Legendary Celtic punk rockers Dropkick Murphys are back once again with their superb 10th studio album, Turn Up That Dial.
The Dropkick Murphys are into their 25th year as a band and with their 10th studio album, they show absolutely no signs of slowing down. This is the album we’ve all been feeling since the first lockdown. It’s fast, energetic and makes you want to go mental and break things whether that be bones or possessions, by the time you find out it’ll be too late.
Not to say these guys aren’t good songwriters but don’t expect clever songwriting or hidden meanings in this album. It’s 100%, middle finger in the air, unrestrained punk rock.
They got something to say and they’re going to damn well say it or yell it in your face is more accurate for this album. It’s all about letting off steam this time round and that’s exactly what they’re doing and what you should be doing when you ‘turn up the dial’ on this one.
When The Dropkick Murphys started out, people didn’t really know if their punk sound would mix with Celtic style riffs and jigs, and of course they were wrong. That still rings true 25 years later.
Their trademark gang-vocal hooks lead this album and their Celtic sound is ever present. Especially on the album’s title track “Turn Up That Dial”. It sets the tone and feel for this album and what you can expect from songs like “Middle Finger” and “Smash S**t Up” that appear later on the track.
This bands mischievousness also plays out as a sort of undertone to some of the songs on this album. It can be heard on the track “Mick Jones Stole My Pudding”, which is inspired by a time The Clash guitarist stole a pudding from a studio fridge the Murphys once recorded in.
The album does slow down with the last track. “I Wish You Were Here” feels more heartfelt. It’s a song about two lovers being apart and finding it hard to bear it. It’s certainly a change of pace from the punk charged previous songs on the album but it doesn’t feel out of place at all.
It serves as a kind of cool down and leaves you on a warm note even though the lyrics are a little sad. It’s a perfect closer on the album and it just shows that these guys are versatile.
This album is good, clean fun and not to be taken too seriously, just have a good time. They’re not trying to please everyone but just trying to record some good songs in which they’ve excelled at with this album. The Dropkick Murphys have been going strong for 25 years and after hearing this album, we can only hope they’ll still be around in another 25 years.
Purchase their Turn Up That Dial album here and stream it below
Words by Louis Suffill