Skip to content

Punk Rock & Hockey, Part II (Dropkick Murphys)

December 29, 2009

I was going to wait on this band until a later date, but since I have found out they will be performing at the Winter Classic, I find now as timely as ever.

If hockey ever had a soundtrack, it might be the Dropkick Murphys. It is just something about their music that makes the band sound perfect with the sport, especially if it happens to be a Bruins game. If you aren’t a big fan of punk rock, but that name sound familiar it’s probably because you’ve heard this song.

DKM has a flow and sound to their music that includes some traditional sounds with an uptempo beat and rough gang vocals. It isn’t surprising that their style fits in perfectly in an Original Six city. When you go to watch a game in an Original Six arena there’s a sense of the past with a fast-paced game and generally a raucous crowd on hand. As they say in their ode to their beloved Boston hockey team, “Old-time hockey, bar the door.”

So many connections can be made between the culture of hockey and the general makeup of the band. Dropkick Murphys is a celtic-punk band and many know the Irish for their gritty, hard work ethic. At the same time, those qualities are what hockey fans desire from their players. DKM reminds me of music made by factor workers from Irish neighborhoods and to a certian extent there is a bit of “OI!” punk in their sound. It makes me think of a group of men just off their shift that stop at the local bar to get a drink and to watch the Bruins on TV. Men that work hard for their money and then want to spend their hard earned dollars watching a team that reflects their ethics.

Dropkick Murphys even has a song where this scenario is referenced to a certian extent. In their song “Caps and Bottles” the lyrics focus on an adult man looking back on his longings as a boy to want to grow up and hang out with the men at the bar. Meanwhile, parts of a Bruins broadcast are in the background of the song.

That’s not to say punk bands set out to impress hockey fans or visa versa, but it’s not surprising that there’s a connection between the two when they share so many similar values at their collective cores.

Sometimes when I write another part of this series I wonder if I am trying to find links instead of them actually being there. Yet so many punk bands reference hockey and I know plenty of punk kids that love the sport. Hell, there’s even a genre dedicated to the mixing of the two in the form of “Puck Rock.”

Although, there is no doubt that Dropkick Murphys and hockey are connected. Besides performing at the Winter Classic, Bruins’ games and other hockey games, the band has several songs in reference to the Bruins and the game in general. The song, “Time to Go” a song in tribute to the Boston Bruins with a chorus that goes:

Go! Go! Black and gold!
Old-time hockey, bar the door
Clear the track it’s all-out war
Light the lamp, throw a hit
Black and gold never quit
The barn is full, our team’s in town
So put ’em up boys, knock ’em out (knock ’em down)
Drop the puck, it’s time to go (time to go)

If that isn’t a wonderful tribute to your hometown team, I am quite confused what is.

Recommended listening:

Time to Go

I’m Shipping Up to Boston

The Warrior’s Code

The State of Massachusetts

Pipebomb on Landsdowne

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: