The six-piece band The Pirate Party Brigade comprised of Adam Montgomery (vocals), Tom Drysdale (guitar), Matt Powell (guitar), Phillippe Jackson (bass), Luc Pallot (trombone) and Josh Gillard (drums) has a name that is indicative of the kind of music they play. Their unique blend of ska, rock and gypsy folk is borderline perfect party music you want to hear in a live environment. I would argue that the music that The Pirate Party Brigade make beats the pants off the majority of EDM when to comes to getting people to lose their inhibitions and dance in a way they would never want to see played back on someone’s iPhone.
Their recent release Filthy Bilge while probably not as cool as having the band in your living room does an excellent job bringing the energy to you anytime you want it. The album from a production and aesthetic perspective is exceptional. It’s obvious within the first minute whoever was behind the board knew what they were doing and probably had quality gear reserved for those who are serious about engineering.
I have to admit a lot of ska sounds similar between the predictable horns and upward strummed guitar chords. The Pirate Party Brigade while having elements of ska certainly know how to keep things fresh by changing things up quite often. The songs do work together but consistently make slight deviations such as the more rock sounding tune to some that have a Persian flare. There were a number of times I was reminded of The Dropkick Murphys, which was fine by me.
Up first is “So Beige” which contains heavy distorted guitars and is reminiscent of early ‘90s punk acts like Rancid and even NOFX to some extent. The song has an ample amount of energy as it ascends with guitar notes and flourishing horns. “Working For Your Greed” is a fast paced song that is grounded in rock. It has some attitude yet still contains plenty of levity somehow.
Lyrically, the songs follow loose narratives but also contain ambiguity. The words avoid tropes and it seemed obvious to me that there was thought behind what was being said. While we are talking about lyrics one of the most infectious vocal melodies belongs to “Before The Crows.” The band closes with “Winning” which starts off a bit more reverently but eventually turns into a party.
Filthy Bilge is a great album all around. None of the songs feel like fillers and the energy this band has is contagious. Recommended