The Beach Boys Pet Sounds Capitol The combination of LSD and The Beatles' Rubber Soul reportedly yields quite astounding results. But when Brian Wilson sat down with the album and a tab of acid, he set the framework for one of pop music's greatest albums, and one that continues to influence bands in almost all of rock's many sub-genres today. After hearing Rubber Soul in December 1965, Wilson was so moved that he ran to his wife yelling that he wanted to 'make the greatest rock album of all time'. He was inspired by what he described as 'a whole album with all good stuff'. Anybody who sets the goal of creating the best rock album in history is facing quite a task already, but for a man flanked by the rest of the members of the Beach Boys - a bunch hardly known for their contributions to intelligent masterpieces of rock - the challenge must have seemed absurd. Luckily for Wilson, though, he had sworn off touring after a nervous breakdown in 1964 and, while the rest of the band were performing songs about surfing to teens in Japan, he quietly created a masterpiece in his own introspective and psychotropic-friendly image. He worked fast. Within two months the rest of the band returned to California to find most of the album Pet Sounds pre-recorded, and some of them were more than a little peeved. Why, after all, mess with a formula that consistently produced hit singles? But Wilson was the songwriter and his self-belief in this instance rubbed off on the band. As well as his introverted and thoughtful lyrics, Wilson's use of 'the studio as an instrument' was another factor that set the album apart from the band's previous releases. He incorporated samples from household items and animal noises. The end of the album finishes with the sound of Wilson's dogs barking. The devotion to extensive layering on the backing tracks still resonates today with rock bands of every genre; California punk bank NOFX are vocal fans of the production style. Even today, the band have a tendency to layer several vocal tracks over their otherwise aggressive punk songs. Much to Wilson's dismay though, the album failed to achieve the popular success in the US he had hoped for, peaking at just No 10 in the charts. In Europe it did considerably better, however, and it was not long before the album's influence was felt elsewhere. The album upped the ante for John Lennon and Paul McCartney's writing style and, in an acknowledgement of their appreciation of Wilson's efforts, The Beatles included the sound of a dog whistle on Sgt Pepper's Lonely Hearts Club Band. When Wilson, by then in a state of mental disrepair, listened to the new Beatles record at his home, his dogs would once again begin to bark. McCartney once said in an interview: 'There's going to be one dog and his owner, and I'd just love to be there when his ears prick up.'