You’re all thinking that this is a blog written by the members of Clover’s Revenge, the only band in our tiny genre (Irish Speed Folk!), and if you’ve been paying attention, you know the guys seriously love Irish punk and trad music.
So Duh. It’s Flogging Molly, right? Not so fast.
It’s actually an intriguing question: which is the better of two bands, from two different musical eras, from two different countries, with two entirely different fanbases?
First, Air Supply.
Air Supply is an Australian rock ballad group that saw its popularity balloon in 1980 with the release of its hit album Lost In Love. On that album were three North American top five hits including the hilariously and ubiquitously trite “All Out Of Love”, which, for a time, was the second most popular song in North America. The other two hits on that record were the title track, and another song that many middle aged people hum in the shower: “Every Woman In The World.”
1981 brought Air Supply another hit record, with The One That You Love (you may be sensing an ongoing theme to the band’s songs and lyrics). The title track on that record went all the way to #1 in North America. The other two tracks off of that 1981 record that spent time in the North American Top 5 include “Sweet Dreams” and “Here I Am.”
If you’re having a hard time remembering 1981, it’s the same year that Journey released their best album: Escape.
Air Supply facts we found especially entertaining.
- The band is fronted by Russell Hitchcock and Graham Russell, who met during a production of Jesus Christ, Superstar in 1975. So we essentially have Andrew Lloyd Webber to thank for Air Supply.
- They produced 17 studio albums
- They are HUGE in Japan, even now.
- Air Supply toured with Rod Steward, Chicago, and with Boz Scaggs
Next, Flogging Molly.
Flogging Molly is an Irish-American band that plays Irish punk rock music and Irish traditional music at precisely the same time. They are able to accomplish this incredible feat with seven instruments on stage. With punk rock and traditional Irish instrumentation, the band has its roots in Heavy Metal.
Back in the day, Flogging Molly frontman Dave King fronted a metal band called Fastway with ‘Fast’ Eddie Clark, of Motӧrhead. These guys released a single called ‘Say You Will’ on their self-titled debut album in 1983. Dave King wasn’t done with metal yet. He sang for another band called Katmandu, which featured Mandy Meyer, the guitarist from Krokus. These facts are important because they establish the band’s Badass Credentials.
Flogging Molly was King’s vision. He wanted to pair Irish traditional music with heavier punk rock. That was in 1991. The label basically told King, “No – no way – NO IRISH NEED APPLY” so he spent two years breaking his contract, and then founded Flogging Molly as an LA-based pub band.
In 1993, Flogging Molly released its first album: Alive Behind The Green Door. Since then, the band has published six more albums. While they’re all great, the best one (objectively, obviously) is Drunken Lullabies, which features amazing pub tunes including “Rebels of the Sacred Heart,” “Drunken Lullabies,” “Worst Day Since Yesterday” and “What’s Left of the Flag.” The most recent album is titled Life Is Good, and it is their first release since 2011.
Interesting facts about Flogging Molly:
- Dave is married to Bridget Regan, who plays fiddle in the band
- Matt Hensley, with his accordion accomplishments and accolades, was once a professional skateboarder in the 80’s and 90’s
- Along with Punk, Folk Punk, and Irish Punk Rock, Flogging Molly is also part of the obscure “Oi” category of music.
- Flogging Molly once had a trumpet player named Gary Schwindt.
So who’s better?
Duh. It’s Flogging Molly.
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