First up were Boston area based BarRoom Heros, a three piece power-punk trio consisting for the Rice brothers on guitar/bass and vocals and a wild, arms flailing, mass of dreadlocks on drums. Probably best known for opening for the Dropkick Murphys when they were something like 12 years old, I saw ‘em last year opening for Justin Keenan and it was great to see them again and without sounding like an old aunt they have really grown – musically and physically, in fact they could probably now get served in a bar if they had decent fake ids. Early Dropkick Murphys and Darkbuster are the obvious influences – Darkbusters Skinhead was covered and as was a great punked up version of The Dubliners Seven Drunk Nights.
Aussie band Ramshackle Army were up next. They are one of those bands that people speak highly about but I haven’t to date invested a lot of time in listening too ’em. Well I will after tonight, these guys and gal were a high intensity sweat drenched riot – fiddle, banjo, punk rock and the rock star that is Gaz in full flight with shapes thrown and face contortions
Between each of the sets there was an acoustic set from Live Nude Girls (actually two girls and a guy who all kept their clothes on) – fiddle, double bass and girl on guitar with a big voice. A nice touch that kept the momentum going as the bands changed over.
Its been about five years since I’ve seen Boston party punks the Beantown Boozehounds, good to say they are still slamming shots, guzzling PBR and playing hard. Lot’s of ragging on the touring “Austrians”. I do remember last time I saw ’em a lot more beer was spat in the air – maturity possibly? Nah, never.
Finally up were The Go Set who have been one of my favorite bands from when I heard them first over ten years ago. I got the taste of them live last year when I saw Justin Keenan on his solo tour so my expectations for the full band were high. The set started with bagpipes from the back of the venue and as the band were lead to stage the pipes turned into full force punk and pipes and occasional punk and double pipes with the addition of second piper Sean from Alternative Ulster. Expectations were met – the Go Set were as good live as so disk – great songs, tight and they had the crowd eating out of the palms of their hands. I’m not sure how may fans The Go Set had in the venue at the beginning of the set but by the end of the set I knew – everyone including the bartender. All the classics were done – 1788, Davey, Old Dark Brown, Sing Me a Song and a very special off the stage, in the middle of the floor, totally acoustic version of 5AM .I have to give a shout out to The Go Set drummer, Agostino Soldati – John Bonham raised from the dead with veins pumped full of redbull – I’ve never seen or heard drums hit so hard and so fast. The set ended with a cover of AC/DCs Long Way to the Top with help form Gaz and the Boozehounds. The Go Set promise to be back next year for another tour of the US and they are not to be missed.