The Tossers CD review [Thick]

Music Reviews
The Tossers CD review [Thick]
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Mar 25, 2003, 05:33

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THE TOSSERS Purgatory CD

These Celtopunk upstarts from Chicago have always been notable for their political instincts: unlike most post-MacGowan whiskey poets, Tossers frontman Tony Duggins is just as likely to write lyrics decrying global corporate piracy and greedy capitalist swine as pine for Mother Ireland. Of course, previous albums were helped by the fact that the rest of the band juiced their acoustic trad licks with mob-strength Oi! singalongs and the riled-up energy of the righteous. But on Purgatory, The Tossers have scaled back some of the punkier elements in favor of a more restrained, traditional Celtic sound. This has the unfortunate result of sometimes reducing Duggins' wordy, tangled screeds against corruption to mere shopping lists of radical agitation, set to the melancholy plucking of a mandolin or banjo. The more intimate, emotional laments work better, then, breathing easier. Perhaps future releases will see Duggins move further in this interpersonal, rather than international, direction—a preferable development if The Tossers maintain this folkier approach. But if they want to rattle the barricades with protest anthems, they need to re-lace the boots and kick it. [Thick]

-J Graham

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