2016-09-25 ALBUM REVIEW – SISTERS OF MURPHY "Working Stiffs Unite!" (2016)

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Sisters of Murphy “Working Stiffs Unite!” Silverdish Records
Release date: 5 September 2016
Running time: 47:12, 11 tracks

 
This is one of the most awaited albums of 2016. Sisters of Murphy were our band of the month in September 2014 and their “Holy Show (remastered) EP” was no. 8 at our best EPs for 2014. The seven piece band from Rochester, NY, have finally released their debut album and I must admit that it’s one of the most enjoyable albums of this year.

Mark Tichenor (vocals, concertina), Cedric Young (mandolin, banjo, whistle, pipes, vocals), Scott Austin (acustic guitar, vocals), Haley Moore (fiddle), Jona Chartrand (electric guitar, vocals), Rick Elmer (drums, vocals) and Bruce Lish (bass, vocals) released “Working Stiffs Unite!” last September 9, that is, Labor day in the USA. The album kicks off with “L.O.V.E.”, a fiddle and banjo driven kick-ass track that reminds me of the Fighting Jamesons. It’s followed by “40 Days at Sea” and addictive number with an amazing fiddle and tin whistle theme.

One Word of this Kiss” starts with electric guitar and little by little the rhythm section, the fiddle and the tin whistle join in. Even if it’s a slower number than the previous ones, it works perfectly well.

The next song is called “Emerald Isle” and it has an American folk twist thanks to the fiddle and the banjo. After that song, Sisters of Murphy deliver another gem on the album: “It’s a Shame”. Celtic pop-rock at its best.

Track no. 6 is a brilliant Celtic suite: first of all, the uilleann pipes play an intro based on “She Moved through the Fair”. Secondly, the core of the suite, a poignant song that finally evolves into a rocking song featuring  the “Morrison’s (Jig)

The following track is titled “Jack Haggerty”. It’s a wonderful song with a traditional touch.

The title track “Working Stiffs Unite!” is not a Celtic oi!/street punk  number, but taking into account its lyrics and the music, one could say that it’s a street folk song. A great song to sing-along. “Bring the power to the people / Working Stiffs Unite!

17” is not a Sex Pistols cover, but an interesting self-penned song.

Track no. 10 is a live rendition of the Sisters of Murphy’s classic song “Katie Dear”. Obviously, one of the hottest moments on the album. The last number is a radio edit version of “Green Over Red”.

Working Stiffs Unite!” is a well-balanced album full of catchy songs. Apart from the “Morrison’s (jig)” on “Green Over Red”, there are no over-exposed standards. IMHO, a must have for music lovers. Enjoy!

 

Track list:

01 – L.O.V.E. 3:59
02 – 40 Days At Sea 2:56
03 – One Word Of This Kiss 3:39
04 – Come Back To The Emerald Isle 3:37
05 – Its A Shame 5:03
06 – Green Over Red 5:44
07 – Jack Haggerty 3:14
08 – Working Stiffs Unite! 5:02
09 – 17 3:27
10 – Katie Dear (Live) 5:32
11 – Green Over Red (Radio Edit) 4:40

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Review by Kinksmarkham

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