“Finally someone has put out an anthology of the four 45’s by one of the most talented yet mysterious combos in 60’s garage rock& roll. To me this is the most important 60’s re-issues since The Misunderstood’s “Before The Dream Faded.”
As it turns out The Dovers hailed from Santa Barbara, California and their full story is told in detail in the excellent liner notes that accompany this mini-album. Their tale is a familiar one in the 60’s garage rock landscape, the boys came together in the early 60’s inspired by The Ventures, Beatles, Byrds etc. cut a few classic 45’s then disappeared into obscurity only to be re-discoverd in the late 70’s via the first onslaught of 60’s garage compilations.
Three of The Dovers four 45’s were issued on the tiny Miramar label and are some of the rarest and most sought after 60’s garage discs. Their second single the splendid Beau Brummels-ish “People Ask Me Why” b/w “I Could Be Happy” was picked up by major label Reprise but it never caught a whiff of the charts and it was around this time that The Dovers had a chance encounter with Byrds guitarist (and professional asshole) David Crosby.
But what makes The Dovers so special?, well it’s probably their sheer songwriting originality. The Dovers sound is a mixed bag of influences that could include The Byrds, Beau Brummels, Beatles and possibly The Zombies. To my ears they sound like The Byrds fronted by The Undertones lead singer Feargal Sharkey.
The group’s first coupling of “She’s Gone” b/w “What Am I Gonna Do” is a stunning debut loaded to the brim with teenage tension and desire. Both songs were featured on the early Pebbles samplers in somewhat dubious sound quality, so it’s so nice to hear them here at their proper speed. The Dovers lead singer (and mystery man) Tim Granada had a truly unique voice that is really haunting especially on this disc.
The group’s most progressive recording featured “The Third Eye” b/w “Your Love.” “The Third Eye” is simply incredible, try to imagine a fusion of The Byrds “8 Miles High”, The Rolling Stones “Paint It Black” with a healthy dose of 1966 Yardbirds sprinkled on top, quite simply 60’s pop doesn’t get any better than this! The flipside “Your Love” is the only track the was new to me here and it’s a stone knockout! It has a wonderful melody and hookline and will burn your brain with one listen.
The group’s final 45 “She’s Not Just Anybody” is possibly their best, this one combines a top shelf Granada vocal with lead guitarist Bruce Clawson’s ringing guitar lines. The Flip “About Me” is also quite good and features another neat solo by Clawson.
So there you have it The Dovers story is finally told. What’s next? How about a Caretakers Of Deception album!!!!