TVD Live Shots:
Flogging Molly with Vandoliers and Russkaja at the Hollywood Palladium, 3/17

While we were away.Ed.

PHOTOS: JULIA LOFSTRAND | I didn’t know what to expect when I agreed to cover Flogging Molly at the Hollywood Palladium on Saint Patrick’s Day. “Are you into Flogging Molly?” I asked a guy next to me. “Seasonally,” he smiled.

Los Angeles based with most of its members from Detroit, Dublin-born guitarist/frontman Dave King is actually Irish. With their start as the resident Monday night band at LA’s Molly Malones, they’ve outgrown the bar band label and routinely sell-out large venues, even holding their own annual Salty Dog Caribbean Cruise featuring a line-up of legendary punk musicians. They are not a gimmicky Irish/punk band, but a group of talented musicians with a 20-year career who sound remarkable to this day.

I hold the same truth for the night’s two openers. The first, country-punk Texas natives Vandoliers—who go by a brand of “shithole country” as listed in their IG bio—sang a song about smoking cigarettes in the rain. They sounded great. The second opener, Russkaja—a polka-punk Slavic outfit with a metal undertone who hail from Vienna—brought lots of brass including a 100 year old tuba on stage. Drinks flying across the room, a fuck Putin message, and a cover of Avicii’s “Wake Me Up,” and I’d say that their set covered all the bases for the we are pacifists with no fucks given message they wanted to impart.

Flogging Molly pulled from their extensive catalogue of music and sang a version of Queen’s “We Will Rock You,” and “a song dedicated to the a great man of self, ME!,” King said before jumping into “Selfish Man.” I’m not sure if it was the final loosening of LA pandemic restrictions or the fact that most people in the venue had been drinking since 2:00 PM at the outdoor portion of this annual St. Patrick’s Day festival, or may it’s just the nature of this spunky band, but the crowd, a giant whirling dervish in kilts and colorful socks, was one of the largest mosh pits I’ve seen. It was a messy and ear deafening good time—and a reminder that life need not be taken so seriously.



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