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Gloatin' and Showboatin': Live On St. Patrick's Day

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Album Review

Chicago's Tossers predate bands like the Dropkick Murphys and Flogging Molly, having been at it blending Celtic folk and brash punk since the days when the Pogues themselves were still a going concern. Indeed, they are about as close as an American band has so far come to the glory that is the Pogues, in that this is not basic-model three-chord ramalama punk decorated with the occasional tin whistle, but proper, solid Irish folk, with all the sentimentality and humor that entails, played with the aggression and spirit of punk rock. Over a decade and a half into their career, the Tossers finally put their high-energy live show on disc with the tremendously fun Gloatin' and Showboatin': Live on St. Patrick's Day. Recorded in front of a partisan hometown crowd, this 15-track set covers tracks from throughout the band's career. Highlights include a storming, venomous version of the antiwar tune "Johnny I Hardly Knew Ye" and the full-on raveup "Buckets of Beer," in which singer Tony Duggins sounds so blinded by the titular substance that he might as well be singing in Gaelic, which he in fact does on the fiddle-led traditional tune "Preab San Ol." But in fact, the entire album is a raucous good time, as shown by the second disc in the set, a DVD of the entire show (including the encore, which didn't make the CD cut) and a handful of the Tossers' music videos. It's basically a must for any Tossers fan, and may make some new recruits besides.


Formed: 1993 in Chicago, IL

Genre: Alternative

Years Active: '00s

The Tossers formed on Chicago's South Side in the early '90s, predating such popular Irish punk bands as the Dropkick Murphys and Flogging Molly. Comprising members Mike Pawula (guitar), T. Duggins (vocals, mandolin), Aaron Duggins (tin whistle), Dan Shaw (bass), Bones (drums), Rebecca Manthe (violin), and Clayton Hansen (banjo), the seven-piece band blends Celtic rock, punk, pub singalongs, traditional folk, and a tangible love of beer. The Tossers released four albums -- We'll Never Be Sober Again...
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Gloatin' and Showboatin': Live On St. Patrick's Day, The Tossers
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