May 31, 2012

The Leaves - War of Distortion (1966)

This California group was started by college-student Jim Pons who was inspired to form a band after hearing The Beatles on the radio. He gathered up his fraternity brothers and, none of them knowing an instrument, they taught themselves how to play. Their first gig was in a school gym on the same bill as Captain Beefheart and His Magic Band. They would later replace The Byrds, who had just been signed, as the house-band at a local nightclub until being discovered by Pat Boone. In November 1965, they became the first group to release the (now) rock standard “Hey Joe” and had a hit with it in 1966 when they released a re-recorded version. The group disbanded when Pons left to join The Turtles in 1967.

This song appeared on the group’s 1966 debut album, Hey Joe.

album art

The Leaves - War of Distortion (1966)

Loading the ABLYAM player...(Might not work on mobile devices)


The “War of Distortion” rages
Like a forest fire
Giant monsters scream and yell
And they never tire

The greedy hands of Mr. Lee
Makes the un-hips eardrums bleed

Simple folks, though wild appearing
The freaky fox with one gold earring

Things that make it
Things that dangle
Distorted sounds from every angle

Secret dreams exposed by night
Change the dimming to the light

Everything is like it seems
No crashing thunder from machines


  1. Sorry about this, Zolland, but I think I've found another slightly incorrect lyric. (It's tiny.)

    In the last line of the first verse I reckon the Roger McGuinn soundalike sings "And they never tire".

    1. You're right! That makes much more sense and I should have been able to figure that one out myself. But there's definitely no reason to apologize -- I love having an extra pair of ears verifying/fixing things. It's quite helpful; I appreciate it. =)

    2. Excellent. I wasn't sure if I was encroaching on your "turf", so to speak (i.e., "It's my blog, you upstart – how dare you swoop in with your high-falutin' comments. Be gone!")

      I'm glad you don't mind an occasional second pair of ears.

      Thanks, Zolland.