The Grinning Barrets – “Riot”

Release date: August 18, 2018

Format: Digital

Label: DIY

Location: Vancouver Island BC

Current Lineup: Per Facebook

  • Jeremy Fiddy Drums/Fist Pumping
  • Bern Kinnear Bass/Bass/Bass
  • Dylan Wickham Guitar/Banjo/Mandolin/Screeching
  • Aaron Bergen Bagpipes/Whistles/Shouting
  • Pat Westmacott Guitar/Grumbling

Favorite Tracks: Armstrong Ave, The Altar of St Ayn, Last Call, Riot Crew

Sounds Like: The Real McKenzies,  Dropkick Murphys, Flogging Molly, The Rumjacks, Alternative Ulster, 1916, Flatfoot 56, The Mahones, and The Pogues


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Back in May 2018, CPRA was introduced to the likes of the Grinning Barretts, “The St Padraig’s EP”. This ep is still on my daily rotation of favorite Celtic punk albums/eps! When we got wind there’s a new ep in the works. I couldn’t wait to review it. Well that time has finally come!

RIOT EP – Available August/September 2018!

The ep kicks off with a catchy sing along, ‘Armstrong Ave’. This is a pure dedication song to Tim Armstrong and punk in general. The pipes are pumping, the riffs are a joy. The drums really bring the sound in as a whole. This one will be stuck in your head for days. It leads me to ask this question. What album/song did you hear first, that made you a punk?

Next up is the ‘The Altar of St Ayn’. Do you know someone who worships Fox news and Ayn Rand? This song’s for them! These guys really know to write some damn good punk tunes. This one has some great lyrics, and kick ass drums. The mandolin sounds beautiful.

“All hail the matron saint of avarice
Plutocrats professing piety
All hail the matron saint of avarice
Congressmen kneeling at her feet”

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‘Last Call’, is a great little fun song. This one will definitely get stuck in your head! The shreds are fun and simple. The vocalist nails his, “Whoas” masterfully. Look out Glenn Danzing! Here’s a tip for all you about to hit legal age to enter a bar.  The bartender does not want you. They want your tips!  Of course if you’re in a band you do get extra points.

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Next up is ‘Rising Of The Moon’. I love the pipes on this one. This is a call to arms song to fight oppression. ‘IBLD’, aka I’ve Been Let Down is next on the track list. Here we get to hear a really kick ass guitar shred, with amazing drum backing.

‘King Of Scab’, no this is not just another up the union song. This is about coal baron and union busting thug Robert Dunsmuir. I personally have always loved union based songs like, “Allentown”, “Power In The Union” and Floggy Molly’s, “Don’t Shut Em Down”.

“Hired thugs and police
Harassed the picket lines
Until men accepted starvation wages
In collapsing mines”

‘Riot Crew’, now this one surprised the hell right outta me. One would never really expect a celtic punk band to write a hardcore punk song. This song is energetic and speaks to the family in all of us. We all have family down at our local pub. Per, guitarist Pat Westmacott, ‘This is for our friends at Riot Brewing Co in Chemainus BC, winners of the best beer in the world at the world beer cup.”

Now let me go ahead and wrap this up. The Grinning Barrett’s have composed an ep to compete with the heavy hitters in the Celtic punk world. In just 7 songs I’ve wanted to do the following,

  1. Get Drunk
  2. Invade England
  3. Start a riot
  4. Push a Union Thug
  5. Slap a follower of Rand
  6. Play Rancid
  7. Get Drunk Again

I’m throwing this ep into the mix for CPRA’s album/ep of year for  2018!

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Links:

Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/thegrinningbarretts/

Bandcamp: https://thegrinningbarretts.bandcamp.com/

Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/thegrinningbarretts/

Ferocious Dog – The Red Album

I was recently turned onto Ferocious Dog by https://www.facebook.com/londonceltpunx/ and https://www.facebook.com/celtic.folkpunk/ . I owe these pages a massive amount of thanks for the introduction. I felt Ferocious Dogs deserve some US love.  As they hail from the UK it’s tough for punk bands to get across the pond. I decided a proper OI of The Red Album is a must! I’ll be reviewing the Google Play version. Sometimes not all online streamers have the same songs.​​

Black Gold – A song about England’s role in the African Slave Trade.  This is an amazing intro for the album. I was honestly a bit afraid the rest of the album may disappoint. However I was blessed as you read upon further. I love the mandolin and the fiddle. They blend in perfect sync. Have you ever thought about the lives lost, families destroyed and sheer terror brought on by slavery?

 

American Dream – Here’s the song that put Ferocious Dog on my radar. This song is definitely aimed at Donald Trump, his presidency, and the issues he should be held responsible for. The President like many before him prey upon the gullible. He is currently obliterating the American Dream or what’s left over. Our friends across the pond see him as a buffoon, as do we. “I don’t care what you say, I don’t wanna go home”.
Spin – Some great Celtic Folk Meets some awesome dark guitar riffs.  It speaks again of politicians manipulating the masses. As they spin our rebellion grows!

Black Leg Miner – This is an amazing cover of a 19th century English folk song.  I can’t help, but wonder how many lives were lost or unaccounted for in the coal mines of the world. This is great song for having a nice pint and a good think.
Together We Are Strong – A song about unity and fighting oppression. “It’s one rule for them and one rule for us”!

Together  We Are Strong – It’s in the title “It’s one rule for them and one rule for us”!

A & B – The sheer talent of this band is strong and obvious on this track. As this tune slows down in comparison to the rest, you realize the sadness. Yet it also made me feel uplifted at the same time. The use of the cello lends serious depth.
The Enemy Within – The backs of the worker have been broken for thousands of years, while the rich retain the fruits of labor. The kettle drum intros in with the fiddle, making for a brilliant marching song.

The Enemy Within – Again the fiddle shines on this track!
A Place I Want To Be – “Your campaign is in full swing, I know you’re gonna get evil on my ass, Let the mudslinging begin, we’ve all got loyal friends, they follow Facebook trends”. It seems with every election as voters we go in hoping for the best only to be extremely let down. Now we have other countries meddling in our elections? Let’s face it the 2016 US election was nothing, but a shit show. Now the biggest orange turd was elected. Let’s make this world a “Place I want to be”. Sometimes rebellion begins in places like factories, offices, and webzines.​​

Johnny I hardly Knew Ya– My all time favorite cover version!

Class War – I love the mandolin intro, mixed with a Northern Soul/Ska sound. The song speaks volumes about the rising levels of income inequality. This is by far my favorite song on the record. “Class wars are raging on the streets of England”. Although this line could be changed too easily fit anywhere in the world. The oppressed are fighting to survive. We cannot cope with rising costs of living, low wages not keeping up!

Small Town Hero– I love this one as well. Probably my second favorite track! This is about all of us growing up, doing our best, to be the good people we can. We are all just small time heroes.
In conclusion this album is a MUST download. In fact download all of their music! I’ve been listening to all of their albums on repeat. When it comes to music I generally like to keep politics out of it. I get tired of Anti Flag and Bad Religion type bands fairly quickly.  Not that I don’t love them, sometime they just lack creativity and depth. This is where Ferocious Dogs changes the spectrum. I’m giving this album a solid 10 /10.

Be sure to give them a follow here, https://www.facebook.com/FerociousDog/ . You can pick up their music on all major retailers. Be sure to buy some merch, https://www.facebook.com/FerociousDog/