Review: Drink & the Devil

Rating: ★★★★☆
Genre: Contemporary Pirate Folk.
Rating: PG
Target Audience: Pirate music fans, particularly those who would enjoy traditional shanties with some extra “teeth”

Drink & the Devil, by There Be Pirates, is an album that begins absolutely perfectly. Storm-brewed winds are met with a steadily growing drum beat, and then a shanty-styled introductory male voice begins the opening lyrics to High Barbary. But then the song quickly launches into a charged mix of energized instrumentals and vocals. This is still High Barbary as you know it, but reenvisioned in such a way as to remain true to its roots, but fresh and virile. Continue reading

Review: Old New Orleans 3 Year Rum

Rating: ★★½☆☆

Back in 2006 I reviewed New Orleans Cane Amber Rum. Since that time, Cane Rum has been discontinued over apparent confusion between itself and 10 Cane Rum. In its place we now have Old New Orleans Rum, which I think is actually a much better label anyways as it not only highlights itself as being one of the few continental US rum distilleries, but in a pirate town ta boot 🙂

Now I would generally expect that in such cases, while the bottling has changed, the rum might not. My bottle of Cane Amber is long gone (I have a second, but refuse to break the seal for this review – sorry!), so I can’t really do a side-by-side comparison. I do recall Cane Amber as being rather more scotch-like than rummy, but this is really all that I have to go on.

In the bottle, Old New Orleans 3 Year Aged Rum is a nice, basic brownish amber. The bottle is clean and classy, and corked in the manner of all self-respecting rums (with a few exceptions.) To the nose, Old New Orleans smells of sweet sugar cane, vanilla, and just a hint of over-ripe fruit. It comes across as being light-bodied, and perhaps a little alcoholly. Continue reading

The Pirates Charles on the Radio…

Fun video, but Capt. Diggity looks entirely uncomfortable. I think the poor bloke has demonstrated that he would never have survived aboard a real pirate ship – I’m certain he pulled several muscles during this performance while restraining himself from dancing and flailing his arms about. This man definitely wasn’t built for cramped conditions.

The Pirates Charles on FHF 97.1 Free FM

Review: Raising Black Flags

Rating: ★★★½☆

Close your eyes and picture a pirate sitting on a beach. Let your brain relax and let the pirate be himself and watch what he does. Does he take a swig of rum? Start singing sea shanties to himself? Shout peculiar-yet-salty insults at whoever happens to walk by? Read from a book of poetry?

Odds are that final option isn’t one that sprung into your mind – pirates, as a rule, aren’t really considered to be history’s great poets, nor were they exactly patrons of the written arts. In fact, letters – save those of “marque” or “x” – were generally pretty useless to them. But this is probably because it wasn’t until 2008 that someone got around to collecting an anthology of pirate poetry. Had such a thing existed in the 1700’s, I’m sure many pirates would have taken their literary studies far more seriously. Continue reading

Review: Lafitte’s Return Vol. 3 and 4

Rating: ★★★★☆

Buy the CD – Volume 3
Buy the CD – Volume 4
Genre: Various. Ranges from traditional to metal to lounge. Seriously.
Rating: PG-13
Target Audience: This is perhaps the most universal collection of pirate music ever. If you love any aspect of the genre, these albums are for you.

It’s been roughly one year since PPNOM (that’s Pirates for the Preservation of New Orleans Music) released their intital Lafitte’s Return Albums Volumes 1 and 2. They were really the first of their kind – true compilations of pirate and maritime music from about as diverse a range of styles and artists imagineable. From traditional to PirateCore, pirate-dedicated artists to those taking a first stab at a pirate song, it really had much to offer just about anyone with an interest in the pirate music genres. Continue reading

Review: She Buccaneer

Rating: ★★★★☆

Let’s face it – it’s not exactly unheard of for a couple of folks to come up with the not-quite brilliant idea of, “Hey, let’s create a movie / comicbook / game / whatever starring a pirate chick with huge boobs – the plot will work itself out somehow, I’m certain.” And it’s for this reason that I’m always a tad skeptical when I see a cover that so prominently features a chesty she-pirate as the primary sales pitch.

I’m delighted to say that The Voyages of She Buccaneer is a comic that successfully dodges the above scenario. True, our heroine is quite the fetching lass with an ultra-healthy chest that constantly threatens to burst free of its scanty pirate-flag inspired captor, but the writers of the series wisely depend on sex-appeal far less than you might expect. Instead, The Voyages of She Buccaneer focus primarily on pirate action, exotic locals, and more than a little mysterious – if historically unlikely (though no more so than She Buccaneer’s attire) – supernatural elements. The artwork is attractive and vibrantly colored, and the content is surprisingly substantive, with a full mini-adventure per issue (commendable in these days when comics seem to be getting shorter and shorter.) Continue reading

Review: PiRATE PRiMiTiVE

Rating: ★★★½☆

It stands to reason that any pirate worth his or her salt will probably wear at least a little bit of jewelry from time to time. Generally this would mean either wearing some gold and silver pretties that were stolen from a Spaniard, or perhaps some skull&crossbone ornamentation for those who like to flaunt their proclivity for plundering. But what about the third option? That which is born of sailors spending their time on beaches in the Caribbean? Jewelry derived from the local beads of wood and glass combined with a swab’s natural talent for knot work? This is the question, and PiRATE PRiMiTiVE would appear the answer. Continue reading