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The Real McKenzies - Oot & Aboot (Cover Artwork)

The Real McKenzies

The Real McKenzies: Oot & AbootOot & Aboot (2003)
Honest Don's

Reviewer Rating: 4
User Rating:


Contributed by: jonathanJonathan
(others by this writer | submit your own)

It could be that finals are finally done. It could be the blue summer skies and 70-something weather of Los Angeles today. But I am enjoying the new Real McKenzies album Oot & Aboot for what it is. It's not going to change your life, but you'll probably have some fun. You can practically smell.


It could be that finals are finally done. It could be the blue summer skies and 70-something weather of Los Angeles today. But I am enjoying the new Real McKenzies album Oot & Aboot for what it is. It's not going to change your life, but you'll probably have some fun.

You can practically smell the whisky on this disc. I think the next Mckenzies album should have a scratch and sniff surface on the booklet, so no matter where you are or what the time, you can experience, in part, this band appropriately. I mean, you can't really throw back a bottle of ye ol' Scottish Chivas while driving down the freeway--well, those of us who aren't a part of the Mckenzie clan, anyway.

Heavy alcohol aside (if that's possible), this album is entertaining. The Mckenzies have been able to create something rather distinct, complete with Scottish bagpipes and kilts to boot. I'm not a Dropkick Murphy's fan. Say what will about the Irish influence there--besides that little clover on their band logo, it's mostly non-existent. Though the Real Mckenzies are ironically from Vancouver, Scotland (and yes, alcohol) remains a pervasive presence. I mean how many other punk bands have a bagpipe player who rocks it on stage with the standard lineup of guitars and drums? And Matt MacNasty plays the bagpipes well.

It's rather difficult to review the content of the album when a good number of the songs are something along the lines of, "Dance Around the Whisky," "Drink the Way I Do," etc. But you'll also hear self-reflexive, historical commentary on the punk scene in "Droppin' like Flies." The song is a nod the forefathers of punk like, The Damned, The Sex Pistols and The Ramones, and the overall rise of the scene. Yeah, it's been done before, but it's still refreshing considering that most of these mainstream acts that are negating "punk" to celebrity prankster shows and fashion and pop music probably would say, "Wait, what? Sex Pistols? I've heard of them, I think. That's like an old band right?" Punk is dying, sabotaged by the corporate control it once stood proudly against. The Real Mckenzies aren't really a combatant to that tragedy, but they are able to send it all up in an amusing package that benefits by not taking itself too seriously.

And while this band is more of a hybridized punked-up Celtic bar band and certainly aren't "punk" with the vigor of The Sex Pistols that they proudly give a shout-out to, Paul Mckenzie sounds vaguely like a Scottish Greg Graffin, and any Graffin influence scores points in my book. Listen for hints of Bad Religion on the chorus of "Croos the Ocean" and on "Lest We Forget."

Oot & Aboot kind of all comes together on "Heather's Bells" and on "The Night the Lights Went Out In Scotland." Here, the Scottish and punk influence seem naturally linked. It seems like the Real Mckenzies sound like they should sound on these two, with floating bagpipe melodies underneath the drums and guitars and Graffin-like, yet Celtic influenced, baritone vocal harmony of Paul Mckenzie. "Tailor Made" finishes this album off, a complete bagpipe anthem with pounding, pulsating traditional Scottish percussion. No, it's not the Braveheart soundtrack, it's just the Mckenzie clan stompin' off into the highlands. It sounds great. Bring on the Chivas, bring on the haggis, and bring on a fun summer album.

 

 
People who liked this also liked:
Dead to Me - Cuban BallerinaNOFX - The DeclineSwingin' Utters - A Juvenile Product of the Working ClassBouncing Souls - The Gold RecordAgainst Me! - As The Eternal CowboyThe Lawrence Arms - Oh! Calcutta!Dropkick Murphys - The Warrior's CodeDropkick Murphys - The Gang's All HereDropkick Murphys - Do Or DieNOFX - Punk In Drublic

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Fine Print: The following comments are owned by whoever posted them. We are not respon sible for them in any way. Seriously.
Anonymous (February 28, 2004)

I thought the album was bloody brilliant. And yes, they are awesome in concert.

Anonymous (February 28, 2004)

I thought the album was bloody brilliant. And yes, they are awesome in concert.

Anonymous (December 22, 2003)

The Murphys never claimed to be "Irish" or play 'Irish Music" . Irish American is the Murphy way, and its the way it should be . More punk than trad. You should also listen to DKM 's new record "Blackout". Its bursting with mandolins ,bagpipes and Irish AMERICAN suss.

This new Mckenzies record kicks ass, get it

Analog_Boy (November 16, 2003)

Let me just tell you... You spoke of the day and how nice it was, how you were enjoying the alblum. I just recently picked up Oot & Aboot and this is one of the best fucking alblums i've heard in a long while. These guys are far better than I had ever thought they would be. Its raining outside, and it was a bitter, shitty day. This music has really picked me up. Fucking awsome. I say GET IT it to anyone who has any interest in music what so ever.

1000_good_intentions (June 1, 2003)

"but if your obsessed with the irish punk genre and looking for a good song to add to a mix, what the hell"

Scottish people and Irish people are not flattered when you consider them as the same. There are many differences, and most of them are not subtle.

1000_good_intentions (June 1, 2003)

"but if your obsessed with the irish punk genre and looking for a good song to add to a mix, what the hell"

Scottish people and Irish people are not flattered when you consider them as the same. There are many differences, and most of them are not subtle.

1000_good_intentions (June 1, 2003)

Frasier or Just Shoot Me

Anonymous (May 28, 2003)

that anoying guy down there does have a point: RedLine does rock

Anonymous (May 28, 2003)

for your information, i have 14 BR cds (including Graffin's solo project) and 2 videos. I'm not just talking out of my ass. I know about Graffin's style. once again, stop trying to prove that you're punk rock elite.

ommaddon (May 27, 2003)

just because he sounds like Graffin, doesn't mean that it's Graffin influenced. what does BR have to do with this anyway. quit trying to show off your punk rock knowledge.

Wow, that's an ignorant and trite comment. If Paul sounds like Graffin, I make a deduction that his vocal patterns bear a Graffin influence. Especially since Greg has a long standing tradition of infusing American folk harmony and vocal patterns into punk music--similiar to how the Mckenzies lift the traditional Scottish folk sound.

There IS more to resembling Graffin than just the complex lyrical content--I was speaking purely of musicality--not social themes. If you're going to post something, at least make it somewhat insightful. There's no showing here--that's utterly ridiculous. I'm not making associations of Oot & Aboot to an obsucre reference--Greg Graffin and BR is about as broad as it comes. If you're never heard BR--do me, yourself, and everybody a favor and go buy No Control. Play it, put it on repeat, and don't stop listening to it until Graffin makes you understand everything works.

I made a simple comment that Paul Mckenzie does lift some Graffin vocal patterns, and for those who have never heard the Mckenzies, that--along with my other comments on the Scots and the alcohol--should give you a pretty general idea what to expect.

Quit inciting for no purpose.

- Jonathan

treetsux (May 27, 2003)

I think this is a great album....I dont see what you guys means about this being too mainstream.

Anonymous (May 27, 2003)

sorry...NOT REALIZE the unbeliveable etc. . and i meant "almost-mainstream punk"...i mean the sound could sure pass off

Anonymous (May 27, 2003)

because its real simple to ban an anonymous user.

this is your very basic fat wreck type of band. i mean, if your intoxicated enough to realize the unbelievable simplicity of the chord progressions and pissed drunk enough to just want to have a good time with simple, stereotypical snotty almost-mainstream lyrics ("Go on/Get lost/and join a punk rock band")...then its pretty good. nothing that's going to make anyone's top 10 list for the year, but if your obsessed with the irish punk genre and looking for a good song to add to a mix, what the hell, right

inagreendase

Anonymous (May 26, 2003)

please ban the person beneath me.

Anonymous (May 26, 2003)

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c-dubs fo life bitch!

Anonymous (May 26, 2003)

just because he sounds like Graffin, doesn't mean that it's Graffin influenced. what does BR have to do with this anyway. quit trying to show off your punk rock knowledge.

Anonymous (May 26, 2003)

"go watch punk'd, listen to good charlotte, and jerk yourself off."

ha. very original.

eyeball_kid (May 26, 2003)

"fat mike signed Propaghandi (the band he is most proud of having on his label) because they covered "surrender" flawlessly, executing the harmonies without error."

Hehe I hope that wasn't it. You could get Steve Vai and his band to do that.

Anonymous (May 25, 2003)

they kick some ass on this record,brilliant stuff

Anonymous (May 25, 2003)

okay, now i would rather have my testicles torn off on a chain link fence than ever listen to this shit, but goddamn, i have gotta say that this title is fucking mint. seriously. i'm glad this album exists if only for that one aspect, though they probably could have just made into a single and saved everyone some cash. also, they should definitely break up right now. fatty miz-ike should just be all like "good work on the title boys, now hit the showers", give em all a pat on their ass, and send em packin. yeah, that'd be sweet.

Anonymous (May 25, 2003)

fat mike signed Propaghandi (the band he is most proud of having on his label) because they covered "surrender" flawlessly, executing the harmonies without error.

Anonymous (May 25, 2003)

i didn't read the review to hear about what some jackass thinks about the current punk scene. I don't give a fuck about that shit, it's such a tired topic. I read the review to see a review of the album, not punk in general.

this review does review the album. one comment on the punk scene doesn't mean the WHOLE fucking review is about that. go watch punk'd, listen to good charlotte, and jerk yourself off.

FortyMinutesWest (May 25, 2003)

Really? What kind of ball, one of the super bouncing ones or a tennis ball or what?

Anonymous (May 25, 2003)

the real mckenzies are really good live.
i don't really like them on record as much, but if you have the chance to see them, go do it...you'll have a ball.

StratManX (May 24, 2003)

I love it when people say emo pop punk...yet most of the "pop-punk" doesn't have the slightest semblance of emo. The mistake comes in that they should be lumped together in the shit category not "emo-pop-punk."

Anonymous (May 24, 2003)

this review sucked ass! i didn't read the review to hear about what some jackass thinks about the current punk scene. I don't give a fuck about that shit, it's such a tired topic. I read the review to see a review of the album, not punk in general.

and to the guy selling this cd, couldnt i just get it new for the same price at honest don's website. and, not that i'm interested in buying your used cd, but why do you want to sell it? does it suck? maybe you could do a real review of the album

irish_joo (May 24, 2003)

caroline in the city

Anonymous (May 24, 2003)

i wouldnt say that punk is dying, its just that there is alot of emo pop punk bands out there that are not concerned with diy,rebellion or any of the other classic punk beliefs. these bands will die out soon when people realize that there is more to sing about then high school girls. i myself cant wait for that to happen. once the trend of punk dies again the true real punk bands will remain and all these sum 41 or good charlotte or nfg type bands will be looked at as a laughing stock and as a cash cow. there is a lot of good, true punk out there, you just have to look.
to quote the dead kennedys:
"punks not dead,it just deserves to die when it becomes another stale cartoon."

Anonymous (May 24, 2003)

I will sell this CD for $10ppd! Leave an email if you want to buy it. I will contact you.

eyeball_kid (May 24, 2003)

Good review. That comma thing sounds like something Seinfeld might say I reckon.

maverick (May 24, 2003)

Cheers? Think more recent, like 1998-2000.

And no band does "Surrender" very well, I've heard a million cover it. They should just let Cheap Trick do it, since they're better than 99% of the bands who try to cover it.

-Scott

Anonymous (May 24, 2003)

so, im listening to a new less than jake song, ( the cheap trick cover) and i believe that Ann Beretta does it 10 times better. Any one agree with me?

Anonymous (May 24, 2003)

probably not a cheers reference, but that norm is just philisophical enough to make me guess it.
-duped

Anonymous (May 23, 2003)

i've been to vancouver, scotland-seasonably mild during the summers.

maverick (May 23, 2003)

"You pronounce the comma?"
"No, but you acknowledge it."

[name that obscure TV reference for 10 points]

-Scott

Anonymous (May 23, 2003)

Read again dumbass.

Though the Real Mckenzies are ironically from Vancouver, Scotland (and yes, alcohol) remains a pervasive presence.

Read as: "Even though the Real Mckenzies are ironically from Vancouver, *PAUSE* Scotland (and yes, alcohol) remains a pervasive presence."

Anonymous (May 23, 2003)

real mckenzies are from vancouver CANADA, not scotland

gutterhippo (May 23, 2003)

what's a better album, this or Loch'd & Loaded? I don't have either but i loved them live and i gotta get one of their cds. from the songs i've heard it sounds like oot and aboot was better produced, but the older album had more energy

Anonymous (May 23, 2003)

This band finally did it right...I knew they had this album in them, fucking great live performance.

ElVaquero (May 23, 2003)

awesome band live

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