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Campbell: Dropkick Murphy’s release new album before tour

Al+Barr+from+Dropkick+Murphys+at+Nova+Rock+2014
Al Barr from Dropkick Murphys at Nova Rock 2014

Al Barr from Dropkick Murphys at Nova Rock 2014

Alfred Nitsch

Alfred Nitsch

Al Barr from Dropkick Murphys at Nova Rock 2014

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“11 Short Stories of Pain & Glory” by Dropkick Murphys

Released: Jan. 6

Genre: Rock

Rating: A

Boston’s Dropkick Murphys are known for their fast-paced, Irish rock that features not only your classic rock instruments, but pipes and bagpipes as well. Known for their hit “I’m Shipping Up to Boston,” the Murphys are proud supporters of the fighting Irish. On their latest album, the Murphys stay true to their sound, starting off the album with the instrumental song “The Lonesome Boatman” which features bagpipes and gets listeners hyped for the rest of the album. The Murphys are a little unusual, though, as they are a blue-collar band as they originally were all workers for Samuel Adams and would only tour for three months of the year until they all began to dedicate their time to the band. “First Class Loser” features Ken Casey’s unusual, but extremely Irish sounding vocals that show off his raspy-yelps. The band does a phenomenal job of keeping up with their Irish roots as they have their vocals and instrumentals down to a science in order to create the authentic sound, like in “4-15-13.”

 

“ReAniMate 3.0: The CoVeRs eP” by Halestorm

Released: Jan. 20

Genre: Rock

Rating: B+

Most bands do a cover song at some point in the career, but very few put out an entire six-song EP dedicated to just that. From White Snake, Sophie B. Hawkins, Joan Jett, Twenty One Pilots, Soundgarden and Metallica, Halestorm cover a wide variety of rock bands from the 80s to present day. “Heathens” –a cover of Twenty One Pilots – does not stick to the same electronic sounds that the original band used, but instead features their own instrumentals and heavy bass-lines as well as lead singer Elizabeth Hale’s screams. Although “Heathens” may not have been the best suite for the band, as they didn’t really live up to TOP, it was at least experimental and interesting. As for “Ride the Lightning,” though, the Metallica cover was a perfect fit as Hale was able to match James Hetfield’s vocals and the band was able to live up to the explosive guitar solo. The Joan Jett cover of  “I Hate Myself for Loving You” is icing on the cake as you feel like you’ve been taken back to the 80s and Hale’s raspy vocals reminisce on how rad Jett was and still is. The cover album was a unique concept for the band that will allow listeners to broaden their horizons.

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