Dropkick Murphys- Stage AE Pittsburgh, PA Mar. 8,2014

Reviewed by Skyanne Fisher

Pittsburgh’s Stage AE was engulfed by a sea of kilts Saturday night for the highly anticipated Dropkick Murphys show. Boston’s Celtic punk bad boys put on a generous 26-song set to a sold out crowd. With Skinny Lister and Lucero opening, it was clear that one of the goals of the evening was an end to sobriety.

Promptly at 8, UK based folk rockers Skinny Lister came out and kept it short and sweet with perennial favorites Colours, Rollin’ Over and Bold As Brass. Dan Heptinstall and Michael Camino crowdsurfed over a surprisingly wide demographic.

The slightly better known alt-country outfit, Lucero drank right along with the crowd. Perhaps in deference to the headliners, Ben Nichols abruptly exited in the middle of a song with  “Dropkick Murphys are up next! Thanks for the show!”

After a quick set change, Beantown’s infamous band opened with a scorching version of Boys are Back. The already overcrowded venue seemed to grow even smaller as the main floor became split between a mosh pit and dance area while the rest of the crowd calmly sang from the upper level.

With rare pauses between songs, they burned through 26 numbers including the surprising Almanac Singers cover Which Side are You On? and the newer Rose Tattoo. A DKM show is as much an interactive experience as can be anticipated. By the time they closed with the 70s medley Takin’ Care of Business/We’re an American Band, the crowd had turned into a large, rambunctious party; something the Dropkick Murphys are no stranger to hosting.

The encore began with Kiss Me; I’m Shitfaced during which the band invited audience members on-stage. They eventually closed with Citizen C.I.A.

After a solid 90 minutes, enraptured fans left the venue dancing, singing, and, of course, drunk.