Tag Archives: The Peelers

The Woods Band and the Mahones, w/ guests Siobhan and The Peelers – Several Canadian Dates (October 2003)

by Ol’ jimmy from Siobhan

I’d like to begin this review with a small message for our American readers. And that message is this:

Ha, ha.

Oh, look at us. We’re the United States. We’re big and powerful. We have most of the money in the world. We grab all the headlines. Our military could conquer Canada 50 times in a week and still have enough time for a relaxing weekend in Bermuda. We have the Dropkicks. We have The Tossers. We have Flogging Molly. We’re the centre of the universe!

Well, let’s just be clear here: Terry Woods and Phil Chevron just did a tour in CANADA. And it rocked both folk and punk ASS.

I mean, The Mahones were awesome, they always are. The Peelers kicked ass. The only real let-down was Siobhan, who played some of the worst music I had ever heard. I mean, I don’t want to be cruel here, but these guys were worse than Creed. They make Creed sound like the Mahones. But anyway, let me get down to the nitty-gritty, the real stuff. The Pogues.

On each night, Terry, Phil and their bad-ass Irish accordion player, James, followed up the Mahones’ set with an acoustic set of their own. This set included some tunes I’d never heard, such as beautiful instrumental “The Lament for Grosse Point” and “Brave New World”, a rousing folk number. And each night, they turned the house lights down, and Phil sang Thousands Are Sailing in an “Unplugged” style.

This was the song that first roused my interest in the Pogues, the song that started me on that long, dark, and drunken road to having a band. And to hear Phil himself sing it was beyond incredible. Shane was great on the album, but seeing this old, frail man sing his own song (on North American soil, even!) gives the tune a whole new power. He also did another song of his, “Faithful Departed”, a Radiators From Space tune that has become an underground classic in Irish music.

The Mahones jumped on stage again as the backing band, and out came “If I Should Fall From Grace With God”, “Young Ned Of The Hill” and “Gartloney Rats”, among others. Those of us in the room who understood what was going on were mesmerized, while those who had never heard the Pogues were amazed to hear Irish music being played so well, better then any band in Canada or the U.S. does. Terry’s fingers absolutely flew on the bouzouki, and his concertina work was masterful. Occasionally, when the sound was bad, I would turn to a band-mate and say, “I wonder if the sound guy realizes he’s fucking up the bouzouki sound for one of the five best players in the world.”

In the end, the shows were magical, and we all have Finny MacConnell from the Mahones to thank for organizing them. The last time Terry and Phil were on this continent, they were playing to five or six thousand people a night, and here they were, in dark underground clubs and halls, playing their hearts out to anyone who would listen. They weren’t trying to get famous, they were trying to show people what Irish music could and should be.

I’ll never forget seeing these guys, and getting to play banjo with them on “Gartloney Rats” is something I’ll take to my grave. But the experience was also humbling for all of us who play this music: there are still giants across the broad Atlantic who play far better than we do. Leave it to the Pogues to put a bunch of Canadians in their place. Health to you, boys, and don’t stay away too long.

Review by:
-Ol’ Jimmy (whose efforts to get Phil to say “Oooh Terrence! You farted!” in a high pitched, squeaky voice were sadly in vain)

The Peelers – live at The Celtic Ray Public House, Punta Gorda, Fl (August 9, 2003)

To the Peelers’ credit, they had just arrived in town a couple hours prior to the show after an eight-hour drive from Savannah, Ga., and went on to play nearly FOUR FREAKING HOURS (admittedly, with a couple of short breaks thrown in, but still!).

First, a bit about the venue. The Celtic Ray Public House — by the time you read this, management may have already completely split off the music room into a separate smoking bar called the Temple Bar Public House — is a small pub in Punta Gorda, Fla., which is about 90 minutes south of Tampa. It serves no domestic beer (!) and has the feel of a country pub in Ireland. It’s not a huge room, and the pub has traditional Irish music a few nights a week.

That said, The Peelers were a bit of a departure for the pub. It was only the second time it’s charged a cover for an event (the first was Black 47 in February), and owner Kevin Doyle was a little apprehensive about bringing in a band that was a large unknown.

(As the show approached, many friends from the pub were calling me “The Guy Who Brought The Peelers To The Celtic Ray,” as I had played a limited role as a matchmaker between the band and the pub. A lot of people asked me about the band, whom I’d never seen live before. I merely told them, I’d just heard their CD, which was very good, but I had very high expectations for their live show. I was nervous as an expectant dad.)

The Peelers, making their Florida debut, were also a little nervous. “We really didn’t know what to expect,” said lead singer Dave Barton. “We didn’t know whether to expect a young audience or old. A lot of these southern cities are known for older crowds.” They needn’t have worried. The band drew enough people of a variety of ages to make the room comfortably crowded. If the crowd was a little tentative as the show started, so was the band, which started at about 9:40 p.m. with no opening act to warm up the crowd.

If the band has a weakness (if you want to call it that) at this point, it’s their limited amount of original material, which I’ll go into later. They started with The Waterboys’ “Bang on the Ear” — halfway through, Kevin yelled out, “I fucking love these guys already!” A look around the room indicated this was a common theme. They opened with a set of standards, including “Finnegan’s Wake” and “Dirty Old Town,” and threw in a version of the “Broad Majestic Shannon” — the first of several Pogues songs that was played that night. They also did a song from their upcoming CD “Plastic Paddy” that I did not recognize or know the name of.

As the night grew longer, the crowd got younger, the Peelers got faster. They did their versions of “Irish Rover” (obviously minus Ol’ Jimmy of Siobhan, who guested for the song on their CD), Flogging Molly’s “Salty Dog” and allowed me to go up with them and do “Streams of Whiskey” (which I’d wanted to sing with a live band for a long time). The band also let Leslie, Kevin’s girlfriend, sing on a well-received version of “Fairytale of New York.”

All hell broke loose toward the end, with a mosh pit erupted in this small Irish pub, much to the delight of those that stayed until the last. A few people got knocked into a table near the stage with fish and chips for the band, and the fish went flying. They finished with some Clash songs — “London Calling” and “Should I Stay Or Should I Go” to a rousing, rowdy ovation.

“I thought at first, they (the crowd) was a little reserved. We were a little unsure where to go with the whole thing,” Barton said after the show. “In the end, it turned out to be a Peelers show.”

One could dismiss the Peelers as a cover band (which is how one newspaper alluded to them) if you wanted to look at it that way, as they’re still working on a repartory of original stuff. (Then again, when the Pogues were in their infancy, they did a lot of Dubliners stuff and traditional tunes, not to compare the two.)

I just look at The Peelers as a smoking live band. My body is still stiff from all the dancing/moshing that erupted toward the end. And I have no doubt that their original stuff, as it comes, will be fine, too. As a side note, they are really cool guys.

There’s a strong rumor that The Peelers will be coming back at some point. (“As soon as possible,” Kevin told me. “If they’re available, next week.”) They may have also opened the door for other bands of that ilk for the Celtic Ray, oops, sorry, Temple Bar. (I REALLY hope so.)

When The Peelers make their return appearance to Punta Gorda, I can’t freaking wait. And from the feedback I’ve received since the show, I know I won’t be the only one.

Review by Rob Shore

The Peelers: Palace of the Fiend

May 18, 2017

In 2004 The Peelers album Liquordale was Shite’n’Onions album of the year – always a good launching point for fame and fortune in the Celtic-punk genre. Then……… nothing………nothing for 13 years!!! Now we have have the follow-up, ‘Palace of the Fiend’. Thirteen tracks in all. That’s one for for every year since Liquordale.

So where have the Peelers been? New York, The Bronx and Afghanistan. San Diego, Harlem, Dublin and on to the Spanish Coast. Down south, up north. From St. Johns to Boston and back to Ballingarry.

What have they being doing? Fighting at Vinegar Hill and with General Meagher, pub crawling to Baltimore. Brawling with the Westies and hanging St. Michael. Sailing with St. Brendan. Drinking Guinness, snorting…., getting clean and sober, falling again. Fighting the Devil, fighting the final round, finding redemption.

And is ‘Palace of the Fiend’ any good? Fuck yeah. Double fuck yeah. This is Celtic-punk at it’s very, very best, fast, powerful, raw, the poetry of those who have really lived – part Pogues, part Mahones and part Behan. I know it’s only May but I’m prepared to call ‘Palace of the Fiend’ album of the year for 2017. See yah in 2030 lads.

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.

2006

Review By “Barnacle” Brian Gillespie

Various Artists: Paddy Rock Radio Volume 1

First of all hats off to Paddy Rock Radio’s John Bowels for putting this comp together. As someone who has put together a similar project I know what’s involved in pulling everything together and believe me it can be a major pain in the ass. Chicago based Paddy Rock Radio is a peer Shite’n’Onions and a long time supporter of the Celtic/Punk scene. Paddy Rock Volume 1 is a celebration of the shows 5th anniversary  and is a collection of both classic and new Paddy Rock. Some of the the music on offer here will be very familiar (The Peelers, The Prodigals, Greenland Whalefishers and The Mahones) and some stuff is new even to me. The new bands to me that I loved and now want to check out further are Flatfoot 56 (bagpipes and hardcore), The Killigans (Flogging Molly like with feeling and great vocals), Switchback (Reggae’n’Irish).

Full band list: Flatfoot 56, The Peelers, The Bloody Irish Boys, The Killigans, Jackdaw, The Go Set, The Mahones, Switchback, The Prodigals, Greenland Whalefishers, IceWagon Flu, The Scuttlers, The Broken Shillelaghs

August 2005

http://www.paddyrock.com/http://www.cdbaby.com/cd/paddyr

The Peelers: Liquordale

I know this album has previously been reviewed here awhile ago, but it’s too fucking good to only have had one S’n’O review! One of the biggest surprises all year, I will simply call “Liquordale” an epic album. I knew after hearing their 1st mini-album “Boots & Suits” that these guys were good, but damn, I had no idea they’d be this good!! On “Boots & Suits” they mainly played traditionals and random Pogue covers. You could tell that The Peelers were a talented band still trying to develop their own distinct sound. I remember there was an original on that album that had me begging for more. Well, my wish has finally been granted.

“Liquordale” Opens up with one of my favorite instruments, the Uilleann pipe. Imagine bowing your head and taking a moment of silence while you listen to the smooth sound of the elbow pipe, when suddenly, on “The Glen Will Rise Again” the galloping drums kick in and next thing you know, you’re running halfway up the wall, and slamming into everything in sight! Your dog starts barking at you, and snaps at that favorite hard-to-find Pogues T-shirt you’re wearing, before you finally calm down and return to a normal sane level of reality, and remind the dog to only bark & snap at the jackass neighbor kids across the street who enjoy asking me on a daily basis what I think of that watered-down pop-punk band, A Simple Plan…(For the record, They fucking suck, now quit talking to me, and wait patiently for your fucking school bus!) Err–Sorry ’bout that! Back to the album review…

The third track, “Katie Bar The Door” Has more or less, a nautical theme regarding coffin ships bound for Australia. Another standout is “The Sons Of Molly” obviously a Molly Maguire song that blends into “Catharsis” that for the record contains some kick ass fiddle work that had me stomping my foot so hard, I had to board up the hole I made in the floor. The thing I really noticed about the new version of “I’ll Meet You At The Bottle Of A Bottle” is how quickly these guys are becoming a top-notch Celt-Punk band. It probably helps that the main man behind the band, Dave Barton, was raised on a steady diet of The Pogues & The Clash. Not to leave any of the other band members out, the entire band sound about as tight as a ducks ass floating down some white water rapids 3 minutes after those jackass neighbor kids gave it an alka-seltzer.. Err– sorry ’bout that…

The Peelers do a great version of the traditional ditty, “The Little Beggarman” I especially enjoyed the squeezebox. On the tenth track, “Savannah (You’ve Been Good To Me)” I couldn’t agree more! After spending some time down there recently, I agree completely! (No, I don’t work for the Savannah Chamber Of Commerce, but if you’ve never been to “The Jewel of the South” before, I HIGHLY recommend checking it out!) On St. Paddy’s Day, Savannah grows from 200,000 to well over 450,000, claiming to hold the nation’s 2nd largest (per capita) Paddy’s Day festivities. It might just be southern folklore, but fuck it, the place is great anyway. Lyrically, my favorite track has to be “Plastic Paddy” Which is basically a song about being a drunken plastic paddy. Great stuff indeed.

So there you have it, The Peelers great album “Liqourdale”. An album so great it had to reviewed twice for Shite’n’Onions! If that doesn’t give you at least some sort of clue that this album is worth it, then maybe you should smack yourself silly in the face with a bat that has a crooked rusty nail sticking out of it and read this review again. Better yet, let me do it. Because after I raise the Jolly Roger flag & chase those jackass neighbor kids away from my front lawn with an 18th century cannonball blast I attached to my porch, I’ll be all warmed up & ready to go!

November 2004

Review by: Brian “Grumpy Neighbor” Gillespie

The Peelers: Liquordale

Somewhere on this Web site is a review of the first show where I ever saw the Peelers at the Celtic Ray in Punta Gorda. My only criticism of the band at the time was that they had a dearth of original material — their debut CD “Boots and Suits” contained only one original song. With their new CD “Liquordale” featuring 11 songs, including eight new originals, that’s less of a problem now.

“Liquordale” is in many ways the band’s real debut CD, and it’s a very good one. Starting with the slow ballad “Sweet Mary of the Bog” and seamlessly slipping into the much faster “The Glen Will Rise Again” and “Katie, Bar The Door”, you can see what the boys from Glengarry County are capable of. If you wanted to see how the band has grown musically, you could compare the version of “Meet You At The Bottom of a Bottle” on this release with that on “Boots and Suits”. It’s the same song (obviously), but is a richer sound.

The songwriting is very good too — one complaint of mine about some bands in the Celtic punk/rock genre, even some bands I enjoy. A previous review of “Boots and Suits” on this site said that the Peelers were a band to keep an eye on. Their new CD puts a little more urgency to that suggestion.

July 2004

Review by Rob “Hurricanes suck ass” Shore