Tag Archives: Lucky Trolls

LONDON CELTIC PUNKS PRESENTS THE BEST OF 2022!

It’s that time of year again for the London Celtic Punks annual Best Of list. Has it really been a year since The Peelers waltzed (or should that be jigged) off with album of the year? It’s been possibly the best year for Celtic-Punk since we started doing this site and this was easily the closest it has ever been in that time. Pretty much all the big hitters, with one or two one notable exception (The Tossers where were you!), released records and on top of that a bunch of debut albums that were top class too.

so without further ado…

CLICK ON THE GREEN LINK TO BE FORWARDED TO REVIEW

2022’s #1 was the amazing new album from THE MAHONES. That they are as prolific as they are and yet can still put out quality like this 30 + years on is incredible. Well done Finny & co. FLOGGING MOLLY won the battle of the big Celtic-Punk 2 with the DROPKICKS and were also the best gig of the year for me personally (August in Dublin with Ferocious Dog). THE LUCKY TROLLS followed on from their Best EP award from 2019 with the highest place for any ‘outsider’ this year while Scandinavian stalwarts SIR REG gave us possibly their best album yet. REINA ROJA from Spain were another highly placed new band and their were several others among the Top 30. Their were also a handful of albums that didn’t qualify for the chart but were worth noting including a couple of greatest hits albums THE REAL McKENZIES Float Me Boat and UNCLE BARD AND THE DIRTY BASTARDS The Story So Far that were both superb introductions to the bands, the second volume of the Black 47 covers compilation AFTER HOURS VOL. 2 and finally the HEADSTICKS 10th anniversary album of the best songs of their career to date re-recorded.

1. THE MAHONES – Jameson Street

2. FLOGGING MOLLY – Anthem

3. DROPKICK MURPHYS – This Machine Still Kills Fascists

4. THE LUCKY TROLLS – Raised Fist And Rebel Songs

5. SIR REG – Kings Of Sweet Feck All

6. REINA ROJA – Hooligan Folk

7. FINNEGAN’S HELL – One Finger Salute

8. REAL McKENZIES – Songs Of The Highlands, Songs Of The Sea

9. HOIST THE COLOURS – When Daylight Breaks

10. SHANGHAI TREASON – Shanghai Treason

11. PADDY’S PUNK – With Full Horse

12. THE TAN AND SOBER GENTLEMEN – Regressive Folk Music

13. ZECKYBOYS – Dirty Brands

14. THE MOORINGS – March On

15. THE MULLINS – Gold In Our Hands

16. PADDY AND THE RATS – From Wasteland To Wonderland

17. SYRSentinel 

18. MAN THE LIFEBOATS – Soul Of Albion

19. THE GROGGY DOGS – Still Groggin’

20. WHISKEY’S WAKE – Wake Up Whiskey

21. JAMIE CLARKE’S PERFECT – Monkey See Monkey Do

22. O’HAMSTERS – From Green Hills To Raging Sea

23. SLAINTE – Up Down 95

24. THE ENDINGS – Completely Pickled

25. THE CUNDEEZ – Geez It

26. THE ROYAL SPUDS – Roots Of Life

27. THE DREADNOUGHTS – Roll And Go

28. THE SCARLET – Freedom Call 

29. TEMPLARS OF DOOM – Rising Of The Doom!

30. DRUNKEN FIGHTERS – Someday

Bubbling over: THEIGNS AND THRALLS – Theigns And Thralls 

As funny as it may seem the Best Debut Album award for 2022 was decided way back in January last year when the long awaited self titled debut album from Yorkshire banjo Punks SHANGHAI TREASON arrived in the post. Eleven original songs of high tempo energetic Celtic-Punk with some of the best banjo we heard all year long! On top of that later in the year they released a 3-track EP of songs that didn’t make the album that was also superb!  That’s not to say it was a easy choice as by the end of the year REINA ROJA, THE LUCKY TROLLS and ZECKYBOYS all put out albums that challenged the Treason and in any other year could easily have won the award themselves.

A well deserved top two for THE RUMJACKS and their new singer Mikee. The split EP with FLATFOOT 56 in particular was absolutely flawless! Their were fantastic debut releases from THE DEAD IRISH, THE GALLOWGATE MURDERS and THE RAMSTAMPITS out of the Celtic nations of Ireland and Scotland that completely blew us away and were eagerly anticipated. A word here for BOG IRON from California who I found completely by accident and been playing ever since.

1. THE RUMJACKS / FLATFOOT 56 Split EP

2. THE RUMJACKS – Brass For Gold

3. THE DEAD IRISH – Four Corners Of Hell

4. THE GALLOWGATE MURDERS – ‘ Dead, Gone And Living On’

5. BRICK TOP BLAGGERS – Obey The Tyrant

6. BOG IRON – Star Of The County Down

7. DISTILLERY RATS – We Are Rats

8.  THE KILLIGANS – Dread Naught

9. KRAKIN’ KELLYS – Old Ways New Days

10. THE RAMSTAMPITS – Light The Beacon

Bubbling Under: THE CLOVERHEARTS – Still Pissed / JAMESTOWN BROTHERS – Just Is

In what is usually the hardest category to choose from we actually had a very easy choice this year with the new album from Boston singer-songwriter BRYAN McPHERSON never off our play list all year long. The great news is that Bryan is heading to these shores in the Summer and we are very happy to be helping out. Dundalk’s THE MARY WALLOPERS were busy all year round and ended 2022 with a sell out London show and a debut album in December. The debut album from THE WINTER CODES saw a welcome return to the wider music scene for Barney the original vocalist for Blood Or Whiskey. Some may be surprised to find the first solo album from MARCUS MUMFORD listed but it really was a great album both musically but especially lyrically. 

1. BRYAN McPHERSON – How To Draw Everything

2. THE MARY WALLOPERS – The Mary Wallopers

3. OYSTERBAND – Read The Sky

4. IAN PROWSE – One Hand On The Starry Plough

5. PRONGHORN – Welcome To Pronghorn Country

6. BODH’AKTAN – Valcourt Sessions

7. BURBRIDGE AND BOOTH – Icons

8. THE WINTER CODES – Set The Darkness Reeling

9. THE ALT – Day Is Come

10. MARCUS MUMFORD – (self-titled)

A new section this year and the first winner is THE OUTCAST CREW out of Laois in the Irish midlands. A new single and video directed, filmed and edited by Thomas Moyles that came out at the end of the Summer. Laois is famous for an abbey, some gardens, a castle and a couple of lakes and now a kickarse class Celtic-Celtic-Punk. They won the 2020 Celtic Punk debut album of the year and it’s about time we heard some more guys!

The competition for best Celtic-Punk video of the year was incredible so next year (which will be our 10th anniversary) we will make a bit more effort and maybe even include you in the decision!!

There were several people involved in the collation of these results and so it is that some of those people may not have heard every album listed or released through the year. If you’re album is not listed maybe you didn’t send it us or not all the folks here heard it so couldn’t give a opinion so really don’t feel too put out. We’re not perfect but we do try our best.

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-ran’s 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  * 2021 *

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.

https://the30492shop.fwscart.com/

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 fifth year it’s been running with Krakin’ Kellys, Mickey Rickshaw, The Go-Set and Ferocious Dog our previously champions! Last year we had well over 1500 votes (the most ever!) so remember the auld Irish adage ‘Vote Early – Vote Often’. There is only room on the form to list the Top Ten albums but there is an option for YOU to write in your favourite release (album or EP) of the year.

Poll will run until midnight on Tuesday 31st January 2023. You can vote twice. If the release you want to vote for is not listed then you can write it in.

Keep up to date with London Celtic Punks web-zine for all the latest news, record reviews, features and plenty more. Find all our social media here

https://linktr.ee/londoncelticpunks

to subscribe to the web-zine email londoncelticpunk@hotmail.co.uk

The poll will close at midnight on Tuesday 31st January 2023 with the result to be announced soon afterwards.

Dedicated to our good friend Scott Chrystal

Slainte, The London Celtic Punks Bhoys – January 2023

ALBUM REVIEW: THE LUCKY TROLLS – ‘Raised Fist And Rebel Songs’ (2022)

I love a band that says what they are. None of that Folk-Punk or Folk-Rock messing about for Belgium’s The Lucky Trolls. It says right across their t-shirts  and hearts “Irish Punk From Liège”.

It finally seems that things are returning back to normal thank Heavens! I spoke just the other day how great it was to know that bands like The Scarlet had survived the pandemic and were releasing their first material since before the nightmare began. The very same can be said of The Lucky Trolls who shot to fame back in March, 2019 with the debut release of a self titled 4 track EP capturing the #1 spot as that years London Celtic Punks Best Celtic-Punk EP. Twelve fantastic minutes where their energy and passion comes across in every single song of fast Celtic-Punk with often dual vocals from Nicolas and fiddle player Anne-Sophie.

The Lucky Trolls left to right: Fabrice Van Bever – Bass / Vocals * Anne Sophie Sauvage – Violin / Vocals * Gilles Bruneau – Drums * Romain André – Guitar / Vocals * Nicolas Fréson – Guitar / Vocals *

The band hail from Liège in Walloonia which is the French speaking part of Belgium. Once a centre for working class industry, especially steel making, it has in recent years become important for education with tens of thousands attending universities in the city. Also world famous for it’s football team Standard Liège who in common with many teams from similar industrial areas had gone into decline but are happily showing signs of a return to their former glories. The five members of The Lucky Trolls have all played previously in well respected Belgian alternative and Punk-Rock bands – Radio 911, Chump, We Are Minutes and Young Enough. Pre Covid they had racked up 50+ shows within two years and had opened shows for everyone from fellow renowned Celtic-Punkers The Real McKenzies to Folk-Rock artists like Jethro Tull.

The album begins with the great ‘City Of Iron’. A track we previewed on it’s release so impressed were we. The song tells of corruption in the town of Seraing where several members of the band live. It is located in the province of Liège where the accompanying video was also shot. Seraing is called ‘the city of iron and coal’ and their are many such places around the world where local politicians have feathered their nests at the expense of the people. The Lucky Trolls challenge Seraing’s administration “Gimme some reasons to stay in this town”. They follow this with ‘To All Broken Souls’ and it has a sound similar to Black Water County, who had ‘punked’ it up when I saw them live recently. Drummer Gilles says of the album

“It’s not heavy metal, nor punk rock that tears. It’s scales of Irish chords, melodies that you could hear in an Irish pub, on which we add more traditional instruments and not only big punk guitars.”

The underlying Celtic melodies are there and even though the music can be hard and certainly fast at times I can’t help but agree with Gilles that is does have an accessibility to it that would, I’m sure, please anyone with decent musical taste and get them up on the feet. ‘Second Wind’ is one such song that slows down again and again for some Celtic interludes before bursting into life again. I love the chugging guitars throughout and the use of fiddle as on ‘Better Way’ is superb.

On ‘Faded Sheets’ they are joined by Titou MacFire of the great French band CelKilt, who they are playing with soon in their home town, on vocals for a song that finds itself struggling to contain itself. The rapid drumming adds to its fast and furious feel even getting faster towards the ending! Most of the songs here are originals with the first cover being of the auld Irish rebel song ‘The Foggy Dew’. The song begins in traditional ballad style before springing into action a third of the way in. A really great version sung beautifully by Anne-Sophie. I hear this song a lot as it has become very much a Celtic-Punk standard but this is a version I really, really loved. Parts of the album are influenced by ‘Pop-Punk’ as you can hear sometimes the influence of Yank bands like NOFX as on ‘Streets’ but it is by no means over powering. This leads us to the second and final cover and another popular song in the scene. A shame they couldn’t have found some less well known covers but I’m guessing these have been included as they are popular played live so we can forgive them. Theirs enough cheesy and cringey versions of ‘Galway Girl’ out there but not here. Chugging guitars and loud fiddle steer it well clear of anything embarrassing. Almost at the end and can’t tell you much of the meaning of ‘The Flooded Roads Of Kent County’ but a cracking song never the less before the curtain comes down on the album with the trad Celtic-Punk sounding ‘Again’. A grand way to end things.

(The Lucky Trolls 2021 Saint Patrick’s live stream at the Cultural Centre of Beauraing in Belgium. The four songs includes three songs from Raised Fist And Rebel Songs – ‘Flooded Roads Of Kent County’, ‘Faded Sheets’ and ‘Streets’)

The album came out just a couple of weeks ago and already the band have had several shows to promote it’s release. It was recorded at Big Dog Recordings in Antwerp and produced by Tim Van Doorn. The Lucky Trolls style of Celtic-Punk is definitely in the Punk camp but their catchiness and fantastic tunes ensures that even though I find myself less and less enamoured by Punk music over time The Lucky Trolls debut album only add to my love of them.

(You can stream and / or download Raised Fist And Rebel Songs via the Bandcamp player below)

Download Raised Fist And Rebel Songs  Bandcamp  OtherSites

Contact The Lucky Trolls  Facebook  YouTube  Instagram  Spotify

ODDS’N’SODS. A CELTIC-PUNK ROUND UP JUNE 2022

Calling out around the world, Are you ready for a brand new beat? Summer’s here and the time is right, For dancing in the street… well maybe not!

Here’s another Odds’n’Sods. A whole load of Celtic-Punk entertainment from all the scene’s bands big and small, established or just starting out.

Irish music band from Ukraine! THE JOLLY’S performing Irish pub songs and traditional Celtic Folk in a modern setting. No one needs to know whats going on in their home country so do these guys a favour and send them some love and a like over on Facebook and YouTube. Their’s an recent interesting interview with Nick and Valerie Mazurenko from the band over at Irish Radio Canada worth checking out. Here’s a recent live stream they did just last week.

‘Learn To Play Celtic Punk (guitar) With Krakin’ Kellys !’ new video from Matthieu from one of the Celtic-Punk scenes best bands. Sadly for any English folk it’s in French but maybe you can get subtitles or something.  STOP PRESS- Now with English subtitles!!

After a quiet couple of years (wasn’t everywhere?) the Hungarian Celtic-Punk scene has sprung into life again and JOLLY JACKERS have just released a new track and video.

Fans, like me!, of South Yorkshire based THE SILK ROAD were upset to hear that the lads are no more… but don’t despair Tich, Shaun and Neil have stuck together and formed a new band – ESTEN. The rhythm section remains the same and they are currently working on a new set of original songs including a few old Celtic-Punk favourites. You can send them over a ‘like’ on Facebook.

CHRIS GARD has a new video out. Didn’t dig up any information on him but it’s a really good tune and I was sure you folks would love it as well.

Brand new videos are flying out from THE RUMJACKS stable all the bloody time. Here’s the latest one with a track taken from the band’s recent split EP with Flatfoot 56.

Made In Dundee THE CUNDEEZ have a new album, Geez It, out soon scheduled for release in August and it features great track ‘On The Ran Dan’. Doesn’t seem like five minutes since their last knockout album so the bar is set high guys!

Belgian band THE LUCKY TROLLS have a new album out and it features this great version of the classic Irish Folk song ‘The Foggy Dew’. We’ll be reviewing this belter of an album in the next few days so don’t miss that!

Canadians THE DREADNOUGHTS just put out ‘Problem’ taken from their forthcoming new album Roll And Go coming June 24th! We will have the low down on it but if you can’t wait then get it on pre-release from Stomp Records.

More from one of the best and definitely one of my own personal favourite Celtic-Punk bands the KRAKIN’ KELLYS who put out a great live video, recorded on St. Patrick’s Day, for a new song ‘1985’. These guys vids are always entertaining!

Another personal favourite and occupying a completely different wing of Celtic-Punk are the Italian band BARDS FROM YESTERDAY. This is Irish trad music but with that Punk Rock feel to it. If only more Irish bands played trad like this!

London Celtic Punks fell for New Jersey bhoy SEAN TOBIN in a big way last year and great to hear he’s a new album out on June 10th. He’s a new 3-track single out called ‘Memorial Hall’. Have a listen over on Spotify and here’s a wee video he did for Kickstarter featuring Sean talking about how he got started and with some new and old tracks.

We missed this on May Day so if i remember we’ll give this another plug next year. FORFOCSEIC seem to be a one man project by Thom Dunn in good auld Boston, Mass. A bunch of trad Irish rebel songs given the ‘Boston. Mass.’ treatment including a couple of covers of the Murphys! Support new bands and new music folks!!

CRASH NOMADA (Sweden) – En Rispa I Evigheten

THE LUCKY TROLLS (Belguim) – Raised Fist And Rebel Songs (review on its way!)

HEATHEN APOSTLES (USA) – Bloodgrass Vol 3 & 4 (review coming…)

THE WATERBOYS (England) – All Souls Hill

TROLLFEST (Norway) – Flamingo Overlord

MUTABOR (Germany) – Rebel

BLACK TARTAN CLAN (Belguim / Spain) – Demo Sessions

Remember we can’t review it if we don’t hear it

There’s literally a bit of everything in the new single from Germany’s MUTABOR. Punk, Folk, Ska, Reggae, Grunge etc., etc., The track is taken off their new album Rebel and ‘dummheit’ is German for stupidity my wife tells me.

Blast from The Past is dedicated to bands, many of whom are no more, who put out great music but were never featured on these pages at the time. Usually they come with a free download link. From epic road songs to tear-stained tales of heartache, from Texas-style rockers to dark-humoured murder ballads, THE SWEARENGENS from Seattle, Washington, cover a lot of musical and emotional territory in their twisted attempt at reviving the glory days alt-country of Whiskeytown, The Jayhawks, Dwight Yoakam, Uncle Tupelo, and Steve Earle. You can download the album here on We Transfer for free or via the Bandcamp app for a small fee.

Indonesian Celtic-Punk band SKAROCKOI have a new single out this month. Wish some of these guys would include some links for the band or download…

New (to us anyway) raucous and rowdy Celtic-Punk from Italy that looks like a bloody fantastic time was had by all. Keep an eye out for ZECKYBOYS as they will be featured very soon!

Founded back in 1998 in Kansas THE ELDERS recently retired than just as quickly changed their minds again and this month played to a sold-out show on their ‘Well Alright Then’ reunion tour.

We are pleased to announce the first London Celtic Punks gig in a couple of years with Italian band DIRTY ARTICHOKES – the tidiest Celtic-Punk band in the Celtic-Punk scene – returning to town at the beginning of August and will be playing with THE LAGAN and ANTO MORRA, two artists popular on the London Irish music scene that sadly haven’t been able to play much of late. The gig will be at the Bird’s Nest in Deptford and all details are on the Facebook event. We have almost finalised plans to bring Florida’s #1 Irish band CLOVER’S REVENGE over to London in the Summer. Keep an eye out for details of that when they emerge.

ULTRABOMB staring Greg Norton of Hüsker Dü, Finny McConnell of The Mahones and Jamie Oliver of the U.K. Subs play the 229 in the west end of London on July 1st performing a mix of Husker Du, UK Subs, The Mahones and brand new material from their forthcoming album! News just in that our very own FEROCIOUS DOG will be supporting FLOGGING MOLLY on all their UK tour gigs during August. Now that’s 2 reasons to make sure you get a ticket!

If you like what we do then you can support us by checking out our online store. The Harp’n’Bones design is back in all sizes and on black or white shirts. Also we have new polo shirts, in all sizes, and some nifty woolly hats as well as the Green’n’White ‘Skully Cap’ ringer shirts. Click the link below for the full range of all our other tatt. Shirts, badges, stickers, flags, CD’s and fridge magnets all the discerning Celtic-Punk fan could ever need! Help keep Punk Celtic!  https://the30492shop.fwscart.com/

Facebook is shit. Proper shit. That the world’s most ‘popular’ social media site has only 2/5 in the play app store says it all! It’s stranglehold on all forms of expression is not good and it’s great to see people leaving in droves. Don’t despair though if you are one of them as you can keep up with London Celtic Punks posts via our wee group on the phone app Telegram. Similar in style (but better and easier to use) to What’s App but completely free from outside interference. Join us on Telegram, don’t miss a single post and even receive the odd exclusive and special offer! https://t.me/londoncelticpunks/  

Even though we hate it Facebook does supply the (very) occasional ray of sunshine so a shout out to some good friends of ours over on Facebook. The Dropkick Murphys- Fan Page and the Celtic Punk, Folk And Rock Fans are two of the best music forums on FB let alone Celtic-Punk. Ran By Fans For Fans just like you and me. Like and join in the fun!

A reminder too that we need your news so anything you would like to share with the rest of the Celtic-Punk scene send it onto us.

If you are new to the London Celtic Punks blog it is easy to subscribe / follow and never miss a post. Bands, promoters, record labels, venues send in any news to londoncelticpunks@hotmail.co.uk or via the Contact Us page.

LONDON CELTIC PUNKS PRESENTS THE BEST OF 2019!

Well here we go again. It only seems like five minutes since I was compiling all the votes into last years Best Of that saw The Rumjacks romping home with Album Of The Year. This year has been a bit quieter on the Celtic-Punk front but as last year was so busy that is perhaps not surprising. That’s not to say their weren’t some fantastic releases as their were plenty and it was still really difficult to come up with the various lists below. Not so many big bands this year so it was left to the lesser known bands to shine but remember this is only our opinion and these releases are only the tip of the iceberg of what came out last year. Feel free to comment, slag off or dissect our lists. As a bonus we are adding the Readers Poll again this year so you can even vote on your favourite release of 2019 yourself. If it’s not listed then simply add your choice.

We don’t pretend to be the final word as that my friends is for you…

(click on the green link to go where you will find more information on the release)

1. THE WALKER ROADERS – Self Titled

2. MICKEY RICKSHAW – Home In Song

3. FEROCIOUS DOG – Fake News And Propaganda

4. GREENLAND WHALEFISHERS – Based On A True Story

5. BARLEYJUICE – The Old Speakeasy

6. THE NARROWBACKS – By Hook Or By Crook

7. McDERMOTTS TWO HOURS – Besieged

8. PIPES AND PINTS – The Second Chapter

9. THE RUMJACKS – Live In Athens

10. SELFISH MURPHY – After Crying

11. TORTILLA FLAT – Live At The Old Capitol

12. FIDDLERS GREEN – Heyday

13. THE RUMJACKS – Live In London Acoustic Sessions

14. THE WHIPJACKS – This Wicked World

15. 13 KRAUSS – Redención

16. ALTERNATIVE ULSTER – Craic Agus Ceol

17. AIRES BASTARDOS – Self Titled

18. THE TEMPLARS OF DOOM – Hovels Of The Holy

19. THE FIGHTING JAMESONS – A Moment In California

20. ANGRY McFINN AND THE OLD YANK – Songs of Whiskey, Women & War

21. THE SHILLELAGHS – Ripples In The Rye

22. HELLRAISERS AND BEERDRINKERS – Pub Crawl

23. BODH’AKTAN – De Temps Et De Vents

24. HEATHEN APOSTLES – Dust To Dust

25. SONS OF CLOGGER – Return To The Stones’

26. THE CHERRY COKE$ – Old Fox

27. THE FILTHY SPECTACULA – The Howl Of The Underclasses

28. THE POTATO PIRATES – Hymns For The Wayward

29. TC COSTELLO– Horizon Songs

30. THE TENBAGS – ‘Bags o’ Craic’

How to compete with last year? Every single top band in the genre released an album so things were always going to be a bit quieter for 2019. Top spot this year unsurprisingly goes to The Walker Roaders Celtic-Punk super group! With Pogues, Mollys and Dropkicks making up the team how could they possibly go wrong! Everyone’s ‘next big thing’ Mickey Rickshaw came in a well deserved second and Ferocious Dog took third after releasing their best album, for me, since From Without. Greenland Whalefishers celebrated 25 years on the road with their best album for quite a while and what Best Of would be right without some bloody brilliant Irish-American bands challenging at the top too. Pipes And Pints new album with a new singer received acclaim from across the Punk media and The Rumjacks couldn’t follow up last years unanimous victory despite having two album releases (both sort of live) in the top thirteen. Fiddlers Green continue to make consistently great albums and go into 2020 celebrating thirty years together! Good to see homegrown bands The Whipjacks, The Tenbags, The Filthy Spectacula and Sons Of Clogger making it too. The top thirty was made up of thirteen countries from USA, England, Norway, Czech Republic, Australia, Switzerland, Germany, Argentina, Japan, Quebec, Hungary, Spain and Japan.

1. THE LUCKY TROLLS – Self Titled

2. DRUNKEN DOLLY – The Party

3. LORETTA PROBLEM – The Waltz Of My Drunken Dream

4. THE CLOVERHEARTS – Sick

5. KRAKIN’ KELLYS – Irish Tribute

6. THE PLACKS – Rebellious Sons

7. GYPSY VANNER – Five Distilled Celtic Punks

8. THE RUMPLED – Grace O’ Malley

9. FOX’N’FIRKIN – Hey Ho! We’re Fox n Firkin

10. SHANGHAI TREASON – Devil’s Basement

The Lucky Trolls took #1 spot with their brilliant self-titled EP following on from fellow countrymen the Krakin’ Kellys multi award winning 2018. Trust me it would have taken an exceptionally good release to keep The Party by Drunken Dolly off the top spot but that is what happened. Dolly’s excursions over to these shores this year j=has seen them grown in stature and you can’t go to a Ferocious Dog gig without spotting at least a dozen of their shirts. Loretta Problem wowed us with their single ‘Waltz Of My Drunken Dream’ which took us right back back to The Pogues glory days and what about that accompanying video too!! If we had a award for best video then that would have walked it. The Kellys had a quiet year with comparison to ’18 but still managed a respectable #5 and great debut releases from The Placks our sole representative from a Celtic nation (big things are going to happen to this band in 2020 mark my words), Italian/Aussies The Cloverhearts and, from just down the road from my Mammy, Shanghai Treason from Sheffield who only put out one song… but what a song! Eight countries represented from Belgium, Netherlands, Finland, Italy, Scotland, Argentina, Australia and Yorkshire!

AIRES BASTARDOS– ‘Self-Titled’

Argentina is becoming a bit of a hot-spot for Celtic-Punk with not only some well established bands but also some new ones starting up too and with this release Aires Bastardos announced their arrival on the international scene too. Not afraid to dive straight into a folk number after a Cock Sparrer cover they veer from standard Celtic-Punk to Folk and back to fast as hell Punk but in that really accessible way that only Celtic-Punk (and maybe Ska-Punk) bands can do.

1. THE DREADNOUGHTS – Into The North

2. CROCK OF BONES – Celtic Crossbones

3. 6’10 – Where We Are

4. BRYAN McPHERSON – Kings Corner

5. CALLUM HOUSTON – Gravities

6. PYROLYSIS – Daylight Is Fading

7. SEAMUS EGAN – Early Bright

8. LE VENT DU NORD – Territoires

9. DONNY ZUZULA – Chemicals

10. DERVISH – Great Irish Songbook

The Dreadnoughts don’t really think of themselves as Celtic-Punk so I reckon they’d be happier to win this than Celtic-Punk Album Of The Year. A superb collection of sea shanties that is a pleasure to listen to that was always going to be #1. Crock Of Bones representing the London Irish in 2nd with an album of trad folk with punk rock attitude and it’s especially good to hear some originals done in the style of the ‘auld ways’. 6’10 challenged for the top spot as they always do with everything they release and Bryan MacPherson and Callum Houston both produced great releases of singer-songwriter acoustic folk with Irish roots.

Sadly the Celtic-Punk world has shrunk a little regarding Web-Sites. Winners of the last two years the Mersey Celt Punks have been slacking (sort it out lads!) and enjoying their gigs too much to tell us while Shite’n’Onions have been too busy transferring everything onto a different platform and preparing for a bit of a re-launch I expect. Sadly celtic-rock.de have shut up shop after twelve years so it just makes it all the more clear how much we all miss Waldo and his fantastic Celtic-Folk-Punk And More site. As regular as clockwork and all the news that was ever fit (or not!) to print. Closing down the site in its 10th year in March must have been a tough decision to make and so this year we award best Website to Waldo and let it be known that no Celtic-Punk site will ever come close to replacing you. We would certainly not exist without his kind help and inspiration. All the best comrade enjoy your retirement! One welcome addition is Michu and his Celtic-Punk Encyclopedia site from Poland. Worth checking out especially if you are in a band.

We are not alone in doing these Best Of 2019 lists in fact all the major players in celtic-punk do them so click below to check out what they thought.

THE CELTIC PUNKCAST

FOLK’N’ROCK

MERSEY CELT PUNKS

So there you go. Remember we don’t pretend to be the final word on things in fact if you check the other Celtic-Punk media I’m sure we’ve all come up with relatively different lists. Our Best Of’s are cajoled and bullied out of the admins from the London Celtic Punks Facebook page. The assorted scraps of paper and beer mats were then tallied up please remember not all of us heard the same albums so like all the various Best Of’s ours is also subjective.

This is our 8th year of making these Best Of lists so if you would like to check out out who was where in our previous ones then just click on the link below the relevant year.

Last year we introduced a new feature THE READERS PICK. We had no idea if it would work or not but it was a raging success so we going to do it all again this year. With well over 500 votes cast you lot chose the debut album from the Krakin’ Kellys as a worthy winner. Only the Top Ten albums are listed but there is an option to write in your favourite release or just to send us love… or abuse!

You are allowed to vote twice but not for the same artist.

The Poll will close at midnight on Friday 31st January with the result announced soon after.

remember any views, comments or abuse or slander we would love to hear it…

 Sláinte, The London Celtic Punks Crew- January, 2020

EP REVIEW: THE LUCKY TROLLS- ‘The Lucky Trolls’ (2019)

There’s a new Belgian Celtic-Punk band in town! The Lucky Trolls are six friends who play fast Irish folk and punk and they have just released their debut EP.
There’s nothing I like better than a band who announces exactly what they are to the world. Today’s band The Lucky Trolls do just that with the strap line ‘Irish Punk From Liège’ emblazoned across the bottom of their logo, as drawn by the prolific Hanan 1204 of West Java, Indonesia who supplies most of the Indonesian Celtic-Punk scenes bands with logos! (it is also available as a t-shirt and my cheque is already in the post!), it comes as no surprise to find that they play fast energetic punk rock with multiple Celtic influences and some of the best vocals I have heard in quite the while.
They celebrate five years together this year having formed in 2014 but it has taken several band members comings and goings for them to release this their debut EP and on this evidence we are eagerly await more to come. The band hail from Liège in the Walloonia (French speaking) area of Belgium . The area was in the past a working class city being famous for its steel making but recent changes have seen it become more important in education with tens of thousands attending universities in the city. The city is also famous for it’s football team Standard Liège who seemingly in common with many teams from industrial working class areas went into a bit of a slump but happily are again showing signs of a return to their former glories.
The EP begins with ‘Dirty Old Jack’ and straight from the off you know where this band are coming from. It’s fast paced punk music but with folk instruments but they have not just been slapped willy-nilly on top of punk music, they are an integral part of The Lucky Trolls sound and they ROCK! Comparisons to fellow Belgian band The Krakin’ Kellys are inevitable and to be honest their are similarities between the two but seeing as the Kellys have literally taken the Celtic-Punk world by storm in their short time together their are certainly worse bands to be compared to. Beginning with the sound of accordion before the band join in and its fast and catchy and has an air of Mick O’Toole to it as well thanks to some very manic mandolin plucking. Later in the song fiddle and bagpipes pop up and those vocal harmonies… well where to start. I’ve always been a lover of gang and dual vocals and I think it works especially well in Celtic-Punk and here The Lucky Trolls have nailed it! Can’t tell you who is singing what but both voices suit each other perfectly as they belt the tracks out accompanied by the rest of the gang in the chorus. A cracking opening track that I fell in love with instantly. They keep the energy up with ‘Rocking On The Show’ and with the introduction of tin-whistle they keep up the Celtic connection too. Another rockin’ tune with a great chorus and only two songs in and I’m pretty certain we already have a contender for EP of the year here! That thought doesn’t ease up when third song ‘Rise Yourself’ lands in my ears. Another beauty. Bit slower this time but still on the heavy side with Nathan’s great raspy vocal style and the glorious sound of bagpipes! A chorus of ‘Oi Oi’s only endears them to me more and leads us nicely into the final track of the EP, the classic folk tune ‘Dirty Old Town’. We have over the years written plenty on the interesting origins and various covers of this song and its popularity amongst Celtic-Punk bands is second to none. So rather than rake over the past you can type Dirty Old Town in the search bar on the left and read our thoughts yourselves. Anyway for such a well known song all you really want to know is whether it’s any good or not! If you been concentrating then you will know the answer. Yes it is. Fast paced and clearly sung with Nathan accompanied with female vocals from fiddle player Anne-Sophie. Whether or not Ewan MacColl is rotating in his grave is another matter but I’d hope he’d appreciate it that a band in 2019 from Belguim is still paying homage to him via this great song. 
Sadly only four tracks but what a fantastic twelve minutes that I cannot recommend enough. It was recorded, mixed and mastered by Clinchon and Pompiflet who have done an brilliant job. Bands like The Lucky Trolls may be best heard live but on this EP they have successfully transferred that sound and their energy and passion comes across in every song. I dare say you would not be able to stay still watching them play and that is as big a compliment you can give in music.

(You can sample the whole of The Lucky Trolls EP below on the Bandcamp player)

Buy EP FromTheBand  Contact The Lucky Trolls  Facebook  Bandcamp  YouTube

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