Flogging Molly – ‘Til The Anarchy’s Restored (EP Review)

Is it an EP or a single with two b-sides? Frankly, dear, we don’t really give a damn! However you classify it, Flogging Molly’s latest—which arrived on March 10, 2023, thanks to Rise Records—presents three solid tracks that leave the listener feeling warm and fuzzy for some Irish anarchy.

Which is really no shock when its authors are world-renowned Celtic Punks with a penchant for storytelling. From 2000’s Swagger to 2022’s Anthem, the six-piece has spent nearly three decades knitting social truth into swill-worthy jigs or, if you prefer, “drunken lullabies.” It is their signature, one that has allowed these eclectic musicians to share stages with equally diverse artists, from The Chieftains to Motörhead.

So, for a band this adept at embracing their inner unicorn, ‘Til The Anarchy’s Restored is a little underwhelming. In fact, it is its namesake, “’Til the Anarchy’s Restored,” that is the clear highlight of the collection, a brand new semi-acoustic offering from the anthemic titans. While it goes without saying that this newest creation upholds the band’s exceptionally diverse musicianship, for all its calming moods, it is another folk song for those in search of an authentic experience in a world draped in cruel facades. No more, no less.

This is far from saying that Flogging Molly—Dave King (vocals, guitar, bodhrán), Bridget Regan (fiddle, tin whistle), Dennis Casey (guitar), Spencer Swain (banjo, mandolin), Matt Hensley (accordion, piano, concertina), Nathen Maxwell (bass), and Mike Alonso (drums, percussion)—is a disappointment or less than on the EP. With the help of long-time collaborator Steve Albini (Nirvana, Pixies), they zhuzh up the experience with crisp live, in-studio recordings of two fan favorites: “Drunken Lullabies” and “What’s Left of the Flag.”

In the times before streaming, the ‘Til The Anarchy’s Restored EP might have been a bit of a miss for anyone not dedicated to owning everything Flogging Molly. In our modern times, it amounts to a free smile while you await something more substantial from the band. Hopefully, by then, the anarchy will last a little longer and burn a little brighter. For these conflicted reasons, Cryptic Rock gives Flogging Molly’s pseudo-EP 3 out of 5 stars.

Flogging Molly – ‘Til the Anarchy’s Restored EP / Rise Records (2023)

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