Psychotic Waltz is a progressive metal band formed in El Cajon, California in 1988. The first incarnation of the band was under the name Aslan, after a character in the novel The Lion, the Witch and the Wardrobe by C. S. Lewis. With money earned from local shows and T-shirt sales, they recorded a self-titled demo tape in 1986. After discovering another band with the same name, they changed theirs to Psychotic Waltz and recorded a new four-song demo in 1988. In 1990, they debuted with their independently financed debut A Social Grace, which was released in Europe via a licensing deal with the German label Rising Sun Productions. The album was very well received in Europe, being named album of the month in some European magazines..
Although the Crusaders could not have known it at the time, their recording of "Street Life" (which features a memorable vocal by Randy Crawford) was a last hurrah for the 20-year old group. Their recordings of the next few years would decline in interest until the band gradually faded away in the '80s. However this particular set is well worth picking up for the 11-minute title cut and there is good playing by the three original members (Wilton Felder on tenor, soprano and electric bass, keyboardist Joe Sample and drummer Stix Hooper) along with guitarist Barry Finnerty; horn and string sections, plus additional guitarists are utilized on Sample's commercial but listenable arrangements.
California may be the largest state in the Union, but it's only one state nuzzling one ocean, with only so many people living near the coastline, and a small minority of them have attempted to navigate waves on a board, much less possess the fetching physique to do so in public. Obviously, then, surf music isn't for surfers. If it were, Rhino would put out a greatest-hits EP instead of a four-disc box set. Cowabunga! is all the permanent-wave stuff most people will ever need.