Review and Photo By Gideon Greenbaum-Shinder FULL PHOTO GALLERY HERE From Aprils Vandala Magazine – READ MORE REVIEWS HERE
Put simply, ‘The Mahones’ are a Canadian institution. They play dynamic punk-rock laden with Irish counterparts and a little old school classical Celtic drizzled on top. So, it is no coincidence that ‘The Mahones’ were formed on a St. Patrick’s Day over 20 years ago. Not only is it a day that every Irish person should celebrate, but it is an event that calls for a double commemoration when ‘The Mahones’ are involved. Therefore there is nothing like a St. Patrick’s day show with ‘The Mahones’. It was a beer spilling, oi screaming, green wearing good time.
Most people there where clearly determined to forget that it was a Monday night and did so with ease, abetted by a little liquid courage, as is tradition. The crowd got a little pushy and punchy once the mosh started to take effect, of course, I would expect nothing less from a St. Patrick’s Day show. The one disappointment for me was that a certain section of the crowd remained quite reserved and ultimately stayed sitting down throughout the majority of ‘The Mahones’ set. Of course those of us who where in the thick of it had no time to look back as we where completely enveloped in the electric stage presence of the power couple Finny and Katie Mconnell.
‘The Mahones’ are no nostalgic reproduction of the genre. Finny Mconnell formed the band in 1990. As the main songwriter Finny combines his obvious love of classic punk rock and his pride in his own Irish culture. He also takes on the role of lead Vocalist and plays a mean guitar. The beautiful Katie “KaBoom” McConnell plays a raging storm of arpeggios on the accordion and screams fervent backup vocals. Dom “The Bomb” Whelan was thrashing out epic grooves on the drum kit.” Drunken Dirty Bastard” was definite favorite of mine live.
This show also had a wonderful, distinctive moment where Katie got to play a song with her father rocking out and doing back up vocals on stage with her. It also marked a rare Toronto specialty where non-touring member Michael O’Grady, who plays a mean tin whistle, took the stage with the band for the whole set. O’Grady was on stage the whole night as he also happened to be playing with Freeman Dre and the Kitchen party who started off this raucous night. ‘The Mahones’ are truly one of the hardest working bands that I have had the pleasure of meeting, they are also simply relentless both on and off stage. When it comes to putting in time with their fans or keeping up with their grueling tour schedule for the last 20 years, they never seem to lapse.
‘The Mahones’ have over ten albums, in fact, it was their tenth album, ‘The Black Irish’ that gained them international acclaim and skyrocketed them to their current worldwide cult status. They have just released a live album recorded in Italy and have plans to release a double album later in 2014. In other words this band is twenty four years young and they are clearly still building up steam.
Catch one of Canadas hardest working bands live and stay tunned for their upcoming album “The Hunger & The Fight in 2014″. Show dates and more at: