Barry McGuire: “Eve of Destruction”

Posted: November 10, 2013 in THE CLASH of Cover Tunes
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Broc 4L

Broccoli For Miles And Miles And Miles And Miles And Miles … Oh Yeah!

The Original

Barry McGuire:


The Cover Songs Competition


The Pogues vs. Johnny Thunders


The Pogues:

Johnny Thunders:

Oh the disharmony! Much like Harlan County there are no neutrals here. Only one cover tune will live to play another day and it is your solemn responsibility to decide which one prevails. So tell me … Which Side Are You On?!!?

Also, keep in mind that if you should spontaneously self-actualize while playing a cover then you could – and probably should – nominate it for Top 10 (i.e. “Impeccable”) consideration.



Votes can be cast up to seven days from the day and time of the original post.

Disclaimer: Votes cast from Florida may or may not be counted.

  1. Pete Black says:

    I had forgotten that Johnny Thunders had covered Eve Of Destruction. I love his acoustic stuff. So against my image of the NY Dolls aggressive electric attack. Love his ease of style while maintaining the tempo and melody of the original. Then when hearing the Pogues I was impressed by the slowing of the tune with plucked banjo and harmonica. Wise choice to change it up and let Shane work his magic. Then, I listened to both again and Shane, as much as he is an icon to me, is ruining this by his lack of even pronouncing or remembering. Is this pitiful self parody, what some fans love/think is funny/par for the course? As much as the sound of his voice and the tone of the Pogues is heavenly to me, I had to vote J Thunders.

  2. Kerry Black says:

    I love my boy Shane. He’s been known to be somewhat sloppy at times, but to his legion of fans, that can be seen as part of his idiosyncratic charm. This, alas, is too sloppy and careless for my sensibilities. While I acknowledge this will cost me dearly with my constituents, my vote goes to Johnny.

  3. RDubbs says:

    I really like this old song. Most critics have panned it as a feeble attempt to replicate Dylan. Well it was 1965 and any character with an acoustic guitar and half a brain wanted to be Dylan. I mean, c’mon, who wouldn’t want to have been Dylan? The song was well-written and McGuire did a nice job on vocals.

    I actually did not realize until today that McGuire did not write the song and his version was not even the first. Oh the shame! The whole story will come out next time we entertain the Eve of Destruction.

    But the problem at hand is how the heck do you choose between these two halfhearted renditions? When I saw that The Pogues covered this song I was quite excited to hear their version. Well, to understate, I expected a lot more. Similarly I also expected Thunders to remember more than one or two verses of the song (although, in retrospect, it was clearly an absurd assumption on my part to expect Johnny to remember much of anything at that point in his twisted career).

    I don’t know. I guess I’ll go with JT. At least his is a spirited effort in the fragment of the song he chose to sing. But whoever wins this competition is in a heap of trouble should their defense happen to come against The Dickies!

  4. Arnold Plotnick says:

    I always loved this song, and had it on a 45 in my little singles box. Not too many songs with the word “coagulatin'” in it. The Pogues version is really poor and sloppy, a real toss-away that adds nothing. Johnny Thunders version is surprisingly poignant, although he really abbreviates the song, leaving out the best verses. Interestingly, did you know that the song inspired an “answer song” that I vaguely remember my sister talking about. It was called “Dawn of Correction” by The Spokesmen. They then changed their name to The Spykysmyn and half of them died in a fiery plane crash.

  5. Arnold Plotnick says:

    Oh my goodness… I found Dawn of Correction on YouTube:

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