The Real McKenzies

Two Devils Will Talk

Written by: PP on 24/11/2017 07:27:43

Canadian Celtic punkers The Real McKenzies are celebrating their 25th anniversary as a band this year by releasing their ninth full-length album "Two Devils Will Talk". Their lineup continues to be a revolving door of musicians with only vocalist Paul McKenzie staying put throughout the years, and the new album is no exception: longtime guitarist Mark Boland has departed and there's yet another drummer in the fold (they've had more drummers than albums), but the soundscape stays largely unchanged.

What has always separated The Real McKenzies from their more famous counterparts in Dropkick Murphys and Flogging Molly is their incorporation of street punk themes into their folk punk soundscape. When your comparison points are closer to Flatfoot 56 and The Briggs than the two formed despite being heavy on the bagpipe front, the result is a less appealing and a less joyous expression that has never really broken through to the large audiences. "Two Devils Will Talk" is no exception. While "Due West" and "Weyburn" start the record off with a party of upbeat Celtic instrumentation and catchy vocals, already fourth track "Seafarers" exposes the more melancholic side of the band's expression and one that has, if you ask me, never really suited this type of music. Similarly, "Northwest Passage" just isn't upbeat enough to be a fun track despite the bagpipes playing a strong role in the main melody.

Later on the band's attempt at humour during "Fuck The Real McKenzies" falls a little flat in what feels like an insult to all likeminded bands: "fuck Flogging Molly, let's tear off all their clothes, we can't be any clearer, there's nothing more to say, fuck these bands already, fuck them all today".

Overall, "Two Devils Will Talk" is a dime-a-dozen folk punk album that brings nothing new to the table. That's not necessarily a requirement from my side, but when half the songs are forgettable and anonymous, the few bangers won't rescue the rest of the album. Not terrible but quite boring.


Download: Due West, Weyburn
For the fans of: The Briggs, Flatfoot 56, Sham 69, The Tossers
Listen: Facebook

Release date 03.03.2017
Fat Wreck Chords

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