The Real McKenzies – Beer and Loathing (Fat Wreck Chords)

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Beer and Loathing is, by my count, the Real McKenzies thirteenth album. Their sophomore album, Clash of the Tartans, was one of the first records that I reviewed for Mass Movement way back in 1998 and I’ve reviewed, and fallen hard for, every single one of their albums between then and now. So, if you’re looking for some dirt or less than complimentary words about Beer and Loathing then you’ve come to the wrong place.

Me and the McKenzies go way back and, together, we’ve weathered all manner of punk rock storms, trials and tribulations during the last twenty years and some change. And given singer Paul’s boundless enthusiasm and energy, and unless we’re blown off course by my early(ish) demise, we’ll almost certainly spend the next couple of decades doing exactly the same

Given that, it’s my absolute pleasure to confirm that it’s business as usual on Beer and Loathing for the McKenzies. It’s all full throttle, sing-a—long punk rock anthems amped up by bagpipes and an undercurrent of Highland folk, wit, wisdom and charm interspersed by the odd, heartfelt quieter moment. The Real McKenzies haven’t let me down yet and with tunes like 36 Barrels, Whose Child is This and The Ballad of Cpl. Hornburg leading the charge on Beer and Loathing, just like the ’72 442, Innis & Gunn and Mike Mignola, I’m kind of thinking that they never will.  And you can take that all the way to the punk rock bank. Slàinte mhath…  Tim Cundle

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