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Flogging Molly - Float (Cover Artwork)

Flogging Molly

Flogging Molly: FloatFloat (2008)
Side One Dummy Records

Reviewer Rating: 3
User Rating:


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

One thing that Flogging Molly have over a large majority of Irish punk bands, and I'm sure this has been said many times before, is that lead man Dave King is actually Irish. Can you say that, Dropkick Muphys? Can you say that, Tossers? Even Shane McGowan (the Pogues' leading alcoholic) has a more t.
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One thing that Flogging Molly have over a large majority of Irish punk bands, and I'm sure this has been said many times before, is that lead man Dave King is actually Irish. Can you say that, Dropkick Muphys? Can you say that, Tossers? Even Shane McGowan (the Pogues' leading alcoholic) has a more tenuous link to Irishdom. And so with that in mind, it is easier to listen to Flogging Molly without annoyance at the cod-ness that may come with other bands.

It also helps that King has surrounded himself by very talented musicians and can write quite a good tune (Drunken Lullabies is a personal favourite Irish punk album of mine). And with the four years since the last studio album (the rather good Within a Mile Of Home in 2004), they've picked up a host of celebrity fans, name-checked by author Stephen King and actors Ewan McGregor, Sean Penn, Tim Robbins and other imaginary people.

So what does Float bring to the Flogging Molly boat, apart from celebrity fans and some more Irish punk? Innovative, interesting, intelligent ideas to take the sound further and forward? Perhaps some more metallic moments that harkens back to King's original band (Fastway, with "Fast" Eddie Clark from Motörhead)?

Well…no, not really. It was recorded in Ireland though, adding more legitimacy to their cause. But back in 2002, with Drunken Lullabies, the band hit quite the unstoppable stride for writing good song after good song and they didn't really bother to stop. It went all through Drunken Lullabies, into Within a Mile of Home and has gone all the way into Float, a million and a half album sales later.

There is a struggle with most bands that last more than three albums and who are not of a progressive nature: They fail to grow, change and be interesting. Certainly, Float is an album of consistently well-written, well-played, well-structured songs. It's easy to picture a crowd roused by "Requiem for a Dying Song," "Paddy's Lament," "You Won't Make a Fool Out of Me," "Us of Lesser Gods" and pretty much the rest of the album. But we got that on Drunken Lullabies -- why bother making the same album for the fourth time? Even the Dropkick Murphys have grown, albeit from a cod-Irish but pretty good hardcore oi! band to a cliché-ridden embarrassment.

This is a good, fine, fun album. King has a way with hooks and songs that are, in no uncertain terms, rabble rousing. These 11 tracks are a safe excursion into territory the band never leaves; they are a tight and skilled band who are playing well within their comfort zone. And that is the disappointment: the lack of surprises; the lack of challenge; the lack of progress. If folk music was never meant to change, Bob Dylan would've never picked up the electric guitar and the Pogues would play sober. I accuse Flogging Molly of sitting on their laurels and letting themselves down by making consistently good yet predictable albums.

 

 
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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.
savato (May 9, 2010)

Within A Mile of Home is the album recycles the same sound in my eyes, while Float had a more folky sound.

PMAtill_ImDOA (December 4, 2008)

the only bad thing about this record for me, was that it was 11 songs long while all their other cds were way longer..
for me this cd manages to blend the slight shifts in style the other albums present.
over all, wicked release.
however, the reviewer has a good point. but at the same time, i dunno in what ways i'd be happy with molly changing. *shrug*

MN_punkmaster-skaman (March 21, 2008)

This album is way better than what the reviewer says. If anything, they're trying to stay away from "Drunken Lullabies". Great songwriting by Dave King as usual. It's a pretty good follow up to "Within A Mile Of Home".

ItsAgiftAndAcurse (March 17, 2008)

Fantastic album! And I completely disagree with the reviewer, I was praying they DIDN'T CHANGE and they didn't.

But they did get pretty creative on this album, especially in that song that gets heavy toward the end. My favorite songs are 1,4,9 and 10. The only songs I didn't really like were 2 and 3, but after a few more listens I might come around on those.

Bostonian (March 8, 2008)

just one thing...most of the pogues are sober. Shane is the only one drunk on stage every night.

domotime (March 6, 2008)

gaslight anthem sucks* note

domotime (March 6, 2008)

now i may be alone on this but...... why do you want flogging molly to change? why do you want them to progress? i fell in love with flogging over 6 years ago, because i liked the stuff they were all ready putting out

its an irish punk/folk band. i WELCOME the continuation of their awesome sound. and TRUE flogging fans can really appreciate that. Drunken Lullubies brought a quick pace "drinking song" atmosphere, while Within a Mile Home brought in a little more country/folk.

this ablum...Float...ive listened to 10 times through all ready. one word can describe it = beautiful. How can you NOT hear the change in the band? The songs about getting drunk, and having a good time are well and good....but these songs actually mean something to the musician.

thats another thing you really need to appreciate about flogging over other bands..... they are writing music and songs for themselves, rather than for a fan base. they dont take themselves seriously...and they tour non-stop. I met Dave last night and i needed to tell him how much I truly appreciate everything he and the res of his band does.

Float, Punch Drunk, Story So Far = gorgeous songs
Make a fool out of me, requeim, pattis lament, on the back of a broken drea = fast paced fun songs

i WELCOME the new additions to the live set...and dont want retarded stuck up assholes holding them back. seriously what kind of progression are you looking for? should every band just quit after 3 years? there's so much AWFUL music and bands out there, that for once a band is sticking to their guns..sticking to what sounds goodo...and it does.

TheMike (March 6, 2008)

Yeah, nothing stunned me QUITE as much as "Tomorrow Comes a Day Too Soon" or "Whistles the Wind", but this has some really good songs. I don't find this album goes as low as the worst songs on their previous albums, so that's a plus. But they're feeling a little too comfortable with their formula. Which is fine, but it doesn't have that same wide eyed enthusiasm their previous albums did. But, maybe it's just me that's changed.

Still, I really like this album.

baseball (March 6, 2008)

Also mean to say that the closing track "The Story So Far" is a great song though, score is for that.

baseball (March 6, 2008)

AP just gave Float a 4 and 1/2 out of 5. Said the most important release of the year if not the last decade....sweet

Well that's a pretty ridiculous claim.

As for the album, now that I've listened, this is good but I'd say probably their weakest album overall. I really liked Within A Mile of Home and thought there were some interesting elements going on with more variety. This sounds like a step back. Also preferred the production on the previous album.

Still, this is a solid album. 6.5-7/10.

LookBackAndLaugh (March 6, 2008)

I have been to Ireland multiple times, and I recognize that drinking is a large part of the culture. But it just has always felt to me like that's the only thing most of these Celtic Punk bands talk about. I feel like it's more of a gimmick than anything. That's why I at least appreciate bands like Oi Polloi, and Mill a h-Uile Rud (even though they aren't Irish).

sXenester (March 6, 2008)

DKM don't posture themselves as Irish. Yes, they play irish-influenced punk, some songs more heavily than others, but they make no claims of coming from the homeland. Nothing wrong with wearing your heritage on your sleeve, unless you're one of the unwashed assmass that pose as Irish around here because you love DKM so much.

T. Duggins sounds kinda irish to me, but that dude fucking loves being from Chicago.

Score is for the ignorant first paragraph of this review.

aa540 (March 6, 2008)

AP just gave Float a 4 and 1/2 out of 5. Said the most important release of the year if not the last decade....sweet

baseball (March 6, 2008)

Yeah, the view was amazing from there. I did that before I ate breakfast at like 10 or 11am after being up all night on the flight. Almost fell asleep up there, hah.

fallingupwards84 (March 5, 2008)

baseball - yes the Guinness is most definitely better over there; you went to the brewery to get your free pint at the very top, correct? good stuff

baseball (March 5, 2008)

I've been to Ireland multiple times, my brother lived there for 6-12 months on more than one occasion. I've visited Dublin as well as all over the country side with people from Ireland, and drinking is most certainly a part of that culture.

Great fucking country though, visit if you can. I had a blast. And the Guinness is definitely better.

fallingupwards84 (March 5, 2008)

LookBackandLaugh - if you've ever visited Dublin then you would know that drinking is indeed a very legitimate part of Irish culture... its literally everywhere

aa540 (March 5, 2008)

Flatfoot 56 are a straight edge Irish punk band. And people only hate on Flogging molly because they have gotten so popular and some jocks/ college frat boys like them as well as punks now....the punk scene is full of crybabies who complain when a band gets some mainstream attention.

LookBackAndLaugh (March 5, 2008)

It kind of annoys me how Irish=drinking for most of the bands who are 'Celtic Punk' or whatever. It kind of just presents a very stereotyped view of the culture.

This is why there will never be a straight-edge Celtic Punk band. That would be hilarious though.

stillanonymous (March 5, 2008)

With this review the writer has already clinched the 2008 Pretentious Asshole of the Year Award presented by Pitchfork. Congratulations.

Seriously, you have nothing bad to say about the album. You basically criticize them for being consistently good.

ozmanx (March 5, 2008)

It's decent but the choice of single, that is playing on the radio, is not very good at all.

TheMike (March 5, 2008)

Three songs out fifty. La-dee-fucking-da, they're identical.

The only similarities between Tobacco Island and Streams of Whiskey is the instrumental bit. Tobacco Island has a much more grim feeling, whereas Streams is a very happy drinking song. Sentimental Johnny and Fiesta have a similar vibe, but are very different. I'll give you that Another Bag of Bricks is a ripoff of Turkish song of the Damned, though. But in general, the differences between their sounds and styles are just as significant and those between a great number of bands you probably listen to.

FelixT (March 5, 2008)

"Please stop comparing bands lie this to the Pogues. Inspiration adknowledged but the music is different the vibe is different and the time is most definitely different. "

Really? So you didn't realize that Turkish Song of the Damn and Big Bag of Bricks, Fiesta and Sentimental Johnny and Streams of Whiskey and Tobacco Island are really the same songs under different names? But yeah, the music is really different... not!

HonestAbe (March 5, 2008)

""Since when is T. Duggins NOT irish?"

he might be officially of Irish heritage, just as you are german or something but have never been to Germany but T. Duggins is just some dude from central Illinois....farmland.

They play at EIU all the time, because he grew up in the area and eventually movied to chicago which is about four hours away

His accent is totally fake and he isn't some irish immigrant or something like that, he's from fucking farmland illinois

That being said I love the tossers, or used to anyway alot, but they blow FM away any day of the week

teeto (March 4, 2008)

I really dig "punch drunk grinning soul". Go ahead and complain they didn't change it up enough, that tune has a rad beat

TheMike (March 4, 2008)

I'm just getting tired of the elitism in the punk scene. I don't know, if I don't like a band, I ignore them and listen to something else. Everyone here seems so eager to broadcast their dislike of bands, and it just seems so self serving. I mean, I even find it annoying when they bitch about Fall Out Boy or the like. We get it, they're not punk. I don't like them either, and I care even less about your opinion.

Relating this back to Flogging Molly, it seems that every a time a band has a growing fan base, everyone wants to rag on them to make themselves sound cool. It's this sense of elitism that ruins punk for me. I guess every scene has it. But it's horrible here. Especially on punknews.

sumwon (March 4, 2008)

If you've even casually followed DKM or Flogging Molly you'd be pretty "unique" if you don't know The Pogues.

BarleyPat (March 4, 2008)

People who like to think they are too cool for Flogging Molly by name dropping bands like The Pogues because they think it makes them unique are stoked.

TheMike (March 4, 2008)

I like this album. Quite a lot, actually.

weegmc (March 4, 2008)

Please stop comparing bands lie this to the Pogues. Inspiration adknowledged but the music is different the vibe is different and the time is most definitely different.
As fo rth "irish Punk' what is tht and why is theri some debate of irish credibility? Just stupid.

NotPatriotic (March 4, 2008)

Score is for Kings of Nothin'
They really have nothing to do with this review except this cover art is sort of like Over the Counter Culture.

telegraphrocks (March 4, 2008)

Since when is T. Duggins NOT irish?

Score's for The Tossers.

Cyanotic (March 4, 2008)

They don't sound anything like the Pogues, really.

Pretty disappointing album considering it's been four years since the last one.

televisioneyes (March 4, 2008)

this album is pretty embarrassing

blanktapesemptybottles (March 4, 2008)

wait wait wait and you like New Found Glory... okay douche

Hey_Asshole (March 4, 2008)

words cannot express how much fuck this band.

for real, it is shocking to me that people loves this band so much. if i wanted to hear the pogues, i will listen to the pogues

aa540 (March 4, 2008)

This review sucks....this is thier best work i think.....back to a more rocking sound then the last cd.....if you like Flogging Molly, you won't want to miss this cd...I love it! Cd of the year for me....

banal242 (March 4, 2008)

Still love their live shows. I hope to like this, too.

wallofyouth (March 4, 2008)

yeah, this band bores the shit outta me

FrankReich (March 4, 2008)

I always enjoyed their live show but found the albums boring as hell.

Dante3000 (March 4, 2008)

When did Pennywise start doing Irish music?
I still love that Irish bands can constantly sing about being Irish and everyone loves it Whole Wheat Bread goes, "I grew up black" and everyone's like, "OMG We get it, quit playing the race card"...That's not saying their music is good...Wait, why am I defending WWB?
-Dante

npmoran (March 4, 2008)

This review is horrible. I don't give a damn who you think has more Irish credibility. I know Dave King is from Ireland. So what. Just review the damn album.

fallingupwards84 (March 4, 2008)

i would have bet 100 dollars before i clicked on this link that this would get the standard 7-8 star rating that all average albums get on punknews... good thing i didnt

baseball (March 4, 2008)

But here's the REAL question.... is that gatefold vinyl edition on COLORED vinyl???

First press is on black vinyl. Subsequent pressings, I believe, will be on green vinyl. They will be colored at least I read.

It's a change of pace, everything else they've done was just on green I believe. I really just hope the vinyl is heavier this time, the others weren't great sound quality.

telegraphrocks (March 4, 2008)

But here's the REAL question.... is that gatefold vinyl edition on COLORED vinyl???

Signed,
Dorkus Malorkus.

fattony (March 4, 2008)

@HonestAbe: You have a very ethnocentric view of accents. EVERYONE has an accent (including you), and you most certainly can "gain" an accent (or at the very least, learn to mimic other accents well). King lived in Dublin until he was 17, so I'm gonna go ahead and say his accent is the real deal, and his English accent is the one that's mimicked.

Anyway, pretty ho-hum album. Agree with the review 100%. The formula's getting tired. IMO, it got tired before the end of Drunken Lullabies.

baseball (March 4, 2008)

You're right, people never change their vocal delivery/sound to fit the type of music they're playing.

HonestAbe (March 4, 2008)

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=W173LBFDSX0

How do you go from no accent singing hair metal, to full irish accent singing "Irish music."

You lose an accent not gain it, plus the dudes been living in the U.S. for like 20 years

FelixT (March 4, 2008)

I just bought it 10 minutes ago, I am listening to it right now, so I won't give my score so soon. But I just wanted to say that I am quite annoyed by the fact that every promo picture of Irish influenced band is around a wooden table, drinking pints of beer. I mean come on, the picture on the album cover is quite similar to that insite the Valley of the Shadow of Death booklet, which is similar to that of so many Irish punk bands. Try some originality! You don't have to be drunk to be Irish! There are so many Irish who don't even drink in Ireland, Irish American bands should stop trying to represent what Ireland was nearly a century ago.

TheMike (March 4, 2008)

I agree with baseball. This review sounded like something pitchfork would publish.

baseball (March 4, 2008)

Can someone explain to me why people are so obsessed with 'authenticity' with this band or any other culturally influenced one? When did it become not okay to play music that is rooted in a different culture than your own? Maybe they're playing Irish influenced music because, I dunno, they enjoy listening to and playing it?

How is this different from any given white suburban punk band singing about the working class they're not a part of, or whatever?

I usually don't trash reviews on here either, but this didn't tell me anything at all about the album. There were obvious differences between Within A Mile of Home and Drunken Lullabies. I'd like to hear some comparison in relation to this one, not some meaningless internet commentary on 'authenticity'.

TheMike (March 4, 2008)

They've always said it's a punk / Irish hybrid, not one exclusively.

Haven't heard all of this yet, but I plan to change that soon.

sumwon (March 4, 2008)

Good review though.

sumwon (March 4, 2008)

Float is an album of consistently ...well-structured songs

How? I listened to about half the album and every song was verse/chorus/verse/chorus/bridge/chorus.

Plus, almost everyone will agree that horns do not make ska, so why do bagpipes and fiddles autmomatically make Irish music? This is cookie cutter pop music with some Irish instrumentation. It still isnt atrocious though.

damo (March 4, 2008)

good review fella - nice to see a well-known band get constructive criticism too

i still feel that Flogging Molly have to be the most overrated and cringeworthy band of all time. really can't think of anyone who competes

ashtraymonument (March 4, 2008)

i think you mean requiem for a dying song, not requiem for a dream

GlassPipeMurder (March 4, 2008)

seriously, what's the difference between this and the other three records of theirs? it's good for a listen or two, but the replayability value is pretty damn low...

their previous stuff was quite a bit better imo. nothing much sticks out here.

AnotherBoringStory (March 4, 2008)

Good album, but I miss the more folk-ish ballads. Within A Mile Of Home had a bunch of them, and I wish this was more in the same vein.

danperrone (March 4, 2008)

a well-known punk band getting less than a seven! yeah!!!! i love it

seriously, what's the difference between this and the other three records of theirs? it's good for a listen or two, but the replayability value is pretty damn low...

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