Flogging Molly and The Interrupters Rock Through Columbus, Ohio REVIEW+PHOTOS: Floggy Molly, The Interrupters, Tiger Army & The Skints at Kemba Live! 6/25/22
LOS ANGELES, CA- Saturday, June 25th was a day of firsts for me. I covered my first show on the east side of the country after relocating from California. My first time in Columbus, Ohio. My first time at Kemba LIVE!, a cool open-air venue. My first experience with 3/4’s of this amazing lineup. Flogging Molly and The Interrupters is one of the most highly anticipated tours of the summer.
Opening the night of this 4 band lineup with an eclectic array of music genres that went from reggae to psychobilly to ska to punk-fueled Celtic rock were The Skints, a band from the UK. Pooling together all their musical influences, The Skints have concocted a distinct medley of roots reggae, punk rock, ska, and hip hop, giving us a groovy, danceable set. Tiger Army, the one band I have seen previously, followed with their own brand of non-stop raging, steamrolling, psychobilly set the tone for the rest of the evening.
The Interrupters took the stage before sunset and broke the party atmosphere wide open.
Led by Aimee Interrupter’s raspy voice, along with the Bivona brothers Kevin, Justin, Jesse, and their keyboard/trombone player, Billy Kottage, The Interrupters’ ska-punk blend will blow you away. They stomped on the accelerator and kicked off their set with “Take Back The Power” and never looked back.
One thing I look for in live bands is genuine interactions and affection between band members and their audience. They accomplished this repeatedly with sing-along after sing-along, dancing, and genuinely including the crowd with a family vibe throughout their set.
Along the way, they played fan favorites like “She Got Arrested,” “Family;” “In The Mirror” and “Anything Was Better,” two tracks off their upcoming album In The Wild; they played with a mash-up of incomplete covers of songs by Bad Religion, The Offspring, and NOFX, before giving an awesome cover of Bad Religion’s “Sorrow.”
The sun had already set before They closed their set with fan favorite, “She’s Kerosene.” Even after an hour-long set, I felt ready for more. They were energetic and welcoming, and had me asking myself, “why did you wait so long to see them?”
Their new album, “In the Wild” is due out in August.
The sun had set during the latter half of the Interrupters explosive set. Rain clouds loomed in the sky as we waited during the set change. The stage crew hurriedly covered the monitors and other gear with plastic.
The lights went black as cheers swelled for Flogging Molly. As the band emerged on stage a single white light illuminating center stage. He wasted no time in engaging the crowd before a single note was played. They opened
With “Drunken Lullabies” and plowed through nearly a dozen songs including “Devil’s Dance Floor,” “If I Ever Leave This World Alive,” and more.
Frontman Dave King was at the top of his game, simultaneously playing guitar, spreading his arms wide in welcoming air hugs, and dancing around. His voice has never sounded better. The storm seemed to hold back until the last two songs of their set and it only began to drizzle as if they were giving the band room to play their full set. It did however come down full force only after I had reached my car to head home. Even so, the energy from the band nor the crowd ever subsided.
Like The Interrupters, Flogging Molly is also a kickass live band. The crowd sang along to almost every word, even to the new song “These Times Have Got Me Drinking,” from their soon-to-be-released new album, “Anthem” due out in September.
The tour was shortly interrupted after this show as Dave tested positive for COVID and the remaining bands carried on for a few shows without Flogging Molly. Now back in full swing, it finishes out dates through the July 4th weekend, a short break through August, and back again in September. If they’re near you or even if you have to drive a bit, go catch this show. You won’t be disappointed.