The McGillicuddys: Kilt To Death

Ya know, every time I turn my head away, another Celtic punk band from Canada, delivers a sucker punch! Right when we here at Shite’n’Onions think we have covered them all under our collective radar, another band sneaks up from behind with a giant left hook! That’s what The McGillicuddys did. They snuck up on me with their debut album, “Kilt To Death” and knocked me over with it. Upon first glance at the album, I notice they cover a Roaring Jack tune, “Buy Us A Drink”. I also notice they cover songs such as “Nancy Whisky”, and “The Leaving Of Liverpool”. With the vocals sounding a tad bit like Mike Ness, The McGillicuddys deliver a nice smooth overall sound. The band hailing from “very-British” Victoria, B.C., sure make it a point to show their Celtic roots proudly! (I’m jokingly knocking their hometurf, that features the snotty 3.30 tea-time, and those Union-Jack(off) double decker buses with all those tourists driving around the harbor. It’s my way of getting them back for that musical sucker-punch!)

Uh, sorry, back to the review! The lyrics in this album are something to point out. With the song, “The Ballad Of Will Munny” we get some very impressive lyrics covering the trials and tribulations of Will Munny. (the guy from the film, “The Unforgiven”) Or the song, “The Shakes” with it’s booze related theme. The McGillicuddys have a nice thing going on in the lyric department. Musically, they are on top of the game as well. On the original, “The Lady Owen” they break into the traditional dandy, “Rattlin’ Bog”. As far as traditional tracks on this album goes, my favorite has to be “Father Jack’s Favorite” (maybe they should change it to “Father Jack & Brian G’s Favorite”? Uh, never mind. The thought of me sharing anything other than a confession with a Priest is pretty fuckin’ scary!!)

If I had to complain about anything, it’d be the overall production. I can tell they sound better than the album allows them too sound. It’s not that the production is bad, it’s just that it could be better. I guess that means I’ll have to cruise up to Victoria, to see a live show, and harass all the “tea-timers” sippin’ away. Or maybe I’ll just piss on the side of those “Union Jack(off)” double-decker buses after a McGillicuddy’s gig!

May 2003

Review by Brian Gillespie

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