Listen to the new album from ‎Jekalyn Carr!
Listen to the new album from ‎Jekalyn Carr!

JFH Staff Review




Flatfoot 56
Jungle Of The Midwest Sea



Artist Info: Discography
Album length: 14 tracks: 39 minutes, 56 seconds
Street Date: May 15, 2007


An Irishman walks into a punk club with a mandolin. Generally this sort of statement is followed by off-color cultural references, some dissembling, and finally a punch line something like, "That's not my mandolin, it's a rabbit!" After which, no one laughs and there's some awkward moments before someone finally just turns the music up and hopes the joke-teller will go away. Flatfoot 56 has a released their sophomore project, and that's no joke. Chicago's own Celtic punk ensemble caught me completely off guard by putting out a record with a sound I absolutely loved.

Jungle of the Midwest Sea is a 14-track, boot-stomping, fist-pumping, pit-moshing Irish sing-a-long McStravaganza that gets the olde blood a-flowing. Fans of the Dropkick Murphys and similar Celt-punk bands will definitely appreciate the loud uproarious heartiness of this style of music. It blends your standard 3- and 4- chord punk songs with snappy rhythms and traditional instruments like the mandolin, bagpipes, Irish whistles, and of all things, a bouzouki. This music is meant to be about brotherhood and is full of real heart and vigor; each song is inspired and meaningful, drawing from the lads' experiences growing up in Chicago, Bible stories like Cain's murder of Abel, the parable of the sower, and the story of Stephen.

"The Galley Slave" opens the album with a head-bobbing tune about a slave rowing a boat in bondage for being a Christian, a powerful song with a great melody that's really just an intro. It flows nicely into the first three jump-up-and-down songs, of which "City On A Hill" really stands out as a grave warning to posers, in a spiritual sense (Have I mentioned you can mosh to all of the above?). "Hoity Toity" mixes a fun reeling rhythm with some more serious words about being true to yourself. The final cut, "Same Ol' Story" lulls everything to a calm with something that sounds like a Southern Baptist hymn.

Some might say that Jungle of the Midwest Sea is too repetitive, with little variety of style, but it's a short album, it's a punk album, and it's made no claims to musical virtuosity or to being the Great New Thing. It's meant to be taken like one big deep breath, all at once, all or nothing. The Celtic sound gives it a gravity as well as a joviality and lends to it the weight of all the Irish sentiment and ennui that parallels everything punk music has always been about.

Having said that, not everyone is going to like this. This is likely one of those 'love it or hate it' albums for most people. I for one and am a fan of both punk music and Irish traditional music, and I found this album to be a very enjoyable listen. It's energizing, it's uplifting, it's got a lot to say in a short time without beating you over the head with pontifical proselytizing (which is a fancy way of saying it ain't preachy.)

So don your scally caps, raise your voices, and lift your pints* and enjoy Jungle of the Midwest Sea. It's got a quality of fun, rock, and spirituality that doesn't come along very often in the harder side of Christian music.

- Review date: 5/17/07, written by Sean Lex

*of milk


Listen to the New EP from Life UNLTD!

 


. Record Label: Flicker Records
. Album length: 14 tracks: 39 minutes, 56 seconds
. Street Date: May 15, 2007
. Buy It: Amazon.com

  1. The Galley Slave
  2. Carry 'Em Out
  3. Loaded Gun
  4. City On A Hill
  5. Bright City
  6. Hoity Toity
  7. Pay Me A Dollar
  8. Chinatown Jail Break
  9. Warriors
  10. Cain
  11. Ollie Ollie
  12. Standin' For Nothing
  13. Jungle Of The Midwest Sea
  14. Same Ol' Story
spacer Click For Audio Sample   Click For Song Lyrics
Click For Audio Sample   Click For Song Lyrics
Click For Audio Sample   Click For Song Lyrics
Click For Audio Sample   Click For Song Lyrics
Click For Audio Sample   Click For Song Lyrics
Click For Audio Sample   Click For Song Lyrics
Click For Audio Sample   Click For Song Lyrics
Click For Audio Sample   Click For Song Lyrics
Click For Audio Sample   Click For Song Lyrics
Click For Audio Sample   Click For Song Lyrics
Click For Audio Sample   Click For Song Lyrics
Click For Audio Sample   Click For Song Lyrics
Click For Audio Sample   Click For Song Lyrics
Click For Audio Sample   Click For Song Lyrics

 

 

go to main Album review page
go to Album review archive

 


(JFH Sponsor Spot)

 

 

           
Listen to the New EP from Life UNLTD!

Search JFH



This Tuesday, October 27, 2020
Heath McNease Notes, Volume 1 - EP (independent)


This Wednesday, October 28, 2020
Andy Mineo Always in a Rush (ft. Mez) - Single [Reach]
Anthony Sallee and Phil Keaggy Blackbird - Single (independent)


This Friday, October 30, 2020
for KING & COUNTRY A Drummer Boy Christmas [Curb/Word]
Caitie Hurst At All Times - EP [Centricity]
JAG The Longest Road (Remastered) [Girder]
JAG The Only World In Town (Remastered) [Girder]
JAG Fire In the Temple (Remastered) [Girder]
Kings Kaleidoscope Power Perfect EP [Rainbow Records]
Resistance Resistance EP [Integrity]
Social Club Misfits Feared By Hell [Capitol]
True Strength The Mighty Hand of Yahweh [Roxx]
Matthew West Live Before the World Shut Down - EP [Story House]


Next Monday, November 2, 2020
Manic Drive (Vol.1) EP (independent)


Next Friday, November 6, 2020
Cross Point Music Jesus Is King - Single [Centricity]
Open Heaven Triumph [DREAM]
Selah Step Into My Story [3Cre8tive]
Joel Vaughn Louder Than The Lies [DREAM]


For all release dates, click here!
 



Listen to the new single from Anthony Sallee!


  • Image Mulan
    PG-13 (Digital HD)


Enter to win the Lord of the Rings Trilogy 4K SteelBook!