Live at the Rockwood Music Hall this week, Australia channeled Ireland and much ale was hoisted. Below, check out a couple of videos, courtesy Perfect Sound Forever.
BY JASON GROSS
Irish punk-gone-trad music is almost as old school as Irish traditional music nowadays with the Pogues’ landmark early albums over three decades old now. The boozy torch has been carried along by the likes of Flogging Molly and Dropkick Murphys and more recently, an Aussie quartet who picked up on the music of their fellow British outliers.
The Rumjacks date back to 2008 with three albums and a bunch of singles under their belt, making their way across the States for a tour, including stops at SXSW and NYC. For their Yankee trek, singer Frankie McLaughlin was laid up sick so their mandolin/bouzouki player (don’t laugh- the Mekons have one) Adam Kenny ably took over, using a music stand cheat sheet for the lyrics. With bassist Johnny McKelvey as the jovial MC (“this is the earliest and sober-est we’ve played so we’ll be the drunkest later”), they led the crowd through their catalog, including a stop at the Scottish ballad “Wild Mountain Thyme.” Reflecting the cross-current of the music, the crowd switched from jig dances to moshing in the blink of a song, even with a guest tin whistle player thrown in (Chiara De Sio from the Clan).