Dropkick Murphys/Bosstones | 07.10

Words by: Andrew Bruss

Dropkick Murphys/Mighty Mighty Bosstones :: 07.10.08 :: LeLacheur Park :: Lowell, MA

The Mighty Mighty Bosstones
As the unofficial music ambassadors of Boston, there's never any reason to think a hometown show by the Dropkick Murphys will be anything short of stellar, and their set at LeLacheur Park proved to be no exception. Right outside of Beantown, the Dropkicks and their fellow Bostonians, The Mighty Mighty Bosstones, got a stage set up at the Lowell Spinners' ballpark, transforming the entire outfield into one massive sea of bodies. Seeing as this was the first time a concert had been held at the minor league ballpark, the logistics could have been a problem, but this was far from the case. With the diamond roped off, fans could rock it up in front of the stage, while easier going attendees chilled back in the grandstands.

Early on, the reunified Mighty Mighty Bosstones dished out their skankable brand of tunes and got bodies moving and geared up for all that was to come. Given that both bands rose out of the Boston area circuit, the double header brought out a great deal of emotion from both bands. Bosstones' frontman Dicky Barrett said, "It feels really good to be playing with these guys again. I love the Dropkick Murphys. They're real close friends, so it's more than two bands playing together. It's like playing with your brothers." After a set highlight of "Someday I Suppose," a lucky fan proposed to his current-fiancé right onstage before the Bosstones closed their set with "The Impression That I Get."

As the stage crews worked feverishly to get the Dropkicks gear ready to rock, fans chanted "LET'S GO MURPHYS" for twenty minutes before the group took the stage. Eventually, the lights dimmed and a pre-recorded track of a woman singing a Gaelic hymn played before the group literally raged their way through "For Boston." At the start of the tune the crowd was met with a blast of fireworks from behind the stage, but other than a standard lighting rig, they made LeLacheur Park shake and tremble with nothing other than the sheer energy of their performance. No matter where they are, when this group of musicians plays it seems as though crowds erupt into a blissfully chaotic state, an occurrence as inevitable as gravity keeping the Earth in a constant revolution around the sun.

Dropkick Murphys
Frontman Al Barr worked the audience with the ferocity of a caged tiger breaking free, while Ken Casey, his bass playing sidekick, regularly took over vocal duties while Barr romped around the stage. "Tessie," their ode to the Boston Red Sox, as expected, got an exuberant response, and when they tore into "The Warrior's Code" they made a point to get their buddy Mickey, the inspiration for the song, to come onstage and introduce himself.

After taking a breather, the Dropkicks returned to encore with "I'm Shipping Up To Boston," made famous by Martin Scorsese's The Departed, in addition to becoming the theme song for the Sox '07 World Series win. With tons of family and what looked like half of South Boston onstage, the band further demonstrated their affinity to their hometown by inviting The Bunker Hill Pipe Band to the stage for the whole encore, in addition to a dance troupe of heavily sequined girls that one of the Bosstones described as "The Jon Benet Dancers." With friends, family, bagpipes and dancers already onstage, The Mighty Mighty Bosstones returned to help the Dropkicks close the night out with their tried-and-true cover of The Standells' "Dirty Water."

As the field emptied out, and attendees gradually began to get a grasp on the intensity of what they'd just experienced, The Bosstones and the Dropkicks were already packing up for the next stop on the road. However, with the bands on the bill and the location they utilized, it will be hard for them to recreate what they brought to Lowell. When asked about other shows down the road, Dicky Barrett commented, "This [show] is the pinnacle of whatever mountain we're climbing."

Dropkick Murphys' tour dates available here.

JamBase | Massachusetts
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[Published on: 7/15/08]

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shonuff Tue 7/15/2008 01:31PM
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Very cool to see jambase covering different stuff. If you like the dropkick, then check out the tossers

MarkBC star Tue 7/15/2008 02:20PM
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I go to school with a ton of kids from the Boston area, so I've heard just about every thing there is to hear by The Dropkick Murphys. They are AWFUL. No appeal outside of Boston or if you're not Irish. Wow ANOTHER song about getting drunk at the pub and fighting? Please... I like my artists to be diverse and not stuck in one genre, if you can call drunk-Irish-fighting music a genre. Just my opinion, I'm not hating on anyone who does like them, I just don't. I'd love to hear from someone who likes the music and can explain to me the appeal!

RoyofCon Tue 7/15/2008 02:57PM
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Marc, as a lifelong fan of the Murphys(well, as long as they have been around), i'll give you why I am a fan, hopefully this will help you. I fit in with your friends as in I grew up in that area, am irish, and enjoy drinking. Now the main appeal for me is they don't just talk about drinking and fighting. Within their catalog, they talk about a great many things. Everything from the working class to labor unions to war to love and hate. They are working class people, using their music as a voice for where they come from. It may all sound like drinking music, its just the style. I can also drink to any song by the Pogues. But you can hear how proud they are to be able to act as a voice for the working class, and it really becomes seen at their shows. At every show I have been to, it is a family atmosphere. There is never one problem at their shows, everyone is there for the same reason. The band is also great with the fans, letting the entire crowd come on stage at the end of every show. Yeah, they are way different than the bands on here most of the time, but if you take the time to listen to what they talk about in their songs, you may enjoy them.

unevenremainder starstarstarstarstar Tue 7/15/2008 03:02PM
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hey mark, glad you dont like them. but nobody cares. everyone has different tastes, and thank jambase for being on top of all genres of music. if you dont like em, ignore the posts, its pretty simple. these posts are here for the people that do.

MarkBC Tue 7/15/2008 03:11PM
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RoyofCon thanks for the insight. I def can understand that appeal, for me it's the hippie scene with jam bands. I was at All Good this weekend and felt like I was apart of a huge family, especially during Phil and Dark Star. So much love and good energy with the Dead's music! I totally understand that family atmosphere and can dig that you and tons of other people from Boston can find that with this band. Keep on rockin man!

jammasterjustin Tue 7/15/2008 03:44PM
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i used to love this kind of music, especially the bosstones- one of the best ska bands out there. dropkick murphys is a "fun" band to listen to at best. i never really listen to either unless i'm drunk though

jammasterjustin Tue 7/15/2008 03:47PM
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one more thing- its great to see how diverse the show reviews on this site are. anything from kanye west to pearl jam to DMB to mike gordon to this....

Danimal Tue 7/15/2008 05:08PM
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I like diversity too but some of these don't need to be here and this is one of them. I like both of these bands ok it just doesn't need to be on jambase. Go ahead and call me a close-minded hippy who only likes GD/moe./UM/whatever. Besides the Bosstones have sucked ever since they got some love from the mainstream.

phishr82 Tue 7/15/2008 07:15PM
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aerosmith, boston, j. geils band...

chidodger Tue 7/15/2008 10:32PM
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It was at Dropkick in Chicago in 99 when all hell broke out at the metro and The bass player started beating the hell out of one of the bouncers up front. It was 1 of the best shows I'v ever been to. I live in Chicago and have seen these guys at least 10 times as well as the evolution of the band from the origional singer, thru all the lineup changes and additions. it never gets old, great band to catch live, as well as quite a few good albums. good review, but let's kick it up a notch with some pics and setlists.

MyFavBandIsTheBestYoursSucks starstarstarstarstar Wed 7/16/2008 12:38PM
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If you like to go to rock clubs both of these bands are great to see once a year or so.

sschaffner Wed 7/16/2008 02:57PM
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these posts are absolutely not simply here for people who like the corresponding music/musician/band/what-have-you. i think they would become incredibly boring if the only comments made were positive, especially if someone hasn't had a chance to hear whoever we are commenting about. perspective from all angles is greatly appreciated, but let's try to keep it somewhat intelligent and informative. i definitely don't approve of the haters that show up on here.

WidespreadPhanic Fri 7/18/2008 06:22AM
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"It was at Dropkick in Chicago in 99 when all hell broke out at the metro and The bass player started beating the hell out of one of the bouncers up front. It was 1 of the best shows I'v ever been to."

Yeah normally I judges the shows I go to by the music being played not by how many people are acting like retards, people like you who like this type of music like it for the images and ethos of the music not the music itself, otherwise you'd realize a 13 year old could learn any of the intruments in the band for a month and be able to play any song hahahaha.

Yeah this band should definitely not be on here honestly about as similar to real music as blink 182 and hanson and yeah maybe i will hate on those bands because they do suck, there is such a thing as quality in music its not just wholly subjective. IF you want to say everything's subjective then fine if you like mcdonalds better than a nice resturant you're entitled to your opinion just as long as you recognize you like crap better than quality

chidodger Fri 7/18/2008 07:15AM
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Phanic, your not as smart as you think you are. Have you ever actually listened to Dropkick? didn't think so, stop hating.

WidespreadPhanic Fri 7/18/2008 08:12AM
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yeah i go to school in boston so it's hard to walk past a bar and not hear that crap blaring, trust me i've heard plenty of it.

i don't hate anyone i just think this music sucks, there's a difference, and maybe you should try responding to something i said in my comment instead of making the blind assumption that i've just never listened to them, google ad hominem argument and learn to stop making them

CreativSimplicity Fri 7/18/2008 09:40AM
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ok widespread phanic, i want you to go learn to play mandolin, bagpipes, banjo, drums, bass, guitar, and an occasional irish flute. because you know, people like the dropkicks who write punk driven, irish influenced music have no talent and no knowledge of music because theyre punk. what about people like you who only listen to diehard jam bands becuase of that hippie nostalgia, of course attitude and crowd has a lot to do with weather or not you like a band. some of us like chillin on the lawn dancin to the groove and some like fuckin shit up, i like both and goin to a primus show.

WidespreadPhanic Fri 7/18/2008 10:19AM
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i think if "fuckin shit up" accompanies good music then that's fine, but just citing "the bass player started beating the hell out of one of the bouncers up front" as the reason for a show being good is plain retarded, i used to be a big metalhead i loved slayer and metallica i still love tool and primus there are plenty of bands that aren't "diehard hippie" that listen to, and the difference between them and the dropkicks is that they're all talented musicians and didn't just get big by catering to the drunk and dumbed down money-driven crappy boston music scene.

and though i may get nostalgic when listening to some bands i don't listen to them "because of it," one day you'll find out that some people listen to music because of the music itself no matter when or how relevant it is.

i know how to play drums, bass, guitar, piano, some mandolin and banjo. anyone can do it as well as them i encourage you to learn an instrument within two months of playing you'll be able to play any dropkick song. the songwriting isn't great either very formulaic i could write a hit song for them on the crapper.

i don't care if they're irish or not, plenty of good music made by irish people i'm sure, just not the dropkicks cuz they suck.

chidodger Fri 7/18/2008 05:03PM
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Phanic, you sound like a loser. I live in Chicago, and really don't even care too much for Boston. I'm Irish, but I'm not a fall-down drunk, and actually, I'm not even part of a Union at work. However, I'v been a proud Dropkick fan since I was about 15 years old, and now at 26, I still am. Reason being is they are a great band. And my reference to the fight in 99 was because after it got broken up, the entire crowd starting singing Boys On The Docks together, without any musical backing at all from the band. I'v never seen anything like that in my life, other's that were there that night know exactly what I'm talking about. And right on CreativeSimplicity.

chidodger Fri 7/18/2008 05:07PM
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AND ALSO...maybe next time you walk passed a bar in Boston and Dropkick is playing, go inside and try to find a girl so you can finally get laid, and maybe stop seing such an uppity asshole. hater.

WidespreadPhanic Sat 7/19/2008 10:55AM
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That does sound like a fun time, maybe they put on a good show, doesn't mean the music itself is good though. As it seems you're just not smart enough to read what i said and respond to it rather than attacking me personally, there's no point in continuing this argument. Like I said I don't hate anyone, dropkicks included, just don't think there music is good.

And normally when I want to get laid I head over to chicago because most of the girls there are so unsatisfied from lack of good men that they're always ready to get down, especially the irish women who need a little help supporting their tasteless spoiled 26 year old sons who blow all their money seeing the same dropkick shows for 11 years damn dude some of us grow out of the music we were listening to when we were 15 and branch out a bit, find out that there's better music out there

WidespreadPhanic Sat 7/19/2008 10:56AM
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"AND ALSO..." there's probably better things you could be doing at 8 on a friday night go out to for drinks and dinner with all those ladies you can't get away from hahahahhaa

chidodger Sun 7/20/2008 09:04PM
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Son, when it comes to music, YOUR A ROOKIE. AND ALSO, i was at Umph and sts9 last night while you were home on the internet bitching back at me. Parents havent't supported me since I was a teenager, and I don't "grow out of" music I like, that's something Uppity Assholes like you do. Go Dropkick!!!

goatfever starstarstarstarstar Mon 8/11/2008 10:24PM
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Wow! The Bosstones and the Dropkicks on the same bill? Damn, it sucks to live in Alabama sometimes. This sounds like a dream show. Two of my all time favorite bands playing together. I sure wish they'd tour together. Oh well...cross my fingers.