The Movin' Morfomen were a New Mexico-based garage band formed by five Espanola High School classmates, Dave Rarick (guitar, keyboards, vocals), Rudy Maestas (guitar, vocals), Anthony Martinez (bass), Danny Gavurnick (trumpet, guitar, vocals), and Ed Valdez (drums), in the mid-1960's. Their influences ranged from the Beatles to garage bands like the Standells, although one can also feel the shaping hand of Buddy Holly and Bobby Fuller in some of their music. Their sound was alternately romantic and punk, depending on the song-Dave Rarick wrote a lot of their songs-and they were as good at singing the three-part harmonies as they were at playing the crunchy guitar parts.
The band's name, incidentally, came about through a roadie nicknamed "Morfo, " because he liked monster movies and enjoyed imitating their title creatures-signed to a gig and lacking a name, they hastily declared themselves the Movin' Morfomen. The name didn't stop them from cutting and releasing five singles, some of which did extremely well locally on radio and got them a regional following, bringing them gigs throughout New Mexico and the surrounding region. All of those records showed significant musical attributes and serious musical development, embracing even pychedelia with relative ease and success. Near the end of 1967, the band became less of a cohesive unit and ceased being a full-time activity, as several of the members began drifting into other activities. Ironically, the group held its sound together amazingly well across several changes in musical taste and style, only to see its membership dissolve. By July of 1969, it was over for the group, except as an occasional venture in the studio with a few of the core members, and after 1971 even that ceased. In the 1990's, however, Dave Rarick, Dan Gavurnik, and Ed Valdez continue to perform in New Mexico as the Flashbacks. ~ Bruce Eder, All Music Guide
1. Run Girl Run 2. When You Were Mine 3. Don't Go Baby 4. Only The Young 5. We Tried, Try It 6. Write Me A Letter 7. What I'm Going Through 8. What's Happened To Me 9. Its Not The Same 10. Think For Yourself 11. Thinking Of You 12. People Gotta Love One Another 13. Who Do You Think Of? 14. You, Me, And KBOM Radio 15. A Santa Fe Song 16. Back When You Were Mine 17. Leaving Love Behind
A dozen songs by the Movin' Morfomen that would've made a great album then, and comes off extremely well even today. Dave Rarick's songwriting crossed styles and songs with Lennon & McCartney ("When You Were Mine") and the Standells ("Run Girl Run"), and even the Searchers ("Don't Go Baby") with equal (and considerable) success. The playing was all about as good as anything this side of the best Ed Cobb productions of the period, and the drumming better than that (Eddie Valdez will wear you out listening to his patterns and fills. As a bonus, beyond those dozen, are a quartet of decent songs by the Flashbacks, the modern incarnation of the Morfomen's core membership. The notes are a little fragmentary in their editing, but otherwise reasonably thorough, and some of the reproduced period artwork is a treat as well. ~ Bruce Eder, All Music Guide