Ye Banished Privateers – First Night Back in Port (Napalm)

Thursday, 27th July 2017
Rating: 7.5/10

Rewind two decades ago and the whole “pirate” thing was a joke. Founded and subsequently cornered by Hamburg metal outfit Running Wild, “pirate metal” was a one-band pursuit for such a significant period of time that you’d have to think RW main dude Rolf Kasparek was ready to ride (or sail) off into the sunset without anyone to join him. Alas, Alestorm and Swashbuckle happened, along with a few less significant bands who could be considered cast-offs. (See what we did there?) Realizing the need for jolly, foot-stamping numbers, Austria’s Napalm Records saw fit to add Sweden’s Ye Banished Privateers to their roster.

Essentially a pirate folk band (no metal, sorry gang), Ye Banished Privateers aren’t as much of a novelty as they are primed and ready to be that band who pops up in a major motion picture rocking some kind of rollicking, bar-room brawling scene. As you would expect, there’s plenty of mead and good times flowing when “A Night at the Black Cat” and “A Declaration of Independence” get moving, complete with raucous male-female vocal interplay and plenty of folk instrumentation. Of course, you can’t help but think how a song like “I Dream of You” would sound if it got all metal’d-up (calling Alestorm?), but the tribal pounding of “We Are Ye Banished Privateers” provides enough momentum.

As Running Wild discovered over the course of their reign in the ’80s and early ’90s, authentic pirate metal will only get you so far (read: Europe.) This seems like the best destination for Ye Banished Privateers, who, on First Night Back in Port, provide a gaggle of happy-go-lucky, unfettered pirate folk cuts that should resonate across the Seven Seas.

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