REVIEWS

Reviews of Reckoning

"Blue Light continues Surftone's tenacious tradition of distilling '60s culture into engaging, economic bytes (and blasts) of sand and sunblock-friendly rock"
- Pete Roche, The Examiner

"In her new six-song EP "Reckoning," surf guitar icon Susan SurfTone takes surf rock to a haunting and beautiful place it's never been before. With characteristic mastery, SurfTone gives each song life and depth. From the album's hypnotic opener "Mojo Junction," to its closing "Mystery Train"--a skillful homage to one of her earliest influences--SurfTone shows once again that she's not just the reigning Queen of Surf Rock, but that she could topple any Surf Rock King from his throne."
- Mary Pauline Lowry, Huffington Post

"...her intricate guitar work and good ear for melody certainly distinguish her in the surf guitar world and suggest just how talented she is on the instrument."

- Jeff Niesel, Whopperjaw

"She's the real deal...Her guitar playing is so impressive. Reckoning... just brings her to the top in her field..."

- Ginger Coyote, Punk Globe

"Top-ten material in this reviewer's universe, with its notably sharp and slick pop/rock collisions."

- Kevin McGovern, Fear and Loathing in Long Beach

"Reckoning is twenty-five minutes of intimate, authentic surf rock bliss whose DIY methodology and deliriously accessible tunes celebrate how far SurfTone has come - and hint at where she may go next."

- Peter Roche, Cleveland Music Examiner

"The Ventures of the new millennium are here! Great guitar tone and tuneful melody, structured and arranged in fine detail will revive the kind of music. The title track Reckoning, Vortex with the tremolo guitars, Mystery Train - a racy tune, a cranky tune, capturing every mood; brilliant go get a copy for yourself."

- Ricky Kej, 2015 Grammy® Winner - Best New Age Album "Winds of Samsara" - Amazon review

Reviews of Too Far

"With Too Far she's delivered an instrumental album in which none of the songs sound the same, and one that will be as appealing to dedicated surf guitar fans as it is to those less familiar with the genre...As a whole, Too Far stands as both a revival of the genre and a testament to the fact that a woman can bring extraordinary talent and contemporary creativity to the classic, traditionally male world of surf rock."
- Mary Pauline Lowry, The Huffington Post

"On her new album Too Far, her prowess is beyond reproach."
- Lee Zimmerman, Blurt

"SurfTone evinces such a mastery over her instrument, it's hard to believe there's anything she can't do. In fact, Too Far is an album that's so alive with style, verve and innovation, it may very well singlehandedly revive the genre. "Start Again" is a blast of surfside swagger, "Salt Water" snakes along with perfect pipeline prowl and a janglefest of handclaps and endless shimmy, "Jiffy Pop" is one of the catchiest songs of the year.
- Alex Green, Caught In The Carousel

"Too Far's final track, which is incredible, is a country blues meets surf rock ballad, "What A Shame," which turns out to be an early Rolling Stones original. Covering this little known diamond was not only a wonderful surprise as a Stones song I had forgotten, but it solidifies Susan's willingness to take chances with material and surpass any expectations of what a surf rock album can or should be. This is the same type of thinking that will ensure that her music will one day be as classic as those artists of the past that have influenced her."
- Robert Jaz, Forces of Geek

Susan Surftone is back better than ever... Playing her surf magic guitar to everyone's delight. There are 14 tracks on this fantastic CD. When I started off with Start Again I closed my eyes and really felt like Gidget (Sally Field) did when she first met her Moon Doggie Jeff in Malibu.. Each track rules... Proving that Susan Surftone is the new Dick Dale.... It is so wonderful to see a female prevail in a male dominated music genre... Words can not explain what a talent she is... sit back and enjoy.. You will feel just like Chiclet from the movie "Psycho Beach Party" or maybe Ann Bowman!!!!
- Ginger Coyote, Punk Globe

"Susan Surftone is no stranger to our proceedings here. Her new album "Too Far" redefines surf guitar for a new generation with a sexual bombast of guitar slinging and Watusi beats that makes one hunger for a dangerous and lustful summer. With go-go dancer extraordinaire, Seana Steele and the precise smash-bop of drummer Steve Kravac, this release gets your inhibitions feeling loose while filling the libido with plenty of edgy surf-pop damaged soundscapes. The synergy of sunshine and dark night clubs lights up the murky alleyway in the world of Susan's song structures that rock and shake with a fun and sinister swagger. I am desperately seeking more bands like this in 2013."
- Kevin McGovern, Fear and Loathing in Long Beach

Reviews of Shore


"...Shore, a terrific collection of surf rock tunes that—believe it or not—don't all sound the same."
- Jeff Niesel, Whopperjaw

"Susan, indeed, is one of the late masters of old-style, pre-psychedelic surf guitar."
- Ron Garmon, SF Weekly

"The material is chockablock full of strong melodies on tracks like the Doors-quoting "Shore" and the dance-along number "Checker" as well as classics-in-the-making cuts like "Tide," "Chance" and "Subduction."
- Doug Simpson, Campus Circle

"I would honestly put her up against any of the greats, she is truly that amazing... The album is 12 songs in length, and every single song is utterly amazing and the album just gets better and better, not only as each song goes into the next, but also each time you listen to it."
- Mark Lewis, Rock Over America

"A crackling collection of instrumental surf and garage tunes..."
- Robert Ham, The Oregon Music News

"Susan SurfTone does a marvelous job on Shore with not only the rupturing guitar and percussion, but also the production. She is a musician who certainly knows what she's doing when it comes down to creating a musical composition. With this unique surfer music, SurfTone is keeping alive a genre that solely revolves around the importance of the music."
- Kayla Yandoli, Verbicide

"She plays great surf guitar...and there is not a sinker on this gem...The last track is The Doors' "Riders On The Storm" and she makes Jim Morrison proud..."
- Ginger Coyote, Punk Globe

"Lesbian guitar goddess Susan Surftone certainly lives up to her name on "Shore." Like a female Dick Dale, Surftone rides the rocking and rolling waves of surf guitar, hanging 10 on the frets and strings. You can practically smell the ocean and surfboard wax on such original tracks as "Jade," "Tide," "Compression," "Chance," "Subduction" and her cover of the Doors' "Riders on the Storm."
- Gregg Shapiro, Wisconsin Gazette.com

"Her bouncy track "Chance" made me want to grab a surfboard, while the blistering guitar solo on "Subduction" made we want to learn a few chords. But it's "Compression" that has me pressing repeat."
- Shannon, Bust Blog

"Modern acts have incorporated the surf vibes into their music with the twangy reverbed out fender sound and the extended snare drum rolls but few have set out to make a full on surf album. Susan SurfTone has stepped up and done so with "Shore." 11 tracks with one word titles all under 4 minutes finished off with a 12th; a killer 7 minute plus instrumental cover of The Doors' "Riders on the Storm." The amps are cranked on this album and the kitschy vibes are authentic.The craftsmanship is superb, nailing the 60's instrumental sound with some fantastic guitar playing from Susan. This is a modern surf gem that deserves a place alongside those dusty Ventures records."
Ross Severson, R.A.D. Vinyl

"The sound is great and Susan really rips on guitar. It's just fun to listen to. Over and over. She's gotta be the Queen of the Surf Guitar"
- Jim Kaplan, Record Collector News

"Susan has been making music that sounds like liquid sunshine since the 80s. In that time she has managed to maintain the magic and whimsy that embodied 60s surf rock while embracing musical changes around her. At this stage in the game many artists either don't have anything interesting left to say, or are content to rest on their laurels and let their reputation fuel the wave a nostalgia dollars that comes their way. But Susan has found a way to keep her music as fresh, fun and exciting as it was the day she picked up a guitar for the first time."
- Sameerah Blue, Ectomag

"Portlander Susan SurfTone (Yasinski) demonstrates enviable chops and a keen understanding of instrumental elegance... And unlike a lot of flashy upstarts, SurfTone's approach is incisive and restrained; she eschews flurries of notes in favor of a tasteful fluidity that bobs and weaves like a buoy in stormy seas."
- John Chandler, Portland Monthy (Blog)

"...her light 'n' loungey style also recalls the influence jazzers like Johnny Smith and Charlie Christian had on the Ventures' Bob Bogle and Don Wilson and other early surf players."
- Peter Aaron, Chronogram

"If you feel all twanged out and don't want to catch the next wave of surf rock, you haven't heard this." (7) J.C.
- John Cummins, Montreal Mirror

Susan Surftone explores garage rock at the beach house on her 12-track endeavor SHORE. Subtle layers of organ assist Surftone's crystal clear guitar tone to drop sunshine ("Checker") on vintage rock rhythms that swing with the swagger of an after dark rock 'n roll soiree ("Chance"). Harkening back to the 50's and 60's for influence, Surftone keeps the tiki bar sound at the forefront with bluesy licks and a surf rock backbone ("Subduction") providing the foundation for her amalgamation of musical inspiration.
- Mike SOS, Ear Candy

"This is what instrumental experimentation sounded like before punk, psyche and feedback rewrote the songbook."
- Roctober Magazine Reviews

"Asking little from the listener but to sit back and enjoy, "Shore" is a real day at the beach."
- Winnie McCroy, The Edge Magazine, Dig These Discs

"She's clearly adroit with her weapon of choice, mixing skill with feeling in ways too many guitar slingers sacrifice for fiery flashes of wankery, and her backing band give her all the room she needs to shine."
- Jimmy Alvarado, Razorcake

"She's the undisputed queen of immersive, garage-influenced, instrumental third-wave surf-rock, delivered with all the velocity of a punk show and a swaggering stage presence that has more in common with the lineage of bad-ass lady guitarists SurfTone's clearly embedded in than it does with the puka-shelled passivity you might typically associate with surf guitar."
- Ellen Cushing, East Bay Express (San Francisco)

"My staff pick for this week is an all instrumental piece from one of the best chick guitar players I have heard. Renowned producer Steve Kravac brought out something great in Susan and the album is a great cure for some cold winter blues."
- A.J. Rivera, The Silver Tongue Online

"Yasinski's wordless—but always engaging—aquatic-themed adventure recalls Summer 1964 without sacrificing 21st century sheen."
- Pete Roche, The Cleveland Sound

"An instrumental album, Shore is a wonderful melding of both a familiar surf rock sound along with a less expected garage punk/trash rock sprinkling on some tracks, so that the album lifts everything a leap away from the predictable, becoming something that sparks my ears which always love a well worked fresh juxtaposition of genres."
- Robert Jaz, Forces Of Geek

"Shore is incredibly chill, and never overwhelming."
Cody Hudson, Slug Magazine

"...beyond competent and with signature moves from Ms. SurfTone on lead guitar all over it."
- Doug Mosurock, Still Single - Dusted Magazine

"With an impressive number of albums and worldwide tours on her resume, SurfTone is playing live again for the first time in a very long time, on the weight of her excellent 2011 album Shore, a collection of bouncy, instrumental surf tunes that are notable for their wholly unironic qualities as much as their sturdiness."
- Ryan J. Prado, Portland Mercury

"Susan Surftone (nee Yasinski) may not play surf music with the guitar-string torturing speed of Dick Dale or the punkish exuberance of Los Straitjackets, but there's something about her laid-back, clear-eyed guitar tone that goes down sweet and smooth like a well mixed frozen cocktail. In that respect, the songs on her 2011 album Shore recall no less than the unheralded kings of instrumental rock the Ventures. Like that long-running group, Susan Surftone is a keen interpreter of other's work (Shore features a sparkling cover of "Riders On The Storm") and her originals maintain a feeling of buoyant, crystal blue bliss."
- Robert Ham, Willamette Week

"The album kicks off with the song "Shore," coasting in atop a throwback '60s organ that might have felt at home on an old British Invasion or U.S. garage band tune. SurfTone plays not only a clean, effects-free guitar, but also the organ and bass on the album."
- Jake Ten Pas, The Oregonian

"SurfTone has made Portland her home for more than a decade now, and has put out an engaging, upbeat solo album titled, "Shore," which will immediately send you to the beach for some serious blanket bingo."
- Rob Cullivan, Portland Tribune

"Yasinski's compositions use the surf format not only to deploy lotsa great riffs in concise structures...but also to explore how to balance four instruments so that they mesh like perfectly fitted cogs in a finely calibrated machine."
- Steve Holtje, Culture Catch

"You get the sense that surf is Susan's native tongue, and any other musical material she wants to use is going through that filter first... what's most striking about "Shore" is that it's not a party record -- more of a listening album, with an air of moody melancholy hiding behind the thumping surf beat."
- Ken Shimamoto, "Stash Dauber,"

"It is without question an entry into surf rock's canon, but it's one that side-steps a great deal of the retro fetishizing and garish camp that often accompanies genres so heavily indebted to the past."
- Graham Scala, RVA Magazine