The family effort Flatfoot 56 with brothers Tobin, Justin, and Kyle Balwinkel, can trace their roots back to the Southside of Chicago much like the Tossers. With Odd Boat, the band is on technically their seventh album since 2000 although most know of only the five releases since 2004’s Knuckles Up, which served as my introduction to Flatfoot 56’s brand of infectious celtic punk rock. I can still remember the first time seeing them live at Cornerstone Festival…the energy and passion was infectious and in subsequent years, catching the special late-night theme shows at Cornerstone was a highlight of the festival even for those not big fans of the music. Following Knuckles Up in 2007 was Journey of the Midwest Sea and then in 2010, Black Thorn came out and the band’s exposure grew immensely, leading even to things like having a song featured on Sons of Anarchy. Toil followed in 2012 and for Odd Boat, the band chose to go the independent route and went to Atlas Studios in Chicago to work with Matt Allison.
Chicago Celtic punks Flatfoot 56 have been at it for over 15 years now, and they’ll release their seventh album “Odd Boat” on April 28 via Sailor’s Grave Records. The band recently released ‘Penny’ from the upcoming album, a rager fleshed out by some nice Celtic instrumentation with lovely guest vocals from Il Neige to balance out Tobin Bawinkel’s gruff rasp.
“‘Penny’ is a look at the way that we, as people, often consider ourselves unworthy of a second chance, while all the while it is staring us in the face, begging us to notice,” says Tobin. The song can be streamed below.
Flatfoot 56 will set sail aboard Flogging Molly’s Salty Dog Cruise in celebration of St. Patrick’s Day (though it’s actually the weekend before St. Patrick’s Day). They also have a bunch of West Coast dates. All dates are listed below.