by Phranc of A.S.P and Pegasus
Yo, folks!!! I'm gonna tell you s.th. about folk-punk and "The Pogues". The term folk-punk has been used for some time now: it describes a type of music which goes back to cultural roots and which, at the same time, is mixed with the sound of punk rock. The best example of this kind of music is played by a band called "The Pogues". (A 'pogue' is the Gaelic word for 'kiss'.) This Irish-English band plays Irish folk music with a touch of punkrock. And young punk rockers, among others, seem to love it.
"The Pogues" are a seven-member band (six men and one woman) who sing and play a mix of traditional instruments - accordion, mandolin, banjo etc. - and modern instruments - electric bass and rock-style drum. The lead-singer is Shane MacGowan, a young London Irishman. He's also the composer of most of the Pogues' songs and folk melodies. Most of Mr MacGowan's music, like the folk songs they imitate,tell stories. And like many traditional songs, they deal with love and hard times. Unfortunately, the words are not too distinct on their records. What really sets the Pogues apart, though, is that they don't actually play rock at all. Their rhythms are strictly Irish folky - and so their fans are rockers through and and through.
It was the Pogues who provided the soundtrack music to the film "Sid and Nancy", the story about Sid Vicious of the "Sex Pistols", the most punk group of all in the 1970s, and his girlfriend Nancy. One of the songs, 'Haunted by the Ghost', sounds very like the Pretenders. Some years ago, the Pogues did a gig at the Ritz, a celebrated rock palace in Greenwich Village, New York - one of their stops on a U.S.tour. It was a true spectacle. The Pogues are popular because, firstly, their type of music is new and very funny, and secondly, the band has a lot of raw energy. They are giving music lovers something different. While other rock bands, including the most famous of them all, the Beatles, have derived their sound from Afro-American music, the Pogues have taken a different route.
At the end of this article, I wanna give ya a tip: If ya wanna buy a record of "The Pogues", than buy "If I should fall from grace with god"!!! I think, it's the most powerful LP of them. Don't buy their new album "Peace and Love"!!! It's too slow, it's SHIT!
This article originally appeared in the Amiga diskmagazine "Zine #4" by Brainstorm 1990.
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Addresses and other contact information were only valid when this magazine was originally published, in april of 1990.
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