The Mahones “paint the town red” raising some pints at the Lansdowne Pub in Boston.

The Mahones played the Lansdowne Pub across from Boston’s legendary Fenway Park as part of the Smithwick’s Sessions Pub Rock Tour. The Mahones are a Canadian Irish punk rock band that formed on St. Patrick’s Day 1990. Front man singer/guitarist Finny McConnell and accordian player Katie Kaboom have been influenced by traditional and Irish, punk, and rock music from the Dubliners to the Pogues, Stiff Little Fingers, and Husker Du.

Legend has it The Pogues originally called themselves Pogue Mahone (póg mo thóin in Gaelic), which means “kiss my ass,” but settled on The Pogues. The Mahones took the second half as a tribute to The Pogues front man Shane McGowan.

Their songs have been featured in movies including “Celtic Pride” as the title song in Celtic Pride, “Paint The Town Red” was featured in The Fighter, and “A Little Bit Of Love” (with Damnhait Doyle) was recently in Irvine Welsh’s Ecstasy.

The Mahones are celebrating their 25th year by releasing their 12th album titled The Hunger And The Fight. The album was was produced by Finny McConnell and Dave “Brownsound” Baksh (Sum 41, Black Cat Attack) and was recorded at Gentlemen’s Den Studio (Toronto).

The Hunger And The Fight is a two-part concept album, which is a first in the punk rock genre. Part One is in keeping with Irish folk acoustic style (with a little punk thrown in for good measure), with songs based around Ireland, and more specifically, the city of Dublin. Part Two will be more of an electric Irish punk album, with songs based on the United States, and mainly New York City. Part one is scheduled to release October 2014 and Part Two is scheduled for February 2015.

In Finny’s words, “The Hunger & The Fight narrates the struggle and perseverance of the Irish people, and the evolution of Irish music from Irish Folk to Irish Punk. Part One opens with the battle march of Ireland’s last king, Brian Boru, and spans centuries of Irish culture, touching on Ireland’s heritage, occupation, famines, fight for independence, immigration, and most importantly, musical richness and storytelling.”

“Changing scenes from Ireland to America, Part Two will focus on the deadly journey of Irish immigrants to the United States, and the major role that they played in America’s history, including their contribution to America’s independence, the ways in which they helped build the country, and major Irish figures in American culture, including the first Irish president of the United States. The album finishes with modern Irish punk, thus concluding the journey.”

Their set started with “Shakespeare Road,” “Angels And Devils,” “A Great Night On The Lash,” “The Hunger & The Fight,” “The Wild Rover,” “Ghost Of A Whiskey Devil.” “London,” “Down The Boozer,” “Give It All You Got,” “Paint The Town Red,” “Stars (Oscar Wilde),” “Across The U.S.A.,” and “Take No Prisoners.”

Finny lovingly told the story behind “Past The Pint Of No Return.” The story, as Finny remembers it, is: The Mahones went to hang with the Dropkick Murphys in Germany on Finny’s birthday several years ago and Finny and Scruffy Wallace went out for a night of drinking. Scruffy currently plays the bagpipes with the Dropkicks and was previously in The Mahones. Finny had a few too many and Scruffy wound up dragging Finny back to the hotel. These two are truly brothers in arms.

The Mahones set continued with “King Of Copenhagen,” “Is This Bar Open ‘Til Tomorrow,” “Queen And Tequila,” “Celtic Pride,” and “Drunken Lazy Bastard.”

The Mahones ended the night with an encore of “Drunken Night In Dublin,” “This Blood Is On Your Hands,” and “Teenage Kicks (Stiff Little Fingers cover).”

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The Mahones
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About The Author

Bill grew up in and around Boston in Dorchester and Quincy and still lives on the South Shore of Massachusetts. A life long musician cutting his teeth in punk, hard rock, and metal he still plays and records with his band Third Knuckle. Bill has taken photos of local Boston bands for several years helping bands as a favor to other musicians and as a hobby for bands recently shooting The Cro-Mags, Comeback Kid, Anit-Nowhere League, Death Before Dishonor, Slapshot, Ignite, Guttermouth, and Sloppy Seconds. Bill shoots under BAMF Photography and started shooting & reviewing for the NRR team in early 2014.