We finally wave goodbye to 2021 with our annual Best Of list. Is it really twelve months since Norwegians Ogras waltzed away with the top spot? Once again it’s been a bit quieter than usual due to ‘you know what’ but we are bracing ourselves for a resurgent 2022! While it may not have been a plentiful year for Celtic-Punk albums the quality was, as ever, superb.
Remember this is only our opinion so feel free to backchat, commend, slag off or dissect our lists. We would love to read your thoughts in the comment section. The Readers Poll is back again this year so you can even vote on your favourite release of 2021.
We don’t pretend to be the final word as that my friends is for you…
(for more information on the release click on the title in bold green)
No doubt here for #1 and we are in agreement with Shite’n’Onions across the broad Atlantic there on the #1 Celtic-Punk album of the year. The Peelers may not be the most prolific of bands but when they do get a record out they pull out all the stops. Second place went to LCP favourites Ferocious Dog who took Celtic-Punk back into the English music charts for the first time in decades. The Rumjacks bounced back with an album that managed to please both fans and music critics in the wider ‘pop’ world. Was quite the year for Texan Celtic-Punk with four albums in the top 25 with Blaggards the highest placed while The Dropkicks new album seemed to be universally loved by all but they suffer, like a lot of established bands, from their new material never being given a fair chance to compete with the auld favourites.
1. THE PEELERS – Down And Out In The City Of Saints
2. FEROCIOUS DOG – The Hope
3. THE RUMJACKS – Hestia
4. BLAGGARDS – Blagmatic
5. DROPKICK MURPHYS – Turn Up The Dial
6. HOLD FAST – Last Of The Rebels
7. THE DEAD RABBITS – 7 Ol’ Jerks
8. . TORTILLA FLAT – New Stuff In An Old Barrel
9. DIE STROMMS – Vinem, Et Domina Canticum
10. THE CRAZY ROGUES – Advanced Roguery
11. THE OUTCAST CREW – Myths & Yarns
12. WILD COLONIAL BHOYS – Remote Ruaille Buaille
13. THE BLACK TARTAN CLAN – A New Beginning
14. GREEN GUARD – Devil’s Lung
15. SWAINN – Under A Willow Tree
16. THE RUMPLED – The Perfect Match
17. TIR NAN OG – Sing Ye Bastards!
18. THE POKES – Another Toast
19. HAWTHORN – All The Light We Cannot See
20. THE GROGGY DOGS – Grog O’Clock
21. THE REAL McCOYS – Outlive Death
22. BUGUL NOZ – Chat In The Freezer
23. JIMMY & RATS – Só Há Um Caminho a Seguir
24. THE SURFIN’ TURNIPS – Down The Allotment
Their were several albums that deserve another mention that didn’t qualify for the chart for various reasons. Raise Your Pints was the 6th in the series of Celtic-Punk compilations put out by MacSlons Irish Pub Radio. 20 songs from 20 artists. A few live albums the best of the bunch being The Spotted Dogs The Old Disgrace, Peat & Diesel live at the Barrowlands and the fantastic Bodh’aktan’s De part et d’autre de l’Atlantique (Live From Both Sides Of The Atlantic). Pete Walsh from The Gobshites put out a pretty amazing tribute compilation to Black 47, After Hours, while Uncle Bard And The Dirty Bastards released an acoustic album but the oddest album of the year had to be The O’Reillys And The Paddyhats 10th anniversary album In Strange Waters where they re-recorded some of their favourite tracks in a variety of styles including heavy metal and barber-shop!
If their was one release this year that was guaranteed #1 spot (even more so than The Peelers) it was Boston based Celtic-Punk supergroup Shadows Of Boston. By far the most widely read review for 2020 I haven’t met anyone who wasn’t blown away by it. It’s still available as a free download by the way, just follow the link! A very international top ten this with Boston (!), Czech Republic, Indonesia, Australia, France, USA, Nova Scotia, Belgium and Germany. 10 places – 8 countries. A lot of bands released single songs this year rather than official releases so I suspect that 2022 will see us rushed off our feet!
1. SHADOWS OF BOSTON – Demo
2. FOGGY DUDE – More Ain’t Less
3. THE WORKING CLASS SYMPHONY – Mulat Sarira Angrasa Wani
4. THE RAMSHACKLE ARMY – Highflyer
5. TOXIC FROGS – My Lucky Own
6. SEAN TOBIN AND THE BOARDWALK FIRE – St. Patrick’s Forever
7. THE FEELGOOD McLOUDS – Saints And Sinners
8. NEVERMIND NESSIE – Another Six Pack Of Drinking Songs
9. THE BLACK CLOVER – Just Another Pub
10. BLACK MATILDA – Black Matilda
This was a toss up between two completely different bands. The Spanish Pirates The Groggy Dogs eight track mini album Grog O’Clock was a brilliant mix of Folk covers, sea-shanties and trad based instrumentals but the award had to go to the recently formed Irish band THE OUTCAST CREW and Myths & Yarns. Ten outstanding original roaring Trad Punk songs full of tales of folklore, myths, sea voyages, singalong sea shanties and of course the odd session ! These guys don’t have much of a social media presence as yet but you can find them on Facebook.
Always the hardest #1 to decide as this covers so much ground but a well deserved #1 spot for Italian band Bards Of Yesterday who can certainly knock out a trad Irish tune or two. Tara’s Folk from France are another band who play as if their from the auld emerald isle itself while Dan Walsh plays just about the best banjo I’ve ever heard. Some very famous faces released solo albums like Phil ‘Swill’ Odgers from The Men They Couldn’t Hang’s, The Mahones Finny, Jim Lindberg from Pennywise and Justin Sullivan from the New Model Army who all put out great Folky albums.
1. BARDS FROM YESTERDAY – (EP)demia
2. TARA’S FOLK – Leaving
3. DAN WALSH – The Floodgate
4. PHIL ODGERS – Ghosts Of Rock’n’Roll
5. FINNY McCONNELL – Dark Streets Of Love
6. JIM LINDBERG – Songs From The Elkhorn Trail
7. SETH MARTIN – Through Dark Valleys
8. JUSTIN SULLIVAN – Surrounded
9. DARRAGH O’DEA – Tilly And The Postmaster
10. CHRISTY MOORE – Flying Into Mystery
Sadly this award use to be fiercely fought over but the years have not been kind to Celtic-Punk media and lethargy has sunk in for most and others have thrown in the towel but the champion this year is the original Celtic-Punk web-site Shite’n’Onions. Named after a fans favourite track from London Irish band Neck the site has been around for donkey’s and while it had it’s quiet periods it’s great to see it back. They’ve been busy over the last couple of years transferring the site over to WordPress and once finished began a return to regular reviews and articles. One of the best being it’s recent interview with Dave Barton of The Peelers.
This is the ninth year we’ve been doing these Best Of lists. It seems incredible looking back at some of the previous winners and also-rans just how many bands are still with us from Year 1. Have a look for yourselves just click on the year below to redirect.
* 2013 * 2014 * 2015 * 2016 * 2017 * 2018 * 2019 * 2020 *
THE LONDON CELTIC PUNKS SHOP
If you like what we do then why not visit our shop where you can buy all manner of Celtic-Punk tatt including t-shirts, badges, stickers, CD’s, fridge magnets, patches, Celtic nations flags and we just got in new for ’22 some bobble hats and polo shirts.
Alongside the Best Of polls we also run a special Readers Choice poll where you get to pick your favourite release of the year. This will be the fourth year it’s been running with Krakin’ Kellys, Mickey Rickshaw and The Go-Set our previously champions! Last year we had well over 1000 votes so remember the auld Irish adage ‘Vote Early – Vote Often’. There is only room to list the Top Ten albums but there is an option for YOU to write in your favourite release of the 2021.
The Poll will close at midnight on Sunday 31st January with the result announced soon after.
Sláinte, The London Celtic Punks Bhoys – January, 2022
We lost some wonderful souls in the last twelve months and we dedicate this to them.
Hope is a fantastic album best I’ve heard on a long tone
Good job and a nice read, London Celtic Punks! Thanks for the amount of work you put in keeping the scene up to date with news and articles! 🤘☘️
Ferocious dog ,best band ever
Thank you for the honor! Slainté🍀
Good to see some of the scenes lesser known bands getting a fair craic of the whip.
We are really honoured to be in the top 20 albums of 2021. Thanks a lot for your great support!
Joachim Tir Nan Og
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