This Was the Official Website for Pugwash from 2015 - 2016
But No More!


 

This was the official website for Pugwash, an Irish pop band fronted by Drimnagh-born musician Thomas Walsh.


In 2017 Walsh disbanded the group line-up and returned to being a solo artist under the Pugwash moniker.
The content is from the site's 2015 - 2016 archived pages.

 



Pugwash Hung Myself Out To Dry

"Pugwash, at their best, are almost Beatle-like in their greatness. They are THAT good."

− Andy Partridge (XTC)

 

 

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“Pugwash
Thomas Walsh
“Pugwash
Tosh Flood
“Pugwash
Shaun “Mac” McGee
“Pugwash
Joey Fitzgerald
 

 

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HOMETOWN

Dublin, Ireland

 

“Ireland”

 

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BIOGRAPHY

Thomas Walsh

A Choice Music Prize, Meteor and Ivor Novello nominated songwriter having been the
driving force behind his cult powerpop outfit PUGWASH for ten years and recently being one half of the cricket loving pop duo
‘THE DUCKWORTH LEWIS METHOD’ with musical partner Neil Hannon. Thomas was born in his parents house in Drimnagh in 1969.
“Lazy bugger even then I was, not wanting to go to the hospital to be born”.

As men landed on the moon and the sixties were officially coming to a grand musical close at Woodstock, Thomas set about listening to
all the classic pop music that was streaming forth literally every week from his parents TV, radio and stereo. “My brothers started to
bring Al Stewart, Mike Oldfield, Queen and E.L.O records into the house along with Roy Wood, Slade and Gilbert O’Sullivan ones that my
Mam and Dad already had there…..you can see why I’m steeped in a love of great pop!”.Thomas, in his guise as PUGWASH has released
7 albums in ten years and been given numerous accolades..one of which is still a ‘goosepimple’ moment for him. “Back in 2006 Brian Wilson’s
manager David Leaf obtained my e-mail through an acquaintance and sent me a mail saying that Brian loved my track ‘It’s Nice to Be Nice’
and as he was coming to Dublin to play in Vicar Street he’d love to meet me. MEET ME!!?? He came, I met Brian, he said ‘Hey! You’re
the nice to be nice guy’, I said ‘Yes’ and he said ‘Great song’…..I still think it was all a fantastic dream to be honest”.

 

Joey Fitzgerald

Born at home in Coolock on the Northside of Dublin on December 13th 1972. Seen Marc Bolan and T.Rex perform “Get It On” on TV and was immediately addicted to music and wanted to be in a band. Started playing guitar at age 10 but by 12 had accidentally stumbled to the drums and things got interesting then!
Learned to play along to records on the old Reynolds Record Player at full volume by The Beatles, The Specials, Elvis Costello and the Attractions and old Stax, Ska and Reggae 45’s while the vibrations going through the floor made the records jump and skip as well as the neighbor’s heads!
Same year seen him start his first band and enlisting his mate Tosh Flood on guitar in a musical friendship that lasts till this day. They played in bands together for years till Tosh asked Joey to join “Dodo” which after some dodgy name changes settled on a even dodgier one..”Saville”, who released 3 albums in 8 years and toured Ireland and some European countries. Saville disbanded in 2009 and after some time away from playing was asked by Thomas Walsh to play some shows with Pugwash and the rest, as you know, is Geography..Whheeuurrgghh!

 

Tosh Flood

Born at home in Coolock on Dublin’s Northside on the 17th March 1970.
From a family of 9 – 5 sisters and 3 brothers.
There was always music playing in our house, my Da loved country music (Hank Williams being a favourite) and Rock’n’Roll and my Ma loved Elvis and Opera. Both parents used to dance around the sitting room to Dusty Springfield records while all the kids sat on the floor watching them (we hadn’t got enough chairs for everyone). They were both great dancers too!
My earliest musical memory is T-Rex on TV and my aunties playing their records out in the house.
Another early childhood memory is sitting around the radiogram listening to the UK Top 30 run downs on a Sunday. Sometime in 1976, my Da got a HiFi Stereogram. Lots of lights but not as romantic as the radiogram.The first time I remember hearing The Jam was in 1979 with “The Eton Rifles” during one of those tune in’s.
My oldest sister, Linda used to buy the pop records of the day… Blondie, The Specials, The Jam, The Pretenders, Madness. So all of those were my first musical loves.
The first single I bought with my own money was “Start!” by The Jam and the first album was “Sound Affects” also by The Jam.
Through them I got my love of the Small Faces.
Joined Joey’s band when I was 16 and we learned how to play over a number of years until we gave up to join the circus.
I got asked to make an album with Ken O’Duffy and his brother Vinny which eventually under the name “Dodo”, we talked Joey into joining and that became “Saville”.
We released an EP some singles and albums to some acclaim until disbanding in 2009.
Met Thomas and Shaun and the members of Pugwash (Mark 2) in 2000, while on the same bill in Waterford and became instant friends!
Played guitar for a short time live with Pugwash in 2004. Got asked to play on the album “Jollity” then got asked to play guitar live on the “Eleven Modern Antiquities” tour in 2008.
Joined up full time in 2009.
Played on both Duckworth Lewis Method albums and toured with them.
Co-Produced “The Olympus Sound” and the forthcoming “Play This Intimately (As If Among Friends)” with Thomas.
Through all of my life, I’ve only ever played music with friends.
For me, music is tied up with friendship and family.
So to that end, we like to think of Pugwash fans as family.
Until we get too big.
Then we won’t want to know any of you. Wherrrugh.
Peas and bloody love.

 

Shaun “Mac” McGee

Playing bass guitar, since I was about 14 years old. Ambition, after wanting to be a Beatle, was to be in a group with my friends; a group that focussed on original material in a classic pop vein. I’d all but given up the dream of being in such a group because, believe it or not, I couldn’t find anybody who liked the same things that I did in Liverpool (at that time Liverpool musicians for the most part, at least the ones that graced my circle, were into groups like Led Zeppelin, Jimi Hendrix – not that there is anything wrong with those entertainers; they just weren’t the Byrds, Kinks, Who, Beatles, Jam or Small Faces).
Anyways, I soldiered on making my own demo’s to play to my mates every once in a while. Not because I still believed the dream was possible, more because of an inner need to get the songs out of my head.
Anyway, to cut a long story short, back around 1998, a very good friend of mine, Paul Capper, asked if I would stand in on bass, for a group called the Mighty Wah! featuring local legend, Pete Wylie. I was to keep the bass seat warm, after Andy Rourke from the Smiths had decamped, until none other than, former Sex Pistol, Glen Matlock arrived for duty.
Those rehearsals as super sub, we’re a turning point for me and reignited the thought that I would like to be in an original group, with people that I didn’t want to kill.
Fast forward from that to December 1999. My dear friend Duncan Maitland, who had recently left Irish band, Picturehouse, asked me if I’d like to be in on his record over in Dublin.
Needless to say, I jumped at the chance.
As fate would have it, while I was over visiting Duncan, he asked me if I’d be prepared to stand in for an in store performance with Pugwash.
And that is how I first came into contact with Thomas Walsh.
The rest, as they say, is history….
Isn’t life wonderful?
To be continued…..

 

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INFLUENCES

The Electric Light Orchestra – The Small Faces – The Idle Race – The Beatles – The Grays – Colin Hare – Finn Brothers
– High Llamas – Bee Gees – The Kinks – The Move – Roy Wood – Jeff Lynne – Beach Boys – The Zombies – Jellyfish – Michael Penn
– John Cunningham – Honeybus – Crowded House – Judee Sill – Nick Drake – Jason Falkner – The Lemon Pipers – The Left Banke
– Cream – Queen – Jethro Tull – Wizzard – AIR – KD Lang – New Musik – The Buggles – Squeeze – Elvis Costello – LIR – Saville
– Madness – The Byrds  -Graham Fellows – John Shuttleworth – Stealers Wheel – Nelson Bragg – The Wondermints – XTC

 

 

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RECORD LABEL

Omnivore Recordings

 

 

 

Release

Pugwash - Play This

Play This Intimately (As If Among Friends)

Pugwash
Release date: September 4, 2015


Ireland’s most intimate secret is a secret no more!

With 2014’s A Rose In A Garden Of Weeds compilation, Ireland’s Pugwash had their first-ever worldwide release. Pop fans around the world rejoiced as earlier albums were only available as expensive imports. Its success brought about two tours of the U.S., as well as a recently completed U.K. leg, helping Pugwash expand their already rabid and devoted fanbase. The timing could not be more perfect for the follow-up to their 2011 Choice Music Prize nominated The Olympus Sound.
 

Play This Intimately (As If Among Friends) is the highly anticipated, new studio release from Pugwash, their first in 4 years. Recorded at Konk Studios (founded by The Kinks), and engineered and mixed by Guy Massey (The Beatles reissues mastering engineer), Play This Intimately contains 12 new tracks that demonstrate the songwriting genius, range in styles and brilliant musicianship their fans have come to know and love from Thomas Walsh (vocals, guitar), Tosh Flood (guitar), Shaun McGee (bass) and Joe Fitzgerald (drums). While their previous albums have featured guest appearance from friends like Ben Folds, Dave Gregory (XTC), Jason Falkner (Jellyfish), and more—this release boasts an impressive pedigree of contributors including Ray Davies (The Kinks), Andy Partridge (XTC), Neil Hannon (The Divine Comedy and Walsh’s partner in The Duckworth Lewis Method), and even a “shout” from Jeff Lynne of ELO.
 

Packaged in a digipak with lyrics and photos, Play This Intimately will also be available on vinyl (translucent red for the first, limited-edition pressing) with a download card.
 

Pugwash will return to the U.S. in late August to begin a tour that will find them charting new territory, visiting cities and fans they’ve not been able to meet yet. Those already hip to and devoted to Pugwash will adore Play This Intimately (As If Among Friends). Newcomers just catching the buzz, will join the resounding chorus and want to share Pugwash’s music and live experience with friends. And while Pugwash might be ‘playing intimately’ to friends new and old, this new album is aimed squarely at playing loudly and to everyone all over the world!
 
    CD/Digital Track List:
1. KICKING AND SCREAMING
2. LUCKY IN EVERY WAY
3. FEED HIS HEART WITH COAL
4. JUST SO YOU KNOW
5. CLOUDS
6. THE FOOL I HAD BECOME
7. YOU COULD ALWAYS CRY
8. HUNG MYSELF OUT TO DRY
9. SILLY LOVE
10. OH HAPPY DAYS
11. ALL THE WAY FROM LOVE
12. WE ARE EVERYWHERE

 



 

DISCOGRAPHY

 

Play This Intimately (As If Among Friends)  (2015)

Play This Intimately (As If Among Friends) (2015)

A Rose In a Garden Of Weeds (2014)

A Rose In a Garden Of Weeds (2014)

Here We Go 'Round Again EP (2011)

The Olympus Sound (2011)

Giddy (2009)

 

Eleven Modern Antiquities (2008)

Jollity (2005)

Earworm (2003)

Almanac (2002)

Almond Tea (1999)

 



 

REVIEWS

 

Album Review: Pugwash, “Play This Intimately (As If Among Friends)”

September 24, 2015 / Dw. Dunphy / popdose.com/

 

For about a decade I’ve been evangelizing about the band Pugwash, hailing from Dublin, Ireland. It usually is prompted whenever someone bemoans that “they just don’t make them like they used to” or “there’s no good new music/bands out there.” The sticking point has been up to now that their albums have only been available as expensive imports. Then something rather miraculous happened last year. Omnivore Records, purveyors of classic pop legacies like Big Star, The Knack, The Three O’Clock, Jellyfish and others put out a Pugwash primer A Rose In A Garden Of Weeds. It was a sign of things to come.

And now it is here. Blending that pure pop sound, the slight psychedelia, the melodies that don’t sit on your brain as much as they wedge in like a tenement squatter refusing to leave, and the tasteful qualities that have identified their previous efforts, Pugwash formalizes their American invasion with Play This Intimately (As If Among Friends).

Bandleader Thomas Walsh explained the album’s title is a homage to records from the early-1960s, where record labels suggested how the product would be best consumed. On another level, Play This Intimately (As If Among Friends) describes the contents as the tracks regularly assume a mid-tempo pace. This is heard on the standout “The Fool I Had Become,” a swirling brokenhearted ballad. You can also hear it on “You Could Always Cry,” a track that alternately recalls The Traveling Wilburys and The Kinks with great admiration toward both.

This is not to say the record is devoid of rockers. The opening “Kicking and Screaming” finds drummer Joey Fitzgerald employing a bit of rubber soul. Lead guitarist Tosh Flood and bassist Shaun McGee lock in on a Beatlesque “Getting Better” vibe on “Hung Myself Out To Dry.” Yet the majority of the record is, as I say, intimate. It is an early-autumn kind of album that you pop on and go for a long leisurely tour with. A perfect chill-out disc with a ’60s sentiment behind it.

And there’s the strange part. While Pugwash is not a relatively old group (the debut Almond Tea appeared in 1999), if you packaged them on a bill with some of their heroes, they would fit in more like peers and certainly not like imitators. Many of those heroes appear on this very album: ELO’s Jeff Lynne, Walsh’s self-avowed idol; XTC’s Andy Partridge; and Kink and Konk Studios owner (where the album was recorded) Ray Davies. Walsh’s Duckworth Lewis Method cohort Neil Hannon also co-conspires to great effect.

If I have any word of warning (and perhaps warning is too severe…Let’s say caution instead), longtime fans may be put off that the group’s heavier side doesn’t get airtime on this disc. No, there isn’t a track as punchy as Jollity’s “This Could Be Good” or Eleven Modern Antiquities’ “Take Me Away,” but I don’t think either of those songs would have worked on Play This Intimately (As If Among Friends). This is its own entity and makes a credible case for itself if you allow it to. You’ll get it big time if you allow it a chance.

Pugwash is a band that jumped in the time machine in 1969 and, fortunately for us, arrived right on time now.

 

 

Music Review: Pugwash – ‘A Rose In A Garden Of Weeds: A Preamble Through The History Of Pugwash…’

September 15, 2014 / Wesley Britton / blogcritics.org

A Rose In a Garden Of Weeds (2014)

If you’re a North American like me, odds are you’ve never heard of an Irish band called Pugwash. But if you hail from the U.K. or Australia, it’s possible one or more of your favorite albums might be Almond Tea (1999), Almanac (2002), Jollity (2005), Eleven Modern Antiquities (2008), or The Olympus Sound (2011). Or perhaps you have one of the band’s compilations, including Earworm (2003) or Giddy (2009).

PugwashNow, thanks to Omnivore Recordings, on Sept. 23 Pugwash is finally crossing the pond with the release of A Rose In A Garden Of Weeds: A Preamble Through The History Of Pugwash…, a retrospective 17-song sampling of what the group has been doing since 1999. Ladies and gentlemen, the collection is really good stuff.

From the beginning, Pugwash has been led by multi-instrumentalist Thomas Walsh, who’s well-known for being an almost exact vocal doppelganger of Jeff Lynne. Not only does Walsh provide lead and backing vocals, six-string electric & acoustic guitars, but also Chamberlin strings & brass, Casio keyboard, Novatron, Hammond organ, and percussion.

While comparisons to many bands are easy to make, clearly Walsh’s elaborate productions most closely resemble those of ELO. While Walsh has said critics are “lazy” when they point out the influence of The Beatles on his work, well, we’re only calling attention to the obvious. If ELO picked up where “I Am The Walrus” left off, then Pugwash is the next chapter in that trajectory.

And while it might be lazy to note the many links between Pugwash and groups that came before, new listeners might like to know Pugwash amalgamates many familiar sounds in their often experimental mix. For example, the opening track, “Take Me Away” culled from Eleven Modern Antiquities, has the now ubiquitous jangle guitar created by The Byrds. “Anyone Who Asks” features the hard-hitting drums of Aidan O’Grady, who evokes the spirit of John Bonham. While publicity for the album claims the style of The Beach Boys is a major component of the Pugwash sound, that’s only evident on a few tracks. In particular, “It’s Nice To Be Nice” from Jollity appropriately has quotes from Brian Wilson’s “Wouldn’t It Be Nice.”

To continue my laziness, the presence of the psychedelic-era Beatles just can’t be missed. While “Keep Movin’ On” rides on a Hammond organ melody, the lead guitar copies the sliding notes of George Harrison. From Almond Tea, “Finer Things In Life” is pure post-Fabs John Lennon. While “Anchor” is far from a recreation of “Penny Lane,” the trumpet lines are more than reminiscent of that McCartney number. Speaking of Sir Paul, the title song picks up where “Eleanor Rigby” left off. In fact, the track was recorded with The Section Quartet at Abbey Road 38 years to the day after “Tomorrow Never Knows” was recorded in the same room.

All this being said, it’s wildly unfair to think of Pugwash as merely a pastiche of The Beatles, ELO, or anyone else. For one matter, Walsh’s often clever musical settings aren’t as arena rock dramatic as the late ’70s incarnation of ELO. Walsh, as in the playful electronic sounds of “Monorail,” puts his own original, distinctive stamp on every track. You can see the roots of his musical family tree clearly enough, but these 17 roses sound fresh, inventive, and delightful. There are no weeds in this garden.

To introduce Pugwash to the American market, Omnivore has put together a very nice package, a digipak with previously unseen photographs, a band history, and notes from Fountains Of Wayne’s Chris Collingwood and The Section Quartet’s Eric Gorfain, who recalls the recording of the album’s title song at Abbey Road. For each track, the original album from which the song was taken is identified, which is helpful as the songs were not assembled in chronological order.

In addition, all the lyrics are published as well as listings of all the players, which is also helpful as Pugwash, other than Walsh, was a rotating cast of performers. Of these, it’s worth acknowledging producer and co-writer Keith Farrell, who was a major participant in the Pugwash canon, playing bass, Moog, Hammond organ, and providing backing vocals on more tracks than anyone else outside of Walsh. Credit must also be given to XTC veterans Andy Partridge and Dave Gregory for their songwriting and production contributions.

It’s good that, in the wake of A Rose In A Garden Of Weeds: A Preamble Through The History Of Pugwash…, the line-up that played on The Olympus Sound will be touring the U.S. this fall. The band currently includes Walsh, Tosh Flood (guitar/keys), Shaun McGee (bass), and Joey Fitzgerald (drums). The Irish are coming—prepare yourself by groovin’ with A Rose In A Garden Of Weeds. For we Yanks, it is one of the happiest surprises of 2014.

 

 

PugwashOfficial.com