Side One Dummy
To simply dismiss Flogging Molly as a Pogues knockoff would not be totally inaccurate, but terribly unfair, as their album, Swagger, contains a baker’s dozen of infectious songs. Not as punky as the Pogues, Flogging Molly still infuses rock into their more-traditional Irish melodies. Dave King not only sings with energy and passion, but he has also written some very tight, interesting lyrics to go with the familiar-sounding tunes.
Heading east of the Emerald Isle until you get to Russia, you get to the heart of the inspiration for the band DeVotchka. Where Flogging Molly fuses rock with Celtic tunes, DeVotchka fuses rock with Russian music. The marriage for DeVotchka is a bit more strained, but nonetheless produces some nice songs. The lyrics and vocals are less impressive than the musicianship on this record, which is exemplified by the fact that the best tracks are instrumentals, which recall Fiddler on the Roof and Doctor Zhivago.