Tag Archives: The Gobshites

Shamrocked, Part 2 – Inside the Shamrock-N-Roll Festival (September 2011)

September 15, 2011

John Curtin is the drummer Tin Whistle and  Bodhran play for The Gobshites (and a stand-up comic but not with The Gobshites – that’s Pete Walsh’s gig).  John posted recently on his blog, “This Is Not A Rant”, an non-rant about the Shamrock-N-Roll Festival stop in Bangor where The Gobshites played – I thought it would be cool to post as a review of the show and an insider view of what was going on. So, in John’s own words……

This weekend was pretty exciting.  The Gobshites played Shamrock-N-Roll Festival in Bangor, Maine with headliners Dropkick Murphy’s, as well as Stiff Little Fingers, Street Dogs, the Mahones, Chuck Ragan, and the Parkington Sisters.  We were part of the local band “Undercard” that included Pubcrawlers, Bar Stuards, Beantown Boozehounds, and the O’Tooles.  Our set wasn’t until 3PM, but we had to be there at 10 in the morning, which meant leaving the house at 5.  Ah, the life of a rock star.  Due to a couple of last minute cancellations, I ended up playing drums (And a HUGE thanks to the O’Tooles for letting us use their kit.  Lifesavers, so y’are!), and we borrowed Travis from the Pubcrawlers (Another big thank you) to play tin whistle.

It was a long day, but boy was it fun.  The local bands hung out in the field behind the “B” stage, and it was like a cookout without the grill.  Everyone brought their amber-colored liquid of choice (mine, of course, was iced tea), and Jess went into teacher mode and organized the snacks along with the Pubcrawlers’ ladies (Who brought sandwich making materials.  We brought plenty of crunchy stuff, plus popcakes and Nutella.  We definitely made some converts that day.).  Everyone came out to watch each other’s sets, and there was actually a pretty decent sized crown there from the start.  We’ve played festivals where no one really shows up until the main acts start, so it was nice to see folks supporting the local acts too.  It definitely added to everyone’s energy on stage, which resulted in some really fun sets from everyone.

As for our performance, well, it could have been better in my opinion.  But nonetheless, we were well received.  Actually, the crowd seemed to appreciate everyone, which was nice.  For some reason, I kept dropping sticks.  I don’t know if it was exhaustion from the long drive or what, but my right hand just could not seem to get a proper grip on the drumstick.  Weird.  Plus I could barely hear the rest of the band, so I don’t even know if I was playing in time.  Oh well, it’s punk rock, it’s not supposed to be pretty.  At least I had the Nutella handy to wash all of my frustrations away…

The main stage started up around 6 or so, with the first act being the Parkington Sisters.  Not an act you’d typically expect to see at a show like this.  But what they lacked in sonic boom-ness, they made up for in profanity.  There’s just something about a hot chick that can wail on a fiddle and swear like a stevedore.  I’ve been listening to a lot of rootsy music lately, so they were a welcome interlude.  Not everyone liked them, but Jess and I did, so they made at least two fans that day.  Mahones were up next.  We opened for them in Boston last Summer, but I unfortunately had to miss that show, so this was actually the first time I’d ever seen them live.  Wow, they put on a great show.  Their whistle player is simply amazing, and their accordion player was lively and leggy.  Mama’s got a squeezebox, indeed.

Chuck Ragan had a good set, although I had gone to get dinner during much of it.  His low growl and emotion really drove his folk punk songs.  I need to pick up some of his music.  We’ve played withStreet Dogs before, and they’re about as good a punk rock band as there is nowadays.  Mike and Johnny really know how to fire up a crowd, everybody was moving and having a good time during their set.  If they come to your town, make sure you don’t miss it.  For reals, these guys scorched the stage.

The band I was most excited to see was Stiff Little Fingers.  Punk rock legends.  Northern Ireland’s answer to The Clash.  As with the Mahones, I had to miss the show we opened for them a few months ago, so this was a second chance to bask in the glow of one of my all time favorite bands.  They pulled out almost all the hits.  I found myself singing along like a twelve year old girl at a Justine Bieber concert (No, I’m not linking to his website.).

We didn’t stay for the entire Dropkick Murphy’s set, because by then we’d been walking around and rocking out for nearly 12 hours.  So I missed the acoustic part of the show, and the part where Ken Casey stepped on my friend Gina’s head (She’s fine, she actually got kind of psyched about it.).  I’ve seen them many many times, and they’re a great live act, but we were totally spent and decided to call it a night.  Luckily, Jess has family not too far away, so we sacked out there with two of the biggest dogs I’ve ever seen and a kitten with double paws, who seemed and acted like a long lost relative of Finn.

Sunday’s drive home was long, but fun (I retained my Punchbuggy crown), and we ended the weekend at Secret Society Tattoo and Art Gallery in Worcester.  They were having an art opening for a local artist, and Jess was pouring the whisky (she spells it without the “E”, so I will too).  The food was good, and I met some cool folks from the Worcester arts scene.  Jeff Gemma and Danny Gunns, the guys who do the ink slinging there, were in attendance (Jeff is actually the owner), and it was a cool, laid back way to finish the weekend.

Tonight, the Gobshites try out a new drummer, and we’re playing out on the deck again this Friday at Mick Morgan’s in Sharon.  Last time there was an absolute blast, so I’m definitely looking forward to this show.  Stop by and say hi if you can.

Souveniers are available in the gift shop…

John Curtin


Stiff Little Fingers, The Gobshites – JUne 1, 2011, Showtime Live, Foxboro, MA

June 2, 2011

Lesser bands then SLF would have canceled last nights show – guitarist Ian McCallum took sick moments before the tour started – John Haggarty of Naked Raygun infamy stood in, and while a competent substitute, he looked a little uncomfortable on stage. Then there was the odd choice of venue for a punk gig – Showcase Live, a state of the art concert venue beside Foxoboro football stadium some 30 miles outside Boston, but a venue more used to hosting tribute acts – Showcase is also not exactly easy to get to even when there isn’t frigging tornado’s ripping up various parts of the state and a state wide tornado emergency in effect – thus ensured a small turn out (though if SLF had played the Middle East club instead it would have sold out, tornado or not). Despite the poor attendance, an appreciative (and somewhat portly) Jake Burns along with original (and skinny) bass player McMordie, the a fore mentioned Haggerty and drummer Steve Grantley played a blistering set of SLF classics to an enthusiastic and hardy crowd of storm chasers, though with the exception of Strummerville everything was from the glory days of the late 70’s and early 80s and guess what, nobody seemed to mind.

Support was from The Gobshites who gave me a nice shout out from the stage and a song dedication or so I though was a nice shout out until they broke into Arsehole by Snuff –

What an arsehole
What a fucking wanker
What a toss-pot ,a toe rag ,a fart in a jar

– where there is smoke there must be fire I guess.

The Mahones, The Gobshites, Continental, Chris Skel – JULY 24, 2010 @ McGann’s Pub, Boston, MA

July 27, 2010

Just around the corner from Boston’s North Station and the home of The Celtics and The Bruins, is McGann’s Pub. Although only average-sized in square footage, the place is laid out perfectly for a show like tonight’s.

The first act to go on was a single guy with an acoustic guitar. There was no fear of any James Taylor-like smooth and/or mellow stylings though, as the guy was Chris Skel, helmsman of New Jersey pub punk act, The Skels. With just his axe and his voice, he created a huge noise off of that stage! His set included a track or two from the Skels catalog, true, but the bulk of it came from his solo material. For those unaware, Chris has put out two solo project CD over the last eighteen months, so he had plenty of great material to choose from. (Look for a review of his newest 6-track EP, “Sudden Psalms” here soon!) Chris set the pace well and got the crowd on their feet.

Up next, (or ‘again,’ since they did the sound check earlier with some killer stuff!), was Rick Barton and The Continental. Rick Barton, a familiar face in this type of venue as the former guitarist for the Dropkick Murphys, assembled this new project with himself in the guitar and lead vocals role, (and his son on the bass.) An incredible performance from these guys, tight and sharp, with some fantastic guitar solos from his lead guitarist. (Oh, and an excellent rendition of DKM’s The Torch, by the way!)

The third band in the line-up was The Gobshites, who somehow manage to show up and play at every show I see in Boston!
Pete and the gang jumped right into action and proved, once again, to possess the largest catalog of drinking songs in the free world!
Apparently on a first-name basis with every member of the audience, the band’s conversational banter and audience participation portion, (which included alternating readers for the limericks, and some masterful beer-tray playing,) brings Gobshites’ sets as close to an open seisiún as punk rock gets.

The headliners, of course, were The Mahones. The band were in the midst of celebrating their twentieth anniversary tour, and a festive mood was running amok!
Unfortunately, the band was playing as a four-piece, without their mandolinist. As a mandolin player myself this was a bit of a let down, but the band seemed to compensate by selecting songs from the higher-energy end of their catalog! This was probably for the best, and the mood of the crowd was perfect for these tunes.
Tight, clean and in top-notch form, The Mahones blasted out a great set deep into the evening.

By the time the music had died down, the Newcastles and Patron were making their presence known to me. Fearless and bulletproof, I was feeling pretty good. The show, though, was a great time for all, and another huge success for Shite ‘n’ Onions.

Thanks a bunch to S’n’O’s John Murphy, for another fantastic show!

Review by Christopher P. Toler, THE Blathering Gommel

The Gobshites: The Whistle Before the Snap

The Whistle Before the Snap is the long awaited and much delayed album by Boston’s greatest Folk’n’Irish band The Gobshites. Now, while some bands claim to be influenced by the Ramones, some bands wear Ramones shirts, some bands even sing about the Ramones, well The Gobshites manage to have a Ramone (Ritchie) sit in on drums for the whole album. The Gobshites are famous for taking old punk rock standards and giving ’em the Irish treatment so of course we have Somebody Put Something in My Drink given The Gobshites once over as well as Mojo Nixon‘s ode to Shane’s Dentist. But unlike before everything else is original (though if you want split hairs four of the songs were originally recorded by head Gobshite Pete Walsh’s punk band Meat Depressed – written with the Gobshites in mind I’m assured). How does it sound? Great! slightly chaotic, tipsy to sloshed, pub-punk sing along’s with off color self effacing humor…….and oh yeah even a touch of maturity on a couple or three tracks (That’s why I drink, Hidden Meaning & No Fairy Tale)

Standout tracks:
The Evil of Drink
Happy Everything

The Gobshites: Songs Me Da’ Got Pissed To

March 5, 2011

This might be the fasted turn around for writing a review in the history of Shite’n’Onions – 24 hours – sorry all you bands that it took me months or even years to get around to writing your review. Picked up my copy of,  Songs…., last night at The Gobshites’ CD release party at Boston’s Four Green Fields and while I didn’t manage to be able to stick around long enough to hear the songs live, I did get to have a good listen over the 4GFs fancy assed sound system and boy did the Gobshites sound good and after a few spins of the CD today, The Gobshites still sound great over much smaller and less fancy assed speakers. Songs…. is a collection of Irish folk standard done in The Gobshites unique style – folkie, punky and spunky with a ton of irrelevant humor and sure you’ve heard everything here before (Wild Rover, Whiskey In The Jar and so on and so fort) but that doesn’t matter. Pick it up….it will be perfect for your Paddy’s day party.

The Gobshites: Get Bomber/Another Round

“Get Bomber” and “Another Round” are two separate CDs both released on the same day by one of my favorite bands. Boston’s own The Gobshites. The Gobshites basically take old punk-rock standards, preferably punk-rock drinking standards and give’em a good old Celtic headbutt in the nuts. Highlights on “Get Bombed” include “Nervous Wreck” (The Nips), “Alcohol” (Gang Green), “Too Drunk To Fuck” (Dead Kennedys) and “Long Way Back” (The Ramones with Tommy Ramone helping out The Gobshites on backing vocals). Highlights on “Another Round” include “Frigging in the Rigging” (Sex Pistols) and “Drinking and Driving” (Peter and The Test Tube Babies). Also, “When The Shite Hits The Fan”, The Gobshites first release has been remastered and re-released.


Shite’n’Onions: What the Shite

What can I say really? Unless you’re dead, there’s no real reason not to own this compilation… S’n’O II contains some of the best up and coming Celt-Punk (Or whatever) bands out there. Some of them you may know, and some of them you probably won’t. Containing 20 tracks from 18 of the best bands of the “genre” What The Shite is pretty much the ultimate mix tape ever. I seriously haven’t been able to finish any other reviews because this bad boy won’t leave my CD player. (Trust me, that IS saying something.) To say the least, I was surprised (and proud) when S’n’O Volume I came out. Ol’ Murph certianly had an ace card up his sleeve for that one. Shite’n’Onions Volume II is even better! An effin’ royal flush, folks!

Track One is called “Drunken Sailor” & it comes from the Blaggards. You might have heard the song “Drunken Sailor” before, but within two seconds of hearing this version you’ll agree this is one of the better versions out there. (Shay Given approved)

Up next is “Hogjaw” from Jackdaw. it’s a damn same I live so far away from these guys, because from what I’ve heard, Jackdaw’s live show will blow the roof off. Turn up the volume to 11 if you’d like an instant skylight for your home.

Three’s a charm, as they say. The Go Set hails from the shores of Australia, and instantly became of of my favorite bands, and “Sing Me A Song” is a great example. If you like DKM’s “Do Or Die”, you’ll love this!

Track 4 is reserved for The Kissers – “Kicked In The Head” Less than a week ago, The Kissers came through town, and all night long I screamed at the top of my lungs “You Bastards! Play Kicked In The Head!!!” As I’m sure anyone within 5 blocks could tell you that night, I’m a big fan of the song. I’m an even bigger fan of the band, even if their squeezebox player beat me at pool… (The table was crooked.)

Number 5 is for all those Cow-Punks out there. “Pub With No Beer” by Boston’s own, Three Day Threshold. What do they sound like you ask? Just imagine a drunken paddy punk with a boombox on his shoulder atop a galloping horse in full stride across the wild west trying find a sixpack before the pubs close outta do it…

Track 6: “Plastic Paddy” is also on “Liquordale” by The Peelers. it’s also S’n’o’s pick for 2004’s album of the year, and rightfully so, Let me guess, I no longer need to convince you any longer right?

On track number 7 there’s a song called “Blackheart” by Jugopunch. To be honest, I haven’t heard them before. So just so you know, I too will be purchasing an album from them. Wanna race?

Tracks 8 & 9 contain a 1-2 punch courtesy of Larkin. The left jab is called “My Day Of Reckoning” and the right upper cut is called “The Devil & I” If you’re a Southpaw, I apologize, just switch it around a bit! I think I can safely say that Larkin are atop the favs list here at S’n’O land.

Track 10 and 11 are from Mutiny. Aka: “Folk Punk For Punk Folk” If you’d like to hear some Aussie folk-punk with a slight case of scurvy, I highly reccomend listening to both “Struggle Town” & this unreleased version of “Drigging for Gold” All you scallywags out there will love ’em both.

12. The Gobshites – “Cheers” Do me a favor… get this album, go down to your local public house press the play button, grab a pint, hold it high, & cheer your mates. The Gobshites are playing, & good times are here!

Track 13 belongs to The Town Pants and their song “The Weight Of Words” I found out about The Town Pants from this very website, (Thanks, Murph!) The Town Pants recently released their best album to date, and this song is just a sample of what else is to come from a band I joking like to call “The Country Shorts” My god, that was just horrible…

#14 is IcewagonFlu’s “Trinity” not only do they provide the cover art folks, The multitasking Icewagon Flu also write some of the catchiest tunes this side of the pond. if you’re not dancing to this one, you don’t have a pulse.

Track 15. McGillicuddys “On The Rocks” The song isn’t excatly the newest track on the album, (2002) but who the hell cares, these guys are timeless. In fact, I’d love to hear another album from them soon. Check ’em out and get in line.

#16. Another band I need to hear more of are the Sharkey Doyles. “Kings Of The One Eleven” is a great introduction to a band I’ve been hearing alot about.

Track 17 comes to us all the way from England. “The Ballad Of Ali Abbas” from Warblefly. Let me tell you, I have all their albums, and can’t get enough of these guys. Top notch music, and without question, one of the best bands out there. A must have.

Track 18. The Pubcrawlers have come a long way. I remember hearing their demo a few years ago, and made a note to myself to keep an eye out for them. “My Brother Sylveste” proves to me that The Pubcrawlers have evolved into one of the best examples of Celt-Core out there…

Number 19. The Porters will make your jaw drop. German streetpunk covered from head to toe in Guinness. “Weila Weila” gets my vote for best sing-along of the album. If you enjoy this track wait until you hear “A Tribute To Arthur Guinness”

20. I was so excited to hear Barney Murray was making music again. The former lead singer of Blood Or Whiskey has returned to form with the previously unreleased “Troublesome Girl” I hope to hear from Barney, but I’ll take what I can get and be more than happy about it.

So there you have it. Shite’n’Onions Volume II – What The Shite… Look for it in your local record store, or better yet order it directly from the source.


Review By “Barnacle” Brian Gillespie

THE GOBSHITES: When the Shite Hits the Fans

Boston’s own The Gobshites put a different twist on this whole Celtic Punk sound – now instead of a punk band playing trad. Irish covers we have a full 7 piece Pogues inspired trad. group covering some of punks best drinking songs – including Sham 69, UK Subs, SLF, GG Allin, Sex Pistols, Ramones and Black Flag – ‘Guinness Boys’ originally done by The Business is a classic. A highly entertaining CD and a great live band – if you ever have the opportunity to see ’em live, then do it.