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Catch a wave

After all these many years, Brian Wilson's beach blanket symphonies and heart-rending, harmony-laden pop poems have become a genre unto themselves. Any pop writer with an eye on greatness has fallen beneath the sway of Wilson's immense talent at one time or another. And yet, no one has topped the thick, chordal genius of Wilson's best works -- "Pet Sounds," "Smile" and the like. Wilson has been only sporadically brilliant in the 40 years since he stopped touring as a Beach Boy, and the band lost most of its lustre without him. Which is why this summer's reunion tour is such a thrilling prospect for so many.

With a strong new album, "That's Why God Made the Radio," earning critical and commercial plaudits, and a road jaunt that finds the band performing more than 40 songs over twin sets each night, the buzz in Beach Boy land is at an all-time high.

The Beach Boys 50th Anniversary Tour touches down at 8 tonight at the Darien Lake Performing Arts Center. Remaining tickets range from $25 for lawn to $95 for the best reserved seats. Visit for yours.

-- Jeff Miers