Bodh’aktan: Ride out the Storm

Could the new princes of hard Celtic rock be a bunch of French speaking Canadians? Seriously! I’m very, very impressed by Ride out the Storm, the 2018 English language album from these Québécois.

Ride out the Storm album opens with some short Celtic orchestration that would do Horslips proud then charging into a full fledged jig and roll drinking ode that is Nothing But A Game. Get Loud came as a complete throwback surprise back to me, classic 1980s radio friendly metal with a fiddle – this could have easily been a standout track on Mama’s Boys 1985 Power and Passion album (my first introduction of Celtic meets hard rock). The maritime Heave Away gives fellow Canucks, Great Big Sea, a run (sail?) for their money. While the legendary Paddy Moloney of The Chieftains guests on the traditional Black Velvet Band and having Paddy on your album is about the biggest endorsement you can get from one of the true greats. Ride out the storm is a magnificent Celtic-rocker and The Bridge another hard rock throwback while Reels is just that and shows Bodh’aktan can reel with the very best of ‘em.

In all, a really great album with top notch songs and musicians a tight as that ducks ass.  Very highly recommended.


Pat Chessell is a Celtic troubadour from the wild west of Canada. I Confess, is the third album from Pat that has crossed the Shite’n’Onions threshold. I’m hearing on I Confess tremendous growth from his earlier releases where his original material was propped up with multiple covers and standards. Now its stand alone Pat for the most part with just two trad covers and the rest strong originals. Musically Pat is a part of the young Celtic tradition and similar in style to fellow Vancouverites, The Town Pants, with maybe just a touch Canadiana.

The Mahones: Unplugged 2020

The Mahones are currently in the studio in Toronto mixing tracks for their upcoming “unplugged” album set for release in early 2020.


01. Girl With Galway Eyes
02. Rise Again
03. A Little Bit Of Love (feat. Damhnait Doyle)
04. London
05. Draggin’ The Days
06. Cocktail Blue
07. Far Away
08. Will Ya Marry Me
09. Night Train To Paris
10. 100 Bucks
11. Back Home
12. Celtic Pride
Bonus Acoustic Tracks:
13. Hurt
14. Stars (feat. Simon Townshend)
15. Someone Saved Me
16. Never Let You Down (feat. Sarah Harmer)

In the meantime you can sample The Mahones at their unplugged best.

Mickey Rickshaw: Home in Song

I caught Mickey Rickshaw live for the first time earlier this year opening for The Tossers at the Middle East Club in Cambridge. The show was also the album release party for Home in Song, the Boston based Celtic punk outfits third full length album. Mickey Rickshaw are a massive band with 8 members, making a massive sound as they completely took over the small stage of the Middle East with a wall bodies creating a wall of Celtic-punk sound. The live sound translates very well to the recorded sound here on Home in Song. If pushed I’d say that Mickey Rickshaw reminded me most of Blood or Whiskey with their mix of Celtic, punk and some ska. A band to watch out for.

The Walker Roaders: THE WALKER ROADERS

Celtic-punks first supergroup here! LA based The Walker Roaders consist of a Pogue, James Fearnley (vocals and accordion) and former members of the Dropkick Murphys (Marc Orrell) and Flogging Molly (Ted Hutt, a founding member of the Mollies and later producer). Musically, The Walker Roaders are closer to the Pogues then DKM or FM though even closer to James two post-post Pogues bands, the 1990’s Low & Sweet Orchestra and the more recent Cranky George but with stronger Celtic melodies then either which meshes so well with his north of England grittyness.

Alternative Ulster: Merry Feckin’ Christmas

Actually a 2018 release but I missed the opportunity to review in that seasonal window but Christmas comes but once a year so here it is. 

Merry Feckin’ Christmas is the musical equivalent of that once a year uncle who shows up with bagpipes, drunk for Christmas dinner, gropes the hostess, scares the kids and old people, knocks over the Christmas tree and pukes on the presents. 

12 tracks in all with both the standards we all expect (Fairtytale of New York, Auld Lang Syne, 12 Days of Christmas)  and some originals coming to Christmas carolers near you (All I Want For Christmas is A Divorce and The Gale Killed Christmas)

Marry Feckin’ Christmas and Pog Mo Thoin


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