When the Dropkick Murphys blasted out of south Boston nearly ten years ago, few would've guessed that working-class punks with progressive politics and a bagpipe fetish would ever rise from underground infamy to (relatively) mainstream success. But that's just what this band has managed to pull off with a balls-to-the-wall ethos that's conspicuously evident on each of the 23 tracks on its second singles collection (subtitled B-Sides, Covers, Comps & Other Crap). Little-heard originals like the ferocious "On the Attack" and "Soundtrack to a Killing Spree" underscore the group's well-documented hardcore roots, just as Irish-themed anthems like "The Wild Rover," a traditional pennywhistle romp, affably meet expectations. But what's most revealing about this comp are the cover tunes -- which in addition to predictable homages to old-school punk heroes (Gang Green, Sham 69) and, of course, Pogues founder Shane MacGowan -- include solidly rendered versions of classics by rock gods AC/DC, Motörhead, and Credence Clearwater Revival. Clearly, it's the Murphys' willingness to go their own way that's earned them due respect.
Get the Music Newsletter
Keep your thumb on the local music scene each week with music news, trends, artist interviews and concert listings. We'll also send you special ticket offers and music deals.