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Draggin' the Days

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Album Review

This is the debut from Canada's the Mahones. Fusing traditional Irish folk songs, punk rhythms, and Celtic rock, a distinct parallel could be drawn between their music and that of the Pogues, especially given both bands' reliance on acoustic stringed instruments (banjo, mandolin, guitar), accordion, tin whistle, and gruff, boozy lead vocals. Like the Pogues, the Mahones fare better with their original compositions. "Star of the County Down" and "Raggle Taggle Gypsy" should have probably been replaced by vocalist and chief songwriter Finny McConnell originals. Both tracks simply suffer from overexposure in the Celtic rock arena and the Mahones offer nothing to distinguish their versions from the slew of others. On the other hand, tracks such as "A Drunken Night in Dublin" and "Back Home" offer the same regretful, bittersweet refrain so commonly found in the songwriting of Shane MacGowan. The rousing pieces "Across the U.S.A." and "Drunken Lazy Bastard", along with the slow, after-hours "London", are also exceptional McConnell originals that surely must have borrowed a page from their forerunners' handbook of Irish punk-rock.

Biography

Formed: 1990 in Kingston, Ontario, Canada

Genre: Rock

Years Active: '90s, '00s, '10s

Canada's premier Celtic punk rock party band was fittingly born on St. Patrick's Day in 1990 in Kingston, Ontario. Founding members were singer/guitarist Finny McConnell; Andrew Brown on tin whistle, keyboards, and accordion; Ger O'Sullivan on mandolin, banjo, guitar, and bodhran; bassist Joe Chithalen; and drummer Christos Smirnois. Four years later the group celebrated St. Patrick's Day again with its debut album, Draggin' the Days. They then played to enthusiastic crowds across Canada and south...
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Draggin' the Days, The Mahones
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