Julian Cope presents Head Heritage

The Brogues - The Brogues

The Brogues


Released 1996 on Sundazed
Reviewed by Dave Furgess, 28/07/2007ce


1. Someday (2:14)
2. But Now I Find (2:15)
3. I Ain't No Miracle Worker (2:46)
4. Don't Shoot Me Down (2:19)

Personnel:

Eddie Rodrigues-guitar
Bob Segarini-guitar, vocals
Gary Grubb (aka Gary Duncan)-guitar, vocals
Rick Campbell-bass guitar
Bill Whittington-guitar
Greg Elmore-drums

This 7 inch EP came as a God-send to me as it brought together the two ultra rare 45's by this Merced, California group that is always associated with Quicksilver Messenger Service (QMS members Greg Elmore & Gary Duncan were Brogues members.) The Brogues are usually roped together with groups from nearby San Jose such as The Chocolate Watchband, Mourning Reign, Harbinger Complex, Count 5 etc. The Brogues were quite similar to those groups in that they specialized in tough, R&B based garage rock in the mold of The Yardbirds, Rolling Stones & Pretty Things.

The group's first 45 issued in 1965 on both the Twilight & Challenge label coupled "Someday" with "But Now I Find." Both songs were instant classics, "Someday" had a folk-punk approach that brought together the styles of The Beau Brummels & The Standells with a smooth rockin' beat. "But Now I Find" is a pure punker with a very unusual rhythm and beat. Both sides of this first single are original, tough and confident.

For their second 45 The Brogues chose to cover Mantz & Tucker's "I Ain't No Miracle Worker" (also covered by The Chocolate Watchband and later by The Barracudas.) The Brogues reading of the song has a much more uptempo arrangement that features a Graham Bond style organ and a stinging lead guitar break (probably played by the always underrated Gary Duncan.) However it is the flipside "Don't Shoot Me Down" that is the best track of the bunch. This song is a complete garage-punk monster that is in the same league as Pretty Things crushers like "Come See Me" , "LSD" & "Midnight To Six Man." This numbers just snarls at you with it's menacing guitar action and snotty vocals.

Sadly that was all she wrote for The Brogues who splintered after these 2 sensational 45's which are collected here on this ace EP (which should be still available at Sundazed Records.) Of course Duncan and Elmore would later show up with Quicksilver Messenger Service who actually played music quite similar to The Brogues in their early days. This EP is a very important piece of late 60's Bay area history. Be sure to hear it!


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