While I have Irish in my blood from ancestry, my knowledge of Irish slang and euphenisms is quite limited. From some scant research, in Irish Cork County slang, "sham" can refer simply to a man, a guy, like we say "dude" here in America. But in American English, sham can mean something is fake or a farce, not the real thing. Hmm. Make you wonder where I'm going with this.
The Shams intent is to be an American equivalent of an Irish melodic rock band, and several members are from Ireland. How authentic their sound is, is probably best left to the folks in Dublin, Cork, or Limerick. Not much of this type of music crosses my review desk.
Vocalist Sean Daly definitely has some Gaelic timbre in his voice, but he's rather predictable throughout. The music has that bounce of a jig whereby I can see a leprechan dancing about his pot-o-gold with a fifth of whiskey. The Shams also have a fiddler, sounding very cool in many songs. Not the least of which is Drinks Are One Me, my favorite song here. This song probably seals the deal. Having a drinking song definitely makes The Shams an authentic Irish band. What's that old saying? Oh yeah. "God invented whiskey to prevent the Irish from rulin the world."
Otherwise, most of the rest of the songs are generally good rockin' numbers with (vulgar) Sick To Death and Go On Home Boys the stand outs. One And All is slightly more subdued, but still has a good march to it, nice vocal harmonies, and that strong fiddle presence. Alternatively, Not Bothered, not so much. Additionally, the production is quite sharp giving clarity and crispness to every player and instrument. Overall, One And All is a fine start for The Shams. If Irish music that steers more toward rock than folk music is your thing, you'll enjoy this short EP.
One And All is a fine start for The Shams. If Irish music that steers more toward rock than folk music is your thing, you'll like this short EP.
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