’t.