Everybody Out! - Everybody Out! (Cover Artwork)
Staff Pick

Everybody Out!

Everybody Out! (2008)


Even though the Dropkick Murphys' recent major label debut may have been a stroke or two off par, they keep contributing in other ways, with former members branching off and forming new bands like freshly watered mogwai. First it was Mike McColgan and his Street Dogs who have gotten better with each album, and now former Murphys guitarist Rick Barton has teamed up with Sweeney Todd of the Lost City Angels and ex-members of On Broken Wings to form Everybody Out!

As the band's MySpace page explains, "Everybody out!" was a rallying cry for striking workers to put down their tools and hit the picket line, common in the heyday of the labor movement and before capitalists could outsource labor to industrializing areas. Barton and Sweeney have kept the message alive (much like the Street Dogs and the Murphys before them), making sure that working class music stays fresh, relevant and to the left. And on their way to crafting an energetic blend of street punk, ska, Oi! and rock & roll, Everybody Out! has created the best party punk album in years, if ever the genre existed before.

Out the gates with tongue rolling like Strummer and a sing-along vitality not much short of Cock Sparrer, Everybody Out! only gets better from there. This "party punk" of which I speak is the result of lively song construction complemented with a plethora of auxiliary additions, from horns and piano to accordion, slide guitar, mandolin and a throng of backup vocalists -- which includes Mark Unseen -- all contributing towards a variety that keeps the record dynamic and spirited.

Among the standouts are the bouncy two-tone of "Jack the Lad" (no relation to the 4-Skins tune of the same name) and ska-punky "No Runaway," split between the horn-driven punk of "Yeah Yeah Yeah Yeah" and Oi!/street-style of "Truth" with its no-bullshit approach to progressive change: "Time to join the cause and we can all break free / No time for words it's all been said before / But time to start a real democracy / Believe in the truth and not what they ignore." "Billy Cole" carries on the folksy Celtic tendencies Dropkick Murphys have taken to the mainstream, with a great melody and song structure, though the lyrics don't quite come together in the end like they seem they should.

Still, it's hard to find too many faults in Everybody Out!. "Evil Place/Revenge of Sweeney Todd" seems like kind of a throwaway track, and some more refined lyrics wouldn't hurt, but make no mistake, this album doesn't disappoint. So Everybody Out!, and hit the streets towards your nearest record store and pick up a copy for yourself. The party won't start until you do.

Now let's all cross our fingers and hope for a new Spicy McHaggis project.