Monday, March 16, 2009
Top o' the mornin' to ya!
St. Patrick's Day is Tuesday, so I thought it only fitting that this week's clip should come to us from the Emerald Isle. In fact, the luck of the Irish shines upon you: this week I thought I double shot was in order!
First off, the band that Trouser Press once dubbed "the best band ever to come from Northern Ireland," The Undertones. Starting with 1978's "Teenage Kicks", The Undertones put together a string of fantastic punky/power-poppy records that swiftly earned them the nickname "the Irish Ramones." While you can definitely hear that influence in their earliest material, by 1980 they had settled into a moodier, almost neo-psychedelic sound (check out 1980's "Wednesday Week" or 1981's "Beautiful Friend" to hear for yourself.) Sadly, the ride was over in 1983 when lead singer Feargal Sharkey left to pursue a solo career. The Undertones have reunited a few times in recent years for the occasional shows, but the magic of their moment is captured best where and when it started - in 1978, with "Teenage Kicks":
Now then, no St. Patrick's Day is complete around my house without a good bit o' The Pogues! Also rising out of the Irish punk scene, The Pogues (shortened from Pogue Mahone, or "kiss my ass" in Irish slang) combined the energy and attitude of the era with traditional Irish folk music. 1986's Rum, Sodomy and the Lash brought The Pogues to most people's attention, and it is simply a stunning album. In honor of St. Patrick's Day, lift a mug of green beer along with Shane MacGowan and his band (who, in this clip, looks as though he's had more than a few - it's one of the most classic examples of drunken lip-syncing you'll ever see!) and sing along with "Sally MacLennane"
Again, if you have suggestions for clips for future installments of NW4NW, please let me know in the comments. For now, a Happy St. Patrick's Day to you all, and may you be half an hour in heaven before the Devil knows you're dead!