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8 out of 10
Most people would probably judge Flogging Molly on just their live reputation - in my experience, it's always a happy occasion, with shout-along anthems, Irish jig pits instead of moshing, and plenty of drunken fun. But there is also a more subdued side to them, as shown by previous output like 'The Son Never Shines (On Closed Doors)', 'Far Away Boys', and 'The Wrong Company' - the tunes that you could say are designed for that last whiskey of the night, when reminiscing over the follies of youth. Their latest single 'Float' sits somewhere in between these two camps.
It opens with just an acoustic guitar and Dave King's lilting vocals, with the lyrics addressing those who just have to get on with life, no matter what is thrown at them (with several variations on the phrase "Drink/Listen/Breath/Dream, it's all you can"). A morose accordion melody running through most of the tune also adds to the generally gloomy, rain-sodden atmosphere. But as the song progresses, the rest of the band pitch up, adding layers of instrumentation and volume, but not ramping up the speed as they would with the dancefloor numbers, until it ends as what would probably be a drunken chorus-line down the pub.
It may not be what everyone is looking for, or indeed expecting from the band, but it can't hurt for you to spare it five minutes of your time, especially when combined with the video, a lovingly rendered piece in the same stop-motion claymation style that Tool have previously tried to monopolise. Have a look over here next time you've got a glass of Bushmills to savour - http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=R-PmyAfQ5xY.