I disagree. I find it quite inferior to the self-titled; the blame goes to the pointless Beach Boys remakes, the lyricists who occasionally supplied Brian with stinking shit-cheese (hi, Jimmy Buffett), and above all Joe Thomas being the producer. Say what you want about the outdated eighties-ness of the self-titled, that one at least made me feel Andy Paley was a good match for Brian, but Joe here just seems to push Brian towards an excessively sterile, MOR sound (occasionally verging on sounding like the songs have had all life rehearsed out of them), which really detracts from the good songwriting on display. I mean, at least Andy indulged Brian's farther-out moments like "Little Children" and "Rio Grande" , and provided some power to go with the pop, but Joe just strikes me as trying too hard to streamline him. (I noticed the lack of even baroque pop elements [like Brian's old standby timpani and sleigh bells] on too many songs, replaced by cheesy keyboard imitations.)
This could've been a Beach Boys album if only their inner politics weren't so fucked up, I'm so angry, this would've been the Beach Boys' saving grace. Instead we get Mike Love, Bruce Johnston and David Marks of the Beach Boys Salute Nascar. Fucking ridiculous.