Release Date: 10/12/2018
Label: FOUR FOUR / Black Matilda Music
Location: The open seas
Current Lineup: (Per Facebook)
- Frankie McLaughlin: Vocals, tin whistle, guitar.
- Johnny McKelvey: Bass, vocals
- Gabriel Whitbourne: Guitars, vocals
- Adam Kenny: Mandolin, banjo, bouzouki, bodhran, acoustic guitar, vocals
- Pietro Della Sala: Drums, Vocals
Favorite Tracks: Saints Preserve Us, Bus Floor Bottles, Cold London Rain, Last Orders, If It Kills Me and Cupcakes
Sounds Like: Alternative Ulster, Dropkick Murphys, Flogging Molly, Real Mckenzies, The Mahones, Grinning Barrets, Mickey Rickshaw, Clan Of Celts, and 1916.
It’s no secret some of us here at CPRA are some bloody Celtic mates. Between A? and SkaBones there’s enough Celtic blood in the both of us to invade England. Ok we probably wouldn’t get far and our backs would go out fast haha. We are proud to check out the new Rumjacks album, “Saints Preserve Us”, out now on all major streamers! In case you’ve been hiding in hole in all these years. I found the Rumjacks back in 2011 by pure accident while searching for some new Celtic punk. I ran across their now Youtube hit song, “An Irish Pub Song”.
That video is currently sitting at 46 million views! I remember seeing it in 2011 and the counter was only up a few thousand if that. I kept thinking why hasn’t this song blown up yet? It took the song some time gain some steam, but look where they are now! Now we have a brand new album to join the ranks of the best of em.
So let’s check out, “Saints Preserve Us”. The writing on each song is excellent. The Rumjacks bring the the classic Celtic trad, the guttural punk, and each song is unique to the core. McLaughlin’s vocals are always right on point. McKelvey and Whitbourne in combination on guitar and bass, bring that classic Rumjacker sound. Oh how I have needed new Rumjacks music in my life!
The record starts off with, “Saints Preserve Us”. This one is immediately catchy and fun to sing along with. I love McLaughlin’s vocals on this one. Have you thought if an EMP went off and everything you owned that was electrical based just fried? Can you count on someone to hunt for food or grow it for that matter?
“I’ve been eatin’ outta garbage tins, (YOLO!)
I’ve been hittin’ up my cyber-firends,
Left swipe ass wipe not even for the rent,
A hash tag trash bag in search of my identity,
Come get your fix, I’ve got your clicks and shares,
I’ve got your medicine your kisses thoughts & prayers,
LOLMFAOMG I need to pee,
W to the F stop triggering’ me!!”
‘Billy Mickinley’, starts off with some great tin whistle. The drums are heart pounding in a marching band manner. Mike Rivkees from Mickey Rickshaw throws in some kick ass vocal assistance to McLaughlin. ‘Bus Floor Bottles’, is up next on the track list. This one seems to have a deep and powerful message. This song is very reminiscent of The Street Dogs. I can easily see Mike McColgan singing this one.
‘An por ar buile (The mad puck goat)’, is a cover of the traditional Irish song. This is by the way is the coolest fair ever. It celebrates a brave goat that warned the people of Killorglin from Cromwell’s invading army. The pipes really send this one home for me! This one also features Denis Dowling of the Clan Of Celts and Shelby Colt (London Celtic Punks) on backing vocals.
‘Last Orders’, is next up. I think it’s the mandolin playing or acoustic guitar, but it’s beautiful on the intro! This is a street rat love song. ‘Cold London Rain’, here’s another blast of a tune. The guitar riff shines for me while the vocals will draw you right in. I love the lyrics. I have never actually visited London, but I’m sure I would feel the same.
“Oh, pull me in, don’t let me drown here,
My aim is true & I’ve got so much more to give,
Dry my hair & kiss me gently,
And I’ll surrender up my fightin’ heart to you.”
‘Fare Evader’ slows the album down a bit, with a ska like juke. This one is almost anthem like, yet seems to have a darker undertone. ‘The Foreman O’Rourke’ is up next and probably my favorite track on the record. This is a classic folk cover, originally done by Matt McGinn, featuring the legendary Paul McKenzie, from the Real McKenzies.
‘A Smugglers Song”, is a hilarious, yet amazing tune. It’s about a stolen goods smuggler. Think Han Solo in the dirty London streets. My second favorite track up next is, ‘Dozen Good Reasons To Weep’. The build up of the progression gets your fist and heart pumping. The song slows down midway to an almost Northern Soul/Ska sound, and rebuilds into the progression.
McKelvey and Whitbourne shred on this track. Robert Collins (Blood Or Whiskey) plays trumpet on this one and nails it! ‘If It Kills Me’, is up next and this one is somewhat heartbreaking. Yet it will become your next favorite pub playing song. Caution this one may lower a tear or two.
“You’ve been smoulderin’ for years.
If it rips through my veins, tears me flesh from bone,
I’ll hear the voices of the faithful ‘You’ll never walk alone..’
If it kills me, if you wake and I’m gone,
If I’m dust on the wind and you’re left to your own,
I’ll love you,.. if it kills me,..
And it probably will.”
Last, but not least is ‘Cupcakes’. This speeds the record right back up. Every single person who loves punk, OI, rockabilly, rock ‘n’ roll, can relate to fantastic song. The Rumjacks should release a video for this song next! Check out the lyrics below.
“Some twunt said I wasn’t punk enough,
Am I not dirty filthy stinkin fucking drunk enough?
You tell me theres no rules and I’ll still fuck it up,”
Alright time to wrap this review up. This album is phenomenal. “Saints Preserve Us’, should join the short list of classic celtic punk albums, you just can’t put down. The additions of other great artists such as, Paul Mckenzie and Troy Zak (The Real Mckenzies), Mike Rivkees (Mickey Rickshaw), Maurizo Cardullo (Folkstone) whose bagpipes are wicked, Robert Collins (Blood Or Whiskey), Angek Roccato (The Clan), Francesco ‘Fry’ Moneti (Modena City Ramblers) and the infamous Denis Dowling (Clan Of Celts) make this album the ultimate celtic punk record.
- Saints Preserve Us
- Billy McKinley
- Bus Floor Bottles
- An por ar buile (The mad puck goat)
- Last Orders
- Cold London Rain
- Fare Evader
- The Foreman O’Rourke
- A Smugglers Song
- A Dozen Good Reasons to Weep
- If It Kills Me