The Rogues from County Hell are from Germany. They have recently released a 6 track mini-album, "Irish Dervish" that will be reviewed soon. This is the video for the song "Shane", a tribute to Shane MacGowan.
Happy Ol' McWeasel "Heard Ya Say"
Release date: March 17, 2015
Running time: 41:37, 12 tracks
There are quite a few long-awaited albums that have been out or are going to be released in 2015: The Rumjacks, The Real McKenzies, Mr. Irish Bastard, The Peelers … However, the one that I was eager to listen to was Happy Ol’ McWeasel's second album, “”Heard Ya Say!. The seven Slovenians first album, “No Offence”, was a gem. But, IMHO, the self-penned songs were far better than the Irish standards. Then, I wanted to know which approach they would follow in their sophomore album. Fortunately, Gregor and the boys have delivered 12 top-notch originals that make this album a must have.
“Heard Ya Say!” has all the ingredients for success: a well-balanced mix between electric instruments (guitar, bass and drums) and folk instruments (accordion, banjo and viola); a fantastic singer and great backing vocals; punk metal and hard rock arrangements; infectious acoustic themes … and a Central European “appellation d’origine” sound.
Let’s focus on some of the songs. “Blow” is my favourite song on the album: one listen to the acoustic guitar, but soon accordion, guitars and drums grab you into a maelstrom. Gregor vocals are perfect, there is a viola and banjo solo, some seagulls sounds and then the electric guitar part. A kick-ass hard-rock number with a Meat Loaf twist.
Another highlight is “On Your Own”. It’s an epic song with an excellent folk theme. Banjo, viola, accordion, backing vocals ... everything fits on this well-oiled number.
“Away” has an acoustic beginning with viola and accordion, and then it burst into a powerful hard rock song with gang vocals and electric guitar.
”Badger and The Coon” is a lively song featuring accordion and fiddle. Happy Ol’ McWeasel give Paddy and the Rats a run for their money with this catchy song.
“Running through” is a number on which the folk instruments weight is maybe smaller, but it’s an excellent song with guitars and great vocals as usual.
I've named a few songs, but the average level is very, very high: “Join the Crew” with street punk gang vocals and sharp guitars, “Can’t Wait” with its pop-rock from the 80’s flavour, “Left Behind”, and Americana number with Flatfoot 56 echoes, “World to See”, a punk goes metal song, or the opening number “Heard Ya Say!”. And remember, the album has been produced by Bezjak and Happy Ol' McWeasel, and mastered by Finnish mastering wizard Mika Jussila at Finnvox. "Heard Ya Say!" digital version can be downloaded for free from the band's website, but CDs can be bought from the band's store too.
Happy Ol’ McWeasel have joined the selected group of European bands that are stretching the boundaries of Celtic punk-rock. They have decided to join the ranks of the likes of Sir Reg and Paddy and The Rats and have delivered a master piece. Hats-off!
01. Heard Ya Say! 3:56
02. Good Deeds 3:08
03. Away 3:19
04. On Your Own 3:49
05. Badger and the Coon 3:10
06. Join the Crew (Anthem)
07. Not True 3:48
08. Can‘t Wait 3:16
09. Blow 3:32
10. Left Behind 4:10
11. Running Through 3:39
12. World to See 2:53
More Power to Your Elbow "Until the Last Note Fades" self-released Release date: 8 November 2013 Running time: 39:21, 10 tracks
More Power to Your Elbow rocks! The eight piece band from Co. Tyrone released their third album in 2013. Their fans have had to wait 17 years to listen to the follow-up to their second album “Fingers of Fun” (1996). There are plenty of Celtic rocks bands everywhere, but unfortunately a lot of fans don’t know that the likes of More Power to Your Elbow and Goats Don’t Shave delivered several essential albums in the 90’s. More Power to Your Elbow members have grown-up, but they keep on playing infectious sets of tunes and great songs.
The album kicks off with a set of reels titled “Two New Bows”. Keyboards, tin whistle and banjo showcase the magic from Ireland. It’s followed by a song written by Gerry Cunningham and sung by bassist Patsy Montague, “I Won’t Go”.
Track no. 3 is another set of reels, “The Block Set”. The boys and the girls do a fantastic job and I’m sure that you’ll enjoy these tunes.
The next song is a sort of a tribute to the Gaelic Games: "Our Game!". The “Foggy Dew” theme is featured along the song. The lyrics have been written by Gerry and there is a reel titled “Sam’s Fancy” written by multi-instrumentalist Pat Casey and fiddler Clare McCrystal.
Track no. 5 is a set of tunes called “The Carmen Express”. Tin whistles, harmonica and banjo can be heard on this amazing number. The Carmen Express was a train that linked a rural district known as Carmen with the rest of Ireland. Unfortunately, the service was discontinued and the railway was dismantled.
“So Far Away” is a poignant emigration song. Traditionally, thousands of Irishmen have been forced to leave their country. During the Celtic tiger days, all the people were thinking that these days were over. But once again job opportunities are scarce and young people are obliged to go abroad.
“Until the Last Note Fades” is an original tune. It has been written by Fiddler Clare McCrystal and multi-instrumentalist Damian Cullen. Brillliant!
The next number is a song titled “I Don’t Mind”. It has a country twist and it’s sung by Gerry.
“More Than One Love” is an amazing set of tunes covering different styles: rock, reggae, Scottish folk music and Irish folk music. The final result is perfect, another evidence that More Power to Your Elbow instrumentals kick ass.
To finish up, More Power to Your Elbow deliver another interesting song, “Every Time”. Gerry wrote this song to celebrate the birth of his second daughter Maighread.
The album packaging is a digipak with a 18 track booklet. Every single piece of information is provided: liner notes to every song, acknowledgements, credits, line-up, guests, thankyous, band pics, member pics … a real labour of love.
If you’re looking for real Celtic rock album with a perfect balance between sets of tunes and songs, or musicianship and passion, buy More Power to Your Elbow “Until the Last Note Fades”.
01 - Two New Bows 4:36 02 - I Won't Go 3:36 03 - The Block Set 4:14 04 - Our Game! 4:29 05 - The Carmen Express 3:26 06 - So Far Away 3:55 07 - Until the Last Note Fades 3:32 08 - I Don't Mind 3:06 09 - More Than One Love 4:10 10 - Every Time 4:13
The Bay Street Bastards "s/t" Self-released
Release date: 29 November 2014
Running time: 31:21, 7 tracks The Bay Street Bastards are our current Band of the Month. This Canadian seven piece band released their 7 track debut album at the end of 2014. Several interesting CDs from Canada have been reviewed recently (The Shillelaghs "Bury Me at Sea" and River Jacks "s/t") and this one can be filed together with them. Why? Because The Bay Street Bastards also play their own brand of Celtic/folk punk based on self-penned numbers and they don’t try to follow the two well-known “schools” (Dropkick Murphys and Flogging Molly), but to develop their own sound which is Canadian to the core. In fact, instruments such as cello are not usual in the folk punk bands, and the drumming is really peculiar.
The album begins with “Same Old Shenanigans”, a song about a great night (drinking and fighting). This number sets the pace for the rest of the album: guitars, backing accordion, special drumming, gang vocals and a cello part at the end of the song.
The second track is titled "Arthur’s Port". Thunder Bay city was born in 1969 when the towns of Fort William and Port Arthur merged. There is some banjo, an overall epic sound and sing along chorus on this number about living and working at the docks in Arthur’s Port.
“Fool’s Gold” is another fast-paced punk number with a working class twist: “I don’t give a fuck what you say / I don’t give a fuck about the money you make / I don’t want to hear of those cars you drive or vacations that you take / You think us sheep are all the same / Cause life’s so hard when everyone knows your name”
The following song is one of my faves. In fact the guys have a lyrics video on YouTube for this number. “Distill My Beating Heart” is a love song to whiskey and beer. It has a folkier touch with accordion, cello, and, I think, glockenspiel. A fantastic number to sing along at the bar.
“Rum Runners from Hell” is the “different” number on the album. A sort of a psychobilly song about Al Capone coming back from hell to bootleg Satan’s booze. Great lyrics!
The CD is coming to its end and the level goes higher.”Slappywags” is, IMHO, the best song on the album. Banjo, fiddle and accordion can be heard on this tribute to their “greatest little boozer”, Slappywags. Yes The Bay Street Bastards write song about alcohol, but also about bars.
The last song has the word “last” on its title: “Last Call”. I love this song too: fiddle, accordion, guitar work, backing vocals and a Whiskey Wagon attitude. Lyrically the song is close to the opening number.
The Bays Street Bastards self-titled album is packed in a jewel case. It has a 14 page booklet with all of the lyrics, a black and white pic of the band and pics of every single member. The back cover looks like a restaurant bill on which the dishes are the songs titles. Curiously, the guys forgot to include the credits: the line-up is not mentioned and there is no info about where the album was recorded and who produced, recorded, mixed or mastered the album.
Canada keeps on offering kick-ass bands that have something new and different to add to the Celtic/folk punk scene. Grab a copy of The Bay Street Bastards CD and a glass or your favourite beer or whiskey and enjoy them together.
1 - Same Ol Shenanigan's 2:50
2 - Arthurs Port 3:56
3 - Fools Gold 3:21
4 - Distill My Beating Heart 5:22
5 - Rum Runners from Hell 5:38
6 - Slappywag's 4:27
7 - Last Call 5:20
Keilly's Folk "AIRISH", The Bay Street Bastards "s/t" and The Rijsel Irish Boy'Z "Whiskey'n'Beer" are the featured albums at Celtic-Folk-Punk Radio.
This is the weekend schedule:
Friday 10 April 2015
6h00, 10h00, 14h00, 18h00 and 22h00 (CET, Paris-Berlin-Rome time)
Saturday 11 April 2015
2h00, 6h00, 10h00, 14h00, 18h00 and 22h00 (CET, Paris-Berlin-Rome time)
Sunday 12 April 2015
2h00 (CET, Paris-Berlin-Rome time)
There are two different playlists, and therefore every 4 hours the songs won't be the same. Besides, the order will be different every day. That is, if you can only listen to the radio on Friday, for instance, at 22h00, you can listen again on Saturday at 22h00, since the songs won't be exactly the same.
Carotté "Punklore et trashdition" Slam Disques SLAM-2402 Release date: 10 Februray 2015 Running time: 45:43, 14 tracks
The Celtic rock/Celtic punk/folk-punk scene in Quebec is really amazing. There are quite a few bands singing in English: Farler’s Fury (Bagpipes punk), Drunken Dogs (Pogues infused stuff), Irish Moutarde (bagpipes Celtic punk), The Irish McDrinkers (Celtic punk), The Magotty Brats (a Celtic punk band that has evolved into a folk punk band). But some bands have also decided to sing in their mother tongue: the sadly defunct Celtic punk band Corrigan Festand the Celtic (punk) rockers Bod’haktan. Médé Langlois realized that there were a lot of bands playing Irish and Scottish inspired material mixed with punk, but there were no bands giving a punk twist to the songs from their ancestors. Then, he made up his mind to form a real Quebecer folk rooted punk band. He called three traditional musicians that played in a traditional folk band called Les Quêteuxand a couple of friends that have played in punk bands and Carotté was born in 2012: Médé Langlois (electric guitar, bckg. vocals), Manu Lavallée (banjo, harmonica, guimbarde, acoustic guitar, backing vocals), Eric Roberge (lead vocals), Étienne Bourré-Denis (fiddle, jew's harp, mandolin, feet, bckg. vocals), Max Doré (drums, bckg. vocals) and Simon Lavallée (bass, bckg. vocals)
To be fair, Carotté would not be “strictly” the first band to play traditional Quebecer music with a punk attitude. La Drave did something similar. But it’s true that La Drave also played some Celtic jigs and reels that are commonly played in the Quebecer folk and Carotté has focused on the songs in French. To put it in a nutshell, Carotté would be the bastard sons of La Bottine Souriante.
The six French speaking guys have released a 14 track album with the most suitable title: “Punklore et trashdition”. The music is 100% rooted in the tradition and the lyrics cover traditional topics, but also some matters from the 21st Century. The blend of traditional instruments and rock instruments is perfectly balanced and the production by Vincent Peake is impeccable.
“La visite” is the first track on the album. It’s a song about the visit of those rude relatives that arrive with all their noisy children, eat everything and once they’ve finished, they leave straight away. “Le bonhomme” features harmonica and a great vocal performance. “Invisible” is the first single and a video for this track was shot. The percussion kicks ass and the fiddling is great on this number with punk lyrics.
“Evolution” is another number with updated lyrics. La Bottine Souriante shadow is present on this song: the traditional way of singing (the singer sings one line and then the rest of the band repeats the same line) and the addictive tune that will make you dance. “Chers Canadiens” is an upbeat political complaint against the government.
“Taper la bizoune” starts with a Jew's harp. It’s an awesome number with lyrics in the traditional style. A real tongue twister with an addictive tune at the end. The next number is called “Embâcle” and the lyrics have traditional things and new stuff.
“Bouteille de rhum” is the right blend of traditional song and punk song. Once again, a tongue twister and fantastic tunes at the end. “Veillée chez Médé” is a song about a party at Médé’s song. Maybe I should have mentioned that Médé lives in a farm. Back to traditions, let’s call the neighbours and dance to the music! (and don’t forget the booze and the “cigarettes”)
And just when the album is finishing, the best song on the album arrives: “La bonne femme Gendron”. This song tells the story of a woman who is going to milk her cows. Unfortunately, the old fart doesn’t have anything to filter the milk. Then she uses her clothes that, to tell you the truth, are not clean. Thenrefore the milk she gets is not white, but brown. Anyway, she makes her cheese and sells it to the Englishmen, who find it delicious. That would be the proof that the Englishmen like to eat shit.
And the last number is the new ode to beer in French language. All of us enjoy “La bière” by Les Garçons Bouchers, and now we have another beer anthem to sing-along.
“Punklore et trashdition” is available both in CD and digital versions. It can be purchased from Bandcamp and iTunes. The digital version on iTunes includes a couple of extra songs. All the lyrics to the songs can be found on Bandcamp.
My advice: even if you don’t speak French, Carotté “Punklore et trashdition” is an excellent album that you’ll enjoy. Yes, it’s not a “Celtic” punk album, but it's a folk punk gem. Forget your prejudices and give it a try!
01. La Visite 02:15 02. Le Bonhomme Qui Riait 04:15 03. Invisible 03:29 04. Évolution 02:58 05. Chers Canadiens 03:45 06. Souffrance 01:56 07. Tape La Bizzoune 03:16 08. Embâcle 02:36 09. Un Gars Du Far West 03:28 10. Les curés et les patates 04:26 11. Bouteille De Rhum 03:16 12. Veillée chez médé 03:00 13. La Bonne Femme Gendron 03:32 14. La Biere 03:03 15. Allons à la taverne (bonus, only on iTunes) 2:28 16. Nous partirons (bonus, only on iTunes) 2:40
it is with deep regret that we announce that our singer Barna Marthy has decided to leave the band. We are grateful for all the beautiful moments and memories of the last six and a half years that we spent together. We will never forget his contribution to Firkin's music.
All of our booked dates will happen as planned with our new singer Andor Kovács Nemes who has convinced us with his outstanding talents and human values. Please welcome him with your embracing love and energy, so that he could give it back to you multiplied. :)
You may join us and get firkinized on tour:
April 11 – Esztergom (HUN) @ Sportalsó April 18 – Budapest (HUN) @ Dürer Kert April 30 – Willofs (GER) @ Veteranentreffen Willofs May 2 – Lviv (UA) @ The Flugery Lvova May 28 – Budapest (HUN) @ Budapest Park June 6 – Trebsen (GER) @ Schloss Trebsen June 26 – Vonyarcvashegy (HUN) @ Open Air Festival June 27 – Tata (HUN) @ Víz-Zene-Virág Festival July 3 – Bochum (GER) @ Bochum Total July 3 – Vorselaar (BE) @ Na Fir Bolg July 5 – Bad Nieuweschans (NL) @ Keltisch Midzomer Festival July 14 – Körmend (HUN) @ AlteRába Festival July 15 – Velence (HUN) @ EFOTT July 18 – Dechantskirchen (A) @ Burg Thalberg Burgfest July 19 – Balatonszemes (HUN) @ Szemes Festival July 25 – Padina (RO) @ Padina Fest August 5 – Munich (GER) @ Backstage August 7 – Balve (GER) @ Balver Höhle August 12 – Budapest (HUN) @ Sziget Festival August 15 – Kolarovo/Gúta (SK) @ Open Air Festival August 21 – Aichwald (GER) @ Goldgelb Festival August 22 – Chodova Plana (CZ) @ Beer Festival August 28 – Stoob (A) @ Open Air Festival
Nevermind Nessie "Story of a Lost Generation" Self-released
Release date: 6 March 2014
Running time: 45:01, 13 tracks
Belgium. Beers, lots of beers. Moules frites. Vlaamse patat. Chocolates from Leonidas. I could follow, but those are sterotypes. Now, let’s focus on Celtic punk. Black Tartan Clan, of course. And Nevermind Nessie. Don't forget Nevermind Nessie.
Nevermind Nessie were our Band of the Month in October 2012 and their 4 track EP was reviewed here. The EP got a rave review, thanks to their fresh sound and the band’s approach. Instead of cover the usual ballads, Nevermind Nessie wrote their own songs featuring traditional tunes.
Three years later, Nevermind Nessie have delivered their long-awaited debut album. The core of the band remains the same (Hendrik on vocals and electric guitar, Vince on button accordion and tin whistle and Sam on drums), but some line-up changes have taken place (Pavel on fiddle instead of Irena and Tijl on bass instead of Reinoud). The kids from Lokeren have grown up and their new work is better than expected. The album is titled “Story of a Lost Generation”: Celtic punk at its best, but also some Flemish, Dutch, Breton and Italian drops are added to the mix.
The opener is called “Party in Sin City” and it’s a kick-ass song with great chorus to sing-along. The guitar work, rhythm section and fiddling are perfect. “Off with Your Head” is a festive number featuring fiddle and accordion with a chrous à la The Pokes. The following track is dedicated to St. Patrick’s Day, "Best Day of the Year". The traditional tune is “The Ten Penny Bit” and Pavel and Vincent do a great job on fiddle and tin whistle. This number will become a classic St.Patrick’s Day song soon.
“Will You Come to Dance” it’s a song about weekends at an Irish pub. Nevermind Nessie have taken the music of “Cam Ye O’er Frae France” and bassist Tijl have written the lyrics to this addictive track. "Liberty" is a self-penned number featuring the tune “Burren Shores” written by Vincent. It has a catchy chorus similar to the Levellers old songs and class performances by Vincent and Pavel again on tin whistle and fiddle. That song is followed by “Raise the Flag”, the sailors’ song on the album. The tune has been written by Vincent and the lyrics by Hendrik (the main lyricist of the band).
The next number is the title track to Nervermind Nessie debut album, “Story of a Lost Generation”. This time the lads deliver a social complaint about the economic crisis that seems to have no end. They have added the “Swallowtail Jig” and the song has got a reggae treatment similar to the last Blood or Whiskey album. Track no. 8 features different reels: “The Merry Blacksmith”, “A Cup of Tea” and Vincent’s Reel. The lyrics have been written by Hendrik and Vincent and obviously it’s not the traditional song that both Planxty and Steeleye Span recorded. “Billy Ryan” is a traditional set of polkas, “Ryan’s Polka” and “Bill Sullivan’s Polka”. The former has been covered by a lot of bands, but Nevermind Nessie rendition is brilliant. The latter is the perfect choice, as normally “Ryan’s Polka” is played together with “Ballydesmond” or “Murphy’s Polka”. If you don’t know which tune “Bill Sullivan’s Polka" is, just listen to Oysterband “Don’t Slit you Wrists for Me”, since it’s the polka that is featured on that song.
Hendrik has put lyrics in English to a traditional Flemish song titled “Jan Mijne Man” on “I Know a Man”. They have also adde a breton “An dro” to the song. Hendrik has also written the lyrics to “Night of the Falling Stars”, a fast-paced celtic punk number featuring “The Blarney Pilgrim”. “Luiaards met Baarden” is a medley of two Flemish/Dutch songs, “Het Luiaardsgild” and “Al Die Willen Te Kaap’ren Varen”. To finish up, Nevermind Nessie play an Italian tune, “Tarantella” and obviously accordion (Vincent) and mandolin (guest Folkert Van Kerkhove) are played.
The album has been recorded by Hendrik and the final result is amazing. “Story of a Lost Generation” is packed in a six panel digipack enclosing an eight page booklet. Every single piece of information is provided: band’s links, credits and guest, lyrics, the titles of all of the tunes that are played and full band and single members ‘pics. I strongly recommend to buy the CD instead of the digital version of the album.
“Story of a Lost Generation” is a top-notch album that you should add to your collection. The five guys from East Flanders have been able to improve all the attractive things from their previous EP and they deserve a bigger exposure. Nevermind Nessie, together with the Italian band The Clan, have probably offered something fresh and new to the scene. Both of them are young, but they are excellent musicians that are able to write infectious numbers. If you are working for a Celtic festival in Central Europe, maybe you should think over hiring these guys for your bill.
01 - Party in Sin City 3:34
02 - Off with Your Head 3:38
03 - Best Day of the Year 2:53
04 - Will Ye Come to Dance 3:15
05 - Liberty 3:40
06 - Raise the Flag 4:48
07 - Story of a Lost Generation 3:34
08 - The Blacksmith 2:59
09 - Billy Ryan 2:46
10 - I Know a Man 2:44
11 - Night of the Falling Stars 3:27
12 - Luiaards met Baarden 4:25
13 - Tarantella 3:11