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In Boston, back in the early 70s, Jeff “Monoman” Conolly formed a punk rock band called DMZ. That band was heavily influenced by the 60s garage band sounds that were popularized by Lenny Kaye’s superbly curated Nuggets compilation. After a couple of years, Conolly dropped DMZ and took his garage band strategy up a notch with his next band – Lyres.
Their best song – and today’s Song of the Week – was “Don’t Give It Up Now.”
I remember going to see them at the now defunct Inn Square Men’s Bar in Cambridge, MA with my friend Phil H. in the early 80s. When they played “Don’t Give It Up Now”, the sweat, energy and excitement in the room was palpable; a truly memorable experience
Their trademark sound comes from Monoman’s hair raising and nearly unintelligible vocals, his Vox Continental organ playing chords with one hand, and his insistent tambourine played with the other. When you add in the vintage sound Danny McCormack draws out of his Danelectro guitar, you’d swear you were listening to an early Kinks cut or something by the 13th Floor Elevators.
Some time ago, when writing about The Only Ones’ “Another Girl, Another Planet” I remarked “… I can honestly say I’ve never turned anyone onto this song that didn’t instantly and for always fall in love with it. It’s that good!” The same can be said about “Don’t Give It Up Now.”
Enjoy… until next week.