October 1, 2009

Mod-A-Day: Mystic Eyes

If you like your garage rock tinged with folk rock and more jangly than growling then Mystic Eyes are for you. The New York band came together in the early 80s when lead singer Bernie Kugel had a song he wanted to submit to Voxx for their second Battle of the Garages comp. Don't know if they're named after the Van Morrison song, as it seems the name was bestowed on them by a friend. They were contemporaries of the Chesterfield Kings, and easily held their own alongside them, as well as among all of the best 80s garage revival acts. Late bands like The Funseekers always reminded me more of Mystic Eyes than those other bands.

Mystic Eyes did have a certain folk like vibe at times, but I always found them to be more bluesy with original rock-n-roll overtones. They had less of a punk ethos than some of the garage revival acts, and this softened them just enough to give them a more traditional sixties pop sound that went well with their love song lyrics. Songs like "Enough of What I Need" (the one from the BOG2 compilation), "I Lost My World" and the song here "My Time to Leave" were puncuated by swirling farfisa organ. The organ gave their songs an even more authentic sixties feel and added a nice psychadelic element. To get a good taste pick up the Our Time To Leave compilation from 1993.

Mystic Eyes -- My Time To Leave