When it comes to patriotism, no one tops the Irish. You always know when someone’s Irish—like Italians, they broadcast this fact with tattoos, bumper stickers, and clever t-shirts about beer. By the same token, Celtic punk is an Irish novelty—bands like Dropkick Murphys and Flogging Molly have made waves through the red-haired lot of America, playing sub-standard punk with the melodies of traditional Irish folk songs.
So, knowing of the reputation of these feisty redheads, I was struck with indifference upon news of their new album, Within a Mile of Home. Before playing the album, I practiced an exercise in open-mindedness. I did my hardest to convince myself that something unexpected could be coming my way.
It was when Within a Mile of Home started that I felt my own foot fly backwards and kick me in my ass. Of course this is exactly what I was expecting! How can I expect a band to challenge themselves to outgrow their niche and attempt to broaden their horizons past sweaty, beer-soaked mosh-a-longs?
Like Har Mar Superstar or Tenacious D, Flogging Molly appeals to a certain demographic—the band does nothing to attempt to endear themselves to a bigger audience. Which is their choice, I suppose. I’ll stick to My Big Fat Greek Wedding and democracy, myself.