What made an Italian band adopt a raucous Celtic punk sound shall remain a mystery, but whatever the reason, there’s an army of fans who’re glad they did. Since their formation in 2007, Uncle Bard & The Dirty Bastards have become leaders in their field, but the one thing missing from their discography was a live recording that captured the sheer lunacy of their live show. That anomaly has been rectified by These Are The Days, an album that’s bursting at the seams with 15 explosive cuts, making this an essential purchase for long-term fans and new converts alike.
Uncle Bard & The Dirty Bastards certainly know how to make a dramatic entrance and, after a spoken word intro, ‘Hey Man’ is like a tumble weed taking on new form, and becomes a monolith that fills the entire venue. However, it’s ‘Back On Your Feet’ where the band really hit their stride, and you can almost see the smiles and pint glasses held aloft as the guitars and mandolin combine in an irresistible jig. As with traditional Irish folk, there’s something very life-affirming about the sounds The Bastards produce; it resonates with the listener on a primordial level and demands that all present shake their tush (at least all of those with a pulse).
Recorded on 27th August 2022 at the Tribal Rock Festival, France, These Are The Days proves that music exists beyond borders; it’s something you feel rather than a tangible thing defined by ethnicity. As some of the best Americana is currently being produced in the UK, so the most vivacious Celtic punk is emanating from Italy. Uncle Bard & The Dirty Bastards pay homage to the original genre while putting their own spin on proceeding, as opposed to being a mere facsimile, and this is what makes the band so authentic. Vocalist Guido Domingo doesn’t sing with a fake accent, and those in the crowd respond in kind, and the waves of affection radiating between band and crowd are easily discernible on this collection.
If you are a fan of Flogging Molly and Dropkick Murphys, then you’ll find a spiritual home here, but The Bastards certainly have a crossover appeal and it’ll appeal equally to fans of punk, metal or, indeed, any type of rowdy music. If your only exposure to cuts such as ‘If Only He Applied Himself’ and ‘Gipsy Geezers’ was from the versions found on the studio albums then you might be surprised at the velocity which they attain in the live environment, or maybe not. It seems as if The Bastards and a rabid crowd were made for each other, and it gives songs like ‘The Flat Above My Pub’ extra verve and swagger.
Breathing new life into a familiar genre, Uncle Bard & The Dirty Bastards are a band best experienced in the flesh, but if you are yet to have that pleasure then These Are The Days, released on St. Patrick’s Day, is the next best thing.
- These Are The Days is released via Store For Music and is available now.
- Official Website
- Hey Man
- Back On Your Feet
- If Only He Applied Himself
- Plastic Paddy’s Day
- Gipsy Geezers
- Man Of The Storm
- Happily Misplaced In This World
- Anger (The Void That Stops The Wind)
- The Rambling Bhoys
- Up The Bastards!
- Get Some Rest
- The Flat Above My Pub
- Ring Of Fire
- Fields Of Athenry