THE Dangerous Folk: #1

Now from Brisbane, Australia, we have some serious DIY stuff from the Dangerous Folk – a CDR and typed up track listing. The 5 songs on offer on #1 are also seriously good old school punk with strong folk undercurrents. Check out their ode to their hometown (and the Dropkick Murphys), Shipping up to Brisbane

https://www.facebook.com/The-dangerous-folk-352351448455236/

https://thedangerousfolk.bandcamp.com/

Medusa’s Wake: Rascals & Rogues

Rascals & Rogues is the debut album from Aussie band Medusa’s Wake. What we have here is very solid DIY folk punk with influences from both the Irish and Australian tradition as well as seafaring shanties. Fellow Sydney band The Rumjacks are an obvious comparison but these guys are not Johnny-come-latelies as I hear The Pogues, The Dubliners and especially the much missed 80s Celt-punks and Sydneysider, Roaring Jack in their sound. Looking forward to hearing more Medusa’s Wake. 

https://www.facebook.com/medusaswake/

https://www.medusaswake.net/

Flogging Molly: Swagger 20th Anniversary Edition

Is it really 20 years!! Seriously? To me Swagger is the album that started the Celtic punk scene. Sure the Pogues were the first Celtic-punk band but there was not a real scene before Flogging Molly exploded with Swagger. Even the Dropkick Murphys were still a street punk band in scally caps back then.  The 20th Anniversary Edition box set is a really nice package – Swagger as a double LP on red and white colored vinyl including the bonus Juan El Sentimental. A six track live EP on blue splatter vinyl from 2001 with mostly previously unreleased traditional stuff. A DVD of Swagger live from 2000 and various goodies – lyric book, buttons, record player pad. In all a very, very nice package.

https://www.floggingmolly.com/

https://www.facebook.com/floggingmolly/

30 Years Of The Mahones

SnO – So, 30 Years of The Mahones! How are you celebrating?

Finny- We are doing amazing and better than ever. So crazy right? We are all glad to be alive and rocking all over the world. We managed to have two albums released, 30 Years and This Is All We Got To Show For It (Dec) and Unplugged (April) in 2020 on Canada’s best (and one of the world’s best) record labels, the legendary True North Records which has been around since the 1960’s. All the Canadian legends are on that label, so we love it there. It’s been a great year record wise in 2020 for The Mighty Mahones!!!!

SnO –Tell me more about the new album?

Finny – It’s a 30 year retrospective of all our best work, I really had a great trip down memory lane when we were remastering all those classic Mahones songs for this album in Toronto at the legendary Telejet Music Studio. One of my favorite studios in the world. Love that place. Anyways, it’s now my favorite Mahones album and the only one I listen to hahahaha, but I say this every time we release a new album. I just love it. A very happy album and It’s also our very first album on coloured GREEN VINYL!!!!

SnO – There are 10 songs on the new vinyl album. Do these songs represent the true sound of The Mahones?

Finny – Awww jayzuz I hope so, as we wrote them all. I think it really represents of the sound of The Mahones in 2020. Our are always trying making better music on every new album we do. It’s all killer and no filler brother. Turn it up loud to eleven!!!

SnO – Out of all the 100’s of songs in The Mahones back catalogue, what was the deciding factor on what songs to choose?

Finny – Well I find it very easy to make this kind of album, so I really go first with the fan favourites every time as this is what they really want. That’s what the music business is all about really, looking after your fan base and trying to spoil them with some really amazing albums for their music collections. I also go with my favourites and check to see what the fans are listening to on the internet on sites like Spotify and Apple Music. You can see there what you fans are streaming etc., so that’s also a very handy new too for us bands and songwriters these days. I do love the internet for what we can do with our music these days. So much easier than back in the 90’s. We now have access to the entire world.

SnO – This new album is on vinyl and cd. How are you liking the new vinyl resurgence?

Finny – I LOVE IT. Let me just flip over my new David Bowie Pin Ups picture disc now. OK, I am back. I think it’s really great and I think we should put out our award winning Black Irish Album on vinyl now too as it’s the 10th Anniversary of that Mahones classic. We just sold out of the new Mahones 30 Years album in 2 days, so YES I love the new vinyl resurgence. It’s AMAZING!!!!

SnO – Beyond the new retrospective album, how have you been keeping busy during Covid?

Finny – We I have been very busy cancelling and postponing gigs and tours with our amazing agents at MAD Tourbooking since March this year, so that has been very terrible, tough and messy. The Mahones are supposed to return to touring Europe in Feb 2021, but I believe that tour will probably also be moved to fall 2021 now, but one again I am not sure so stay tuned.  It’s our fecking 30th Anniversary Tour too, so it would be nice to do it one day. Anyways, The Mahones will return in 2021 as soon as we are allowed to play live again and we have booked a recording studio for two weeks next summer 2021 in Berlin, Germany to record  our next studio album. That’s exciting news.

SnO – It must be difficult for The Mahones being a full time gigging band?

Finny – Yes, this whole year has be a huge disaster for everyone in the music business from musicians to technicians, road crew, clubs, venues, pubs, promoters, agents, managers, merch companies, festivals etc you name it. We all have to just stay strong, help each other and get through this together and wear a mask until this virus is shut down in 2021. Such a hard time for everyone mentally, financially and stress wise also. I really think when live music comes back, everyone will appreciate it more this time than ever and show more support as the entire world just got a taste of what it’s like to have no live music. It’s horrible. Here’s to a better future and 2021 for live music all over the world!!!!

SnO – I see you have been doing solo gigs. How have they been going. Different material?

Finny – Yes, I have also been doing a solo acoustic thing for the fist time since 2005. That was my last mini break from The Mahones touring cycle. The solo show is 50% non Mahones stuff and the rest is acoustic versions of Mahones songs and deep cuts with stories added.  I did a short 10 date tour in Europe which was sold out and got amazing reviews, and then the Canadian tour was postponed by the second wave of Covid19, so I am locked down in Toronto again right now. The good new is, I am always working on something, so I have been in the studio working on a new “Finny McConnell – Live in Hamburg” solo acoustic tour live album. Hopefully I can make it sound great and release it to the public in 2021. 

SnO – Plans for 2021. We will see you back in the USA?

Finny – Well, like I said we are still moving tours and dates around so looks like yes we will try to make it back into the beautiful USA in 2021. We sure miss you all down there. Fingers crossed, wear your mask, wash your hands, stay safe and see you all in 2021. We can’t wait to get back on the road for our 30th Anniversary World Tour. Slainte everyone!!!

The Go Set: Of Bright Futures…and Broken Pasts

The Aussie version of Of Bright Futures…..and Broken Pasts, was released as two separate EPs. I was lucky enough to get my grubby paws on the German vinyl version where each EP becomes a side of the LP. The “Of Bright Futures”, side is The Go Set rocking out at their very best Weddings Parties Anything inspired blue-collar bagpipe infused punk’n’roll. The flip side “…and Broken Pasts”, is more introspective acoustic flavored folk punk. I’ve been a big fan of pretty much everything The Go Set has release over the last 15 year yet Of Bright Futures…and Broken Past might be to these ears the best thing these guys have ever done (at least since their mighty Sing A Song Of Revolution debut).

http://thegoset.com/

Ferocious Dog: Live At Rock City

Live at Rock City was recorded in 2015 (released in 2016 and I just picked it up in 2020). Rock City is a legendary 2,000 capacity rock club in the band’s hometown of Nottingham, England. Ferocious Dog has the distinction of being the first independent band to ever sell out the venue (in 22 minutes). If you haven’t heard Ferocious Dog, they play folk-punk that takes its start from The Levellers, New Model Army and The Pogues yet have their own distinct speedy English folk punk sound. If Live At Rock City is an indication of the band live, then I really, really want to see them play.

https://ferociousdog.co.uk/

Alternative Ulster: Craic Agus Ceol

My favorite lawn killers are back with another slab of bagpipe wailing, hardcore punk rock. Alternative Ulster straddle old school punk and more hardcore sounds. Opener, “It Took A Lot of Love (To Hate You The Way I Do), even has some great melodies – shock, horror. Vocals are nicely split between Wendy Henry on the more (melodic) old school punk sounds and the growling Todd Henry on the hardcore stuff. Alternative Ulster are not for the faint hearted but always a fun listen.

https://www.facebook.com/bagpiperockandroll/

https://alternativeulster1.bandcamp.com/

The Pogues: BBC Sessions 1984 – 85

Another RSD release this year on vinyl is The Pogues, BBC Sessions 1984 – 85, a collection of sessions that The Pogues recorded for various BBC radio shows during their early years. Most, if not all of these tracks were released on 2007’s excellent box set, Just Look The Straight In The Eye and Say Pogue Mahone, and have been floating around on various bootlegs prior to that. Nevertheless, it’s nice to have these songs on vinyl and nice to be able to buy something kind of new from The Pogues.

Tracklisting:
Broadcast April 17, 1984 (as Pogue Mahone) – The John Peel Show
1) Streams Of Whiskey
2) Greenland Whale Fisheries
3) Boys From The County Hell
4) The Auld Triangle

Broadcast 9th July 1984 – David ‘Kid’ Jensen
5) Dingle Regatta
6) Poor Paddy On The Railway
7) Boys From The County Hell
8) Connemara, Let’s Go

Broadcast 16th December 1984 – John Peel Show
9) Whiskey You’re The Devil
10) Navigator
11) Sally MacLennane
16) Danny Boy

Broadcast 11th July 1985 – Janice Long Show
16) Wild Cats Of Kilkenny
17) Billy’s Bones
18) The Old Main Drag
19) Dirty Old Town

http://www.pogues.com/

Blaze Foley: Live at the Austin Outhouse

I’ve been listening to a lot of old Outlaw Country recently, especially Steve Earle, Towns Van Zandt and through them I discovered this gentleman, Blaze Foley, probably the most authentic outlaw of them all. Live at the Austin Outhouse is a limited edition RSD release of a recording of one of Foley’s last live shows – recorded in 1989, 3 months before he was shot dead. The recording was originally supposed to have been a fundraiser for the homeless in Austin but the then cassette only release ended up being used to raise funds to have Foley’s body freed from the undertakes and to give him a decent burial. Bad luck, bad behavior and an unwillingness to ever compromise ment Foley was pretty much unknown outside the Austin bar scene (where he was pretty much banned from most of the venues in the city – the Austin Outhouse had just let him start playing again). His legend has grown in his death primarily due to the absolute strength of his songwriting – John Prine and Tim Barry have both covered his masterpiece Clay Pigeons, while Towns Van Zant and Lucinda Williams both recorded tributes to Blaze. This is the absolute real deal and not that bad Bon Jovi ballad like shite that Nashville brands as country music these days. For more on Blaze checkout Ethan Hawks biopic of Foley or the documentary Duct Tape Messiah.

Raglan Road: Raglan Road

Despite being named after a Dublin street made famous by Patrick Kavanagh’s poem, Raglan Road, are from the eastern seaboard of Canada. Their self titled debut album is a very fine slice of Celtic-rock with the obvious maritime influences. There are some great vocal harmonies to be found here. Reminiscent of the Great Big Sea and The Town Pants (Lamenter’s Lament is covered). A nice start though hoping for more originals on the next album.

https://www.facebook.com/raglanroadmusic/

https://raglanroad1.bandcamp.com/album/raglan-road

Potato-eating, Whiskey-drinking, Bog-trotting, CELTIC PUNK ROCK

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