Tuesday, February 5, 2008

In Which I Attempt to Make T.S. O'Rama Spend Money

For whatever reason, I've been listening to a lot of Celtic Punk Rock lately, especially bands like Flogging Molly, Enter the Haggis, Young Dubliners, Real McKenzies, and Oysterband. I'm like 1/16th Scottish and 1/32nd (Northern) Irish, so I guess it's legit.

Flogging Molly...well, they seem to me to be the Celtic version of Streetlight Manifesto: very talented, catchy, and...absolutely empty inside. Not just indifferent to religion, but openly hateful of it. As much as I enjoyed listening to the music of their album Drunken Lullabies, I kept noticing lyrics that just rubbed me the wrong way. Thus, no link-love for them.

Enter the Haggis, as T.S. already noted, is a mixed bag. "Gasoline" is really catchy, although perhaps a little overwrought. "Minstrel Boy" [I can't find a decent version] is a punk cover, virtually guaranteeing that I'll like it. "Music Box" and "Martha Stewart" are both good, although the latter is probably a little hard-edged for some tastes. There's also a really funny song on Let the Wind Blow High that I'll let you find for yourself.

The Young Dubliners and the Real McKenzies each cash in on the aforementioned punk cover craze, with, respectively, "The Rocky Road to Dublin" and "Farewell to Nova Scotia".

Oysterband is a bit older, and their songs are a little more mellow, too. I think "20th of April" is my favorite, although it was surprising to hear them singing in Spanish. "Another Quiet Night in England" is also good, and manages to be pro-worker without engaging in class warfare. Lastly is "One Green Hill" which could almost be a drinking song. [I couldn't find online versions of the latter two.]

My last post on this prompted T.S. to buy Casualties of Retail by Enter the Haggis; let's see if he feels the urge from anything above.


K said...

Just because a band aren't religious (or don't follow YOUR religion), it does not make them empty.

Most punk rock is indifferent or hateful of religion... just a thought.

HokiePundit said...

I agree with you. I listen to plenty of bands that, as far as I can tell, have no mention of religion or morality at all. I guess "Gasoline" and "Another Quiet Night in England" have some political-ish tinge, but certainly a big part of the ska I listen to (Reel Big Fish, Less than Jake, Doctor Manette, Hippos, etc.) pretty much avoids those issues, yet I don't consider them empty.

Are they shallow? Sometimes, although sometimes you're just looking to veg. Five Iron Frenzy is a "religious" ska band, but their songs which make me think most are often the ones not about faith.

Flogging Molly and Streetlight Manifesto actually strike me as empty. Each is hugely talented, but just full of disappointed cynicism which scarcely even rises to the level of anger.

TS said...

Bad, RB, bad. If I were Scottish I'd be more resistant to spending money. Although it's always good to help the economy...

I'm probably looking for a cross between Oysterband and The Real McKenzies. The McKenzies, as evidenced by a little trip to amazon.com & previewing their latest CD, appear to have had a bit too much caffeine for moi.

HokiePundit said...

The Young Dubliners don't fall into that sweet spot for you? I'm guessing The Pogues and Dropkick Murphys aren't your style, though.

TS said...

Yeah I should listen to some Young Dubliners - didn't make it out to amazon to listen to more. I do like the Pogues a lot. I think they're a bit less frantic than the McKenzie's. Haven't heard Dropkick Murphys yet.

Jack said...

Hoke, there's no reason you can't listen to real music once in a while.

Try the Chieftains.