"Turn Up That Dial" Tour 2022
Wiener Stadthalle, Hall D
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In good times and bad times, we turn to music. Our record collections and playlists carry us through any hardships, adversities, and trouble the world throws our way. When you press play, the pain just goes away. It’s why we listen in the first place.
And that’s what Dropkick Murphys set out to do - and definitely accomplished - on the new album „Turn Up That Dial“. They boot in the front door of 2021 with a record that punches you square in the face and says, in the words of Ken Casey, “Get up, get out of those sweatpants you’ve been wearing for the last year...better times are ahead – LET’S F-in’ GO!!”.
With Special Guests: The Interrupters
“On this record, the overall theme is the importance of music, and the bands that made us who we are“, states Casey. “We just hope it takes people’s minds off their troubles. We’re so fortunate and grateful to be in the position to share a little happiness in our own way. Our gratitude levels are off the chart. 25 years ago, somebody bet me 30 bucks I couldn’t form a band with three weeks’ notice to open for his band. As kids, we’d never been out of New England and here we are—we’ve made ten records and have been all over the globe. If there’s a message to this album, it’s ‘put your fist up and play it loud.“
That became something of a mantra for the guys in the studio. Even before the shit hit the fan with the global pandemic, the boys wanted to “make a really fun and upbeat record”, according to Casey. They’d just completed a marathon tour cycle behind 11 Short Stories of Pain & Glory—which boldly stared down the opiate epidemic—and made a conscious decision to uplift. By the top of 2020, they had written and recorded a little more than half of the music for what would become „Turn Up That Dial“. So they hit the road in Europe armed with a raucous new single, “Smash Shit Up.” The band shot two music videos the day before the final show of the tour. All signs pointed to 2020 being maybe the most enjoyable and memorable year of the band’s career yet.
We all know what happened next. Touring ceased. Cities shut down. Way too many of our brothers and sisters lost their lives.
Hunkered down at home, Dropkick Murphys staved off depression by leaning on the music and leaning on each other. As they have since 1996, they began throwing down rousing anthems – songs that span the gap from punk rock ragers to melodic, Irish-inspired tunes.
Dropkick Murphys steamrolled their way through the album with a string of anthems, starting with the title track. “Turn Up That Dial” lays bare the whole point of the collection in the first verse:
You’re my inspiration, you got something to say
Now turn up that dial ‘til it takes me away
...and the chorus drives the point home…
We took on the world
With these songs in our ear
They told us to listen
But you were all we could hear
It’s easy to imagine the band members thinking back to their teenage selves: blasting The Clash on a Walkman, feeling their favorite bands were sticking up for them more than anyone else in the world. This album is fueled by those bands that captured the energy of the streets, distilled life’s complexities to raging choruses, and were constant companions.
On the other end of the spectrum, the band closes the album with a tribute to Al’s late father Woody Barr on the tearful “I Wish You Were Here“. „Turn Up That Dial“ waves goodbye with accordion, bagpipes, and a drum march.
In the end, „Turn Up That Dial“ is a self-fulfilling prophecy for Dropkick Murphys. “We’ve all done plenty of lamenting, so the main goal was to keep this fun”, Casey leaves off. “The darker the times got, the harder we fought to uplift with this music. Whatever we’re potentially giving to fans, trust me, they’re giving it to us tenfold. Now, turn up that fucking dial.”
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