We get tons of new music by new bands, but occasionally you get hold of a band that’s new to you and you wonder how you’ve not heard of them despite them being on the go for almost 30 years. The upside is now that you’ve fallen in love with their new album, there’s tons more to go and get hold of. Fifteen more albums in the case of Fiddler’s Green.
The first time they hit my ears was with the video for “No Anthem” which sounds like a beautiful marriage between Dropkick Murphys and Die Toten Hosen. It’s as rousing as rousing gets, catchy as all hell. It includes a broad range of instruments and just overall kicks so much arse (or “Arsch” in their native tongue).
Having finally grabbed the album, I’m really happy to say it’s not just the one song that’s great. The whole thing is simply brilliant. Yes, I know I’m gushing but this is one of the most enjoyable records I’ve heard in a while. I do have a soft spot for the Irish folk / punk / metal crossover genre, but Fiddler’s Green have absolutely nailed this. Every track sounds like a ballad or a jig with added adrenaline, and I don’t think my toe has tapped so much for a long time.
My litmus test for this particular type of music is “how would it go down live”? After all, Irish folk music is designed for being performed in front of an audience — it’s the whole ethos and history. I’m glad to say that there’s not a song on Heyday that wouldn’t blow a crowd away. Just listening to it, you can imagine people singing back the lyrics to “Born To Be A Rover”, dancing arm in arm and whirling in circles to “Farewell”, waving their arms to “Together As One” and simply going punch-the-air-wild to “One Fine Day”.
This isn’t the longest review I’ve ever written, but that’s partly as I want to get back to listening to Heyday. An album that’s more than just musically top-notch, it’s fun.
Heyday is out now.