Before anything else, I think it needs to be acknowledged that “Firkin” is a great name for a band. It has an great, antiquated, British Isles pedigree. As a unit of measure, (meaning roughly nine gallons!) it has a vague “mass consumption” reference. And, of course, all that Firkin’ wordplay just Firkin’ waitin’ to be employed!
But a great name doesn’t mean a firkin’ thing if the band can’t back it up.
And Firkin? Yeah. They bring it. Intense is probably the most appropriate word to describe these rowdy Hungarians. The CD, “A Firkinful Of Beer” (Firkinful?) is a 17-track release, (Yes, I said SEVENTEEN!) comprised of almost all covers, (with two or three originals, added in for color!) But these covers are different from your phone-in album-filler, there is effort made to make these songs the band’s own. A lot of effort.
The covers vary from traditionals like “The Galway Races,” “Irish Rover,” and “The Drunken Sailor,” to a number of songs from the Flogging Molly catalog! And all of the originals, traditionals and FM covers get the same Firkin’ treatment, (see how well that works!): A ripping, King-esque vocals, traditional instrumentation such as flute, fiddle, and whistle bringing in the Celtic sound and all of that hanging on for its dear life on top of a straight-up heavy metal rhythm section that is, in my opinion, the real star of the show. This is what gives these firkers an identity that really stands out in a field like this!
As far as covers go, the Budapest-based septet does the job right. But I would really like to see a full-length release of original material from these guys! I think it would be something really unusual, in a good Firkin’ way.
Review by Christopher Toler, THE Blathering Gommel!