They’re loud, aggressive, fun and hard to ignore. Dropkick Murphys are back with a bang. Their new release entitled 11 Short Stories of Pain and Glory has everything one would expect from a Dropkick Murphys’ album. Punchy riffs, songs about fighting and drinking are all here on this record.
It begins with an instrumental called ‘The Lonesome Boatman’ and from there the album picks up pace and reverts back to archetypal songs one expects from the Boston band. ‘Blood’ is a song that is all about fighting. The chorus,“if you want blood/we’ll give you some/blood/straight from the heart until the job is done”. The riffs are Clash-esque, they are energetic and catchy. Joe Strummer would be impressed.
The lyrics and songs have serious and grave overtones to them. Tracks such as ‘Rebel with a Cause’ and ‘Paying My Way’, encapsulate the struggle of being down on the losing side of life. There is a massive opiate problem in America and these songs touch on the battles people face on a daily basis.
However, there is no song more serious than ’15-4-2013′. It’s a tribute to the victims of the Boston marathon bombings. A chilling, sombre tune with a simple meaning behind it. “We’re all just people/trying to make our way/the memories never fade/we stand here together/we bow our heads and pray.” No matter if you’re teacher or a preacher, a tee total or addict, we’re all just trying to make it through life regardless of politics or religion and that is the message they’re conveying here.
For all the doom and gloom, the album still has fun and raucous elements to it. ‘I Had A Hat’ is a kin to ‘Kiss Me I’m Shitfaced’ from the Blackout album. They are loud, fun and beguiling, it’s what makes Dropkick Murphys the soundtrack to Irish Pubs all around the world.