The Pogues established themselves as the world's first and best Celtic punk group throughout the 1980s and 1990s and gained a devoted band of followers in the process. Hailing from the King's Cross neighborhood of London, the misfit musicians played from their Irish souls, but with a punk-rock twist, turning sea shanties and funeral dirges into rollicking, rousing numbers played furiously at full tilt.
In September of 2006, Rhino Records reissued the bands first five albums in newly expanded versions. The bands' debut album, Red Roses for Me, chronicles the Pogues' raucous and unruly infancy. Though the band was one of constant reincarnation, losing and gaining members religiously throughout their 20-year run, the original six members mesh in a way that suggests their compatibility both musically and as mates. Bonus tracks of note on the expanded version include "The Leaving of Liverpool" and "The Band Played Waltzing Matilda."
If I Should Fall From Grace With God, the band's third album, finds them at the top of their professional game. Produced by Steve Lillywhite, this disc features gems such as "The Fairy Tale of NY," "Thousands Are Sailing," and "The Broad, Majestic Shannon." Bonus tracks such as "Mountain Dew" and "The Irish Rover" serve to enhance the album further.
Peace and Love features the most diversified range of songwriting. Its like a Pogues' discography with at least one original contribution from every member of the group. From the big-band opener, "Gridlock," to the bonus track cover of the Rolling Stones' "Honky Tonk Women," Peace and Love displays the Pogues' ability to deftly draw from all styles and influences, not solely their Irish folk nor London punk roots.
Also newly reissued are Rum, Sodomy & the Lash and Hell's Ditch. Pick up all five and kick up a devil of a row.
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