Somewhat unsurprisingly, the sixth album from Celtic punks Flogging Molly, ‘Life Is Good’, is arguably one of the band’s most upbeat and optimistic records to date. Despite the title coming from a conversation had between frontman Dave King and his mother as she lay on her deathbed, the likes of ‘The Hand of John F Sullivan’ and ‘Welcome to Adamstown’ kickstart the record with a feeling of urgency and elation.
As the album progresses, however, the euphoria is gradually replaced with a sense of optimism, becoming firmly established by the time the fittingly-titled ‘Hope’ rolls around, and sticking around long after the final notes of ‘Until We Meet Again’ play out.
Of course, it wouldn’t be a Flogging Molly record without a certain degree of politics entering the equation. ‘Reptiles (We Woke Up)’ and ‘Crushed (Hostile Nations)’ are the two most obvious examples, and though harbouring vastly different aesthetics, they both serve to add to the rousing sense of optimism that flows through the core of ‘Life Is Good’.
While the uninitiated might well dismiss Flogging Molly as a knock-off Dropkick Murphys, it’s hard to imagine the Murphys crafting a record that feels both as heartfelt and as uplifting as this. A bold and confident sixth effort.
Words: Dave Beech
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