Amadan, McGnarley’s Rant – Kells Irish Pub, Portland, OR (March 16, 2002)

On Saturday, I stumbled downtown into the chaotic Kells Pub.On my way to one of the three (four?) tents that the pub had set up for music, I heard bagpipes playin’ everywhere (a good thing!), saw way too many of those goofy Jamison’s green and white “cat in the hat” style hats, and people in Notre Damn Fightin’ Irish sweaters asking me where the green beer was. I usually avoid this part of town anytime near Paddy’s Day, but, today there were a few bands that I wanted to see, and they were playing one right after the other.

Amadan took the stage at 6 o’clock and began their set with mostly songs from the excellent new album “Sons Of Liberty” such as ‘The Republic, Back Home In Derry, Morrisons-Cadence To A Drunken Arms Deal” They also did a few covers from The Pogues, such as “Rain Street”, Dropkick Murphys, “Good Rats” and even did “Will Ye Be Proud” that was cut straight from the cloth of a Real McKenzies kilt! The (older) sober crowd seemed like they each had an eyebrow raised, and were studying this band on stage. It was too early and most of the “Crusties” weren’t out yet! A damn good show anyway!

Then McGnarley’s Rant came aboard, and they had a hard time with the still sober crowd. By the end of their set, folks were more becoming loud, and loose, and finally began to dance. This band has been on the road since Jan. 4th, and still had the energy to produce a kick ass set. The lead singer, “Shameless” Tipsy McGnarley looked possessed most of the time, and the fiddler, Sally “MacIennane” McGnarley galloped back and forth across the stage. The rest of the band was just as solid. If these lads, & (lass), ever come to your town, go to the show! A big thanks to the band for that Swingin’ Utters song! (I was that guy screaming and clapping!)

Review by Brian Gillespie

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