I listened to Flogging Molly’s Swagger on the commute today. I know this is an eight-year-old album. But it’s new to me. And I am enamored. It has been a while since a piece of music has grabbed me like this band. I think it appeals to my born-fightin’ heart or to having seen Once, which everyone should see because it is lovely. Regardless. I really really like this band.

Hat tip to Fast ‘n’ Bulbous, useful smart music reviews. True, any “best artists of the oughts” list that does not include Marnie Stern is missing the boat, but these folks generally do a pretty good job.

By the way: Check out Weird Al interviewed in today’s Washington Post Express. The interview, purportedly conducted via e-mail, is virtually unintelligible, it’s true. But he does say this:

Along with all the satires and dis tracks, the curly-haired bandleader and accomplished accordionist has also recorded at least one homage the nine-minute-long “Genius in France,” a dis track that was aimed at an entire nation, “was really a labor of love,” he writes. “I’m a big [Frank] Zappa fan, and I wanted to do it right.”

Yankovic’s songwriting method was appropriately nerdy: “I started by going through Frank’s catalog, focusing on the early ’70s listening carefully and making notes about every little lyrical or musical nuance that seemed uniquely Zappa.”

Interesting since Zappa’s native influences ’50s bubblegum r&b and Yankovic’s well, polka are so very different. But Yankovic is clearly a “does humor belong in music” kind of guy.

For you youngsters, no this is not a sendup of INXS.

It is a sendup of Bob Dylan.

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