Going Out In Style - Dropkick Murphys
Born & Bred
The Murphs got style. Oh ya, gobs of it. Style is supposed to get you noticed and Boston’s legendary Celtpunks are in yer face. Going Out In Style, their 7th long play celebrates a fictitious wake for one Cornelius Larkin, a supposed Irish immigrant whose mourners (according to the video) denigrate the proceedings into the mire of debauchery and drunkenness. While the Murphs’ earachin’, gut-wrenchin’ delivery can exhaust even the most loyal fan over the long haul, (Al Barr and Ken Casey still duke out the vocals like an old-fashioned bar brawl) on Going Out In Style, the band has learned the laws of compression and release. By interspersing those in yer face punk anthems with moments of introspective if not acoustic relapse, the band has created an album that is thoroughly listenable from start to finish. Best of all (and much credit to producer Ted Hutt) is the unusually clear balance between over-driven amps and traditional acoustic instruments. Scruffy Wallace’s big highland pipes have no trouble matching sonic velocities with the buzz saw guitars and he marches in the most anthemic of the album’s tracks like the opener, Hang ‘Em High as if he’s being followed by a regiment pipe and drum corp. But, the tin whistle and banjo-driven Memorial Day for instance, loses none of its punch while exposing the Dropkick’s rootsier side. The same can be said about the next track, an accordion-lead pub sing a long called Climbing A Chair To Bed. Another great thing about the band is their unswerving, dogged persistence along the moral high road. It was two years ago that they reminded us of the things that really count in life on The Meanest Of Times, those being love and family. Going Out In Style continues the straight up, no bullshit messages. You have to go back to the Woody Guthrie - inspired Blackout album to hear good old blue collar protests like Deeds Not Words and Take ‘Em Down. Later the glockenspiel rings out, serenaded by Scruffy Wallace in the stirringly beautiful 1953. For craftsmanship, musicianship and intensity, the Murphs deliver consistently, stepping out and Going Out In Style.