The Dirges
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The Dirges


Band Folk Punk


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This band has not uploaded any videos



"Recent myspace review"

Here's a recent review from Shite'n'Onions Dot com
"The Dirges - I'll admit, this is the reason I felt the need to review all these bands I heard on Myspace. You seriously need to check The Dirges out right now. To put it very blunt...They have a great fucking sound. In fact, if you decide to check out Molly Malones Pub in Hollywood. (Of Flogging Molly fame) You'll probably see The Dirges up on stage playing some tunes. They are more or less, Molly Malones "weekday house band". Speaking of Flogging Molly, a member of The Dirges, (Francis DeAngelo) sang backup vocals on their last album. They also opened up for Spider Stacy/Filthy Theivin' Bastards in L.A. a few months back. Just what does this band sound like? Here's a description form the band: "The Clash meets Van Morrison in a Irish pub. They all leave, go to Shane MacGowans house for a few pints and ALL HELL BREAKS LOOSE!" I honestly think they sound better than that description, but what do I know! Reminds me of a young Van Morrison fronting The Low & Sweet Orchestra. Look for a big ol' review on Shite'n'Onions soon! Consider this as a quick teaser. Have I mentioned great fucking sound yet?" or

- Shite n onions

"The Dirges’ Bittersweet Melodies"

As their woebegone name would hint, the Dirges perform bittersweet, beer-hoisting original tunes that evoke their Irish-American roots. But as singer/songwriter Fran DeAngelo explains, there is more to the Dirges’ name than meets the ear.

When DeAngelo and cohort “Tall Pete” Mathus first teamed back in 2001, they composed a pair of tunes entitled “Stuytown” and “Hattie Street”—songs inspired by the untimely deaths of mutual friends, including a buddy who died in the 9/11 attacks. When it came time for the duo to name their musical enterprise, DeAngelo and Mathus settled on a moniker that, like those two songs, would pay tribute to friends tragically lost.

“I came up with the name the Dirges, which is basically a funeral hymn,” DeAngelo says. “It keeps me (inspired). It reminds me what we’re doing all this for.”

That inspiration is apparent on the Dirges’ two recordings, the full-length CD When Laughing Got You Killed and the 2009 EP, “Widows Walk.” Featuring DeAngelo (vocals, guitar), Mathus (bass, vocals), Alicia Allen (guitar, mandolin, flute), Marc Strommer (lead guitar, lap steel), and Bill "Stuhlly" Brennenstuhl (drummer), the Dirges’ songs are firmly rooted in Irish folk and performed with a vein-popping punk intensity.

DeAngelo, who was raised in Schenectady, NY and currently lives in Los Angeles, says he enjoys writing about his surroundings. “I romanticize the image of the middle class kid living in Los Angeles. You know—drinking in bars, getting in fights, the tall fish that got away. But in between those songs are the true dirges.”

The Dirges are part of a budding traditionalist Irish-American rock movement including such hard-touring bands as Flogging Molly, Young Dubliners, Dirty Thieving Bastards and more. “It’s a very tight-knit scene,” DeAngelo says.

Within that scene, the Dirges appear to be emerging as stars. The band recently recorded songs for the upcoming film, Boondock Saints II: All Saints Day. The feature-length flick, a sequel to the 1999 indie cult favorite, hits theaters Friday, October 30.

“It’s a movie about these Irish hooligans starting trouble around town in the name of their father,” DeAngelo says with a laugh. “It’s the perfect movie for us.”

Written by Bruce Britt
- Oct 29th 2009

"The Dirges Album Review"

DIRGES, THE: "When Laughing Got You Killed: CD I’m going to go out on a limb and say this is the best Irish-American folk punk band I’ve heard since the Tossers. One of the things that put me off about this album during the first few listens—and that I’ve now come to see as a strength—is its diversity. Bands that draw on the Irish music have a rich vein of material to borrow from: mournful ballads, frenetic reels, and the madly poetic drinking songs. The Pogues set the standard, and with it, some well-defined parameters. The Dirges will have none of that. The Dirges’ approach to Irish music is to integrate into a larger sphere: folk, roots rock, and punk. The result is a richly textured album that continues to surprise after many, many listens. An extremely impressive debut. –Jim Ruland (Self-released,"
- 2008


When Laughing Got You Killed-LP
Widows Walk-Ep
Both for sale on iTunes and CDBaby



An aggressive folk/punk hybrid, The Dirges perform weekly at the legendary Molly Malones in Hollywood as well as various local venues. They've shared the stage with some of L.A.'s top bands including, Flogging Molly, Cranky George, The Filthy Thieving Bastards, and The Young Dubliners. Their live show can turn the most ardent music critic into a beer drinking dancing fool! Here's a little history:

In 2001, Francis and Pete found a four track underneath the tire wall of a friend's rent-a-wreck and started writing songs. After many raucous all-nighters, they decided to round up some friends who could play and The Dirges were formed. Stuytown and Hattie Street are two of the first songs Fran and Pete penned. Both of which are inspired by the tragic deaths of good friends. The Dirges were so named in tribute to friends and family lost.

Francis, The Dirges front man, thinks of himself as a classically trained antagonist who decided to spread his word through music. He was born and raised in the small factory town of Schenectady NY where a love for tradition and hard work were pounded into him during his formative years. He became a bartender, a chef, and a man whose songs recognize that the stumbling sadness of life needs an energetic nod from time to time. After listening to his songs, you'll realize that ballads aren't always soft and sweet. They may well rile you into a frenzy before the tears begin to flow.

Bass player , Tall Pete finally found his calling when he started working with Fran. Never having committed himself to anything prior, he picked up the bass and discovered his natural rhythm. His driving bass lines are the bedrock for The Dirges deeply layered reality.

Although she was a fan, Alicia Allen didn't join the band until 2003 when Fran and Pete got into an altercation after one of her solo shows. Fran encountered a broken pint glass to the tendon in his hand and enlisted Alicia to cover the rhythm guitar during his recovery. They decided to keep her when they discovered that she's always willing to learn and play new instruments when needed. Now she is playing guitar, mandolin, and flute. In the future she might even put her education in classical oboe to use.

Marc Strommer joined the band in late 2005. He plays lead guitar and lap steel and has become a cornerstone of the bands new sound. He is a graduate of Berklee College of Music in Boston and a member of L.A.'s Dan Band and The Rays. Marc's talent, and more so his attitude towards music and life, have been a driving force in The Dirges recent endeavors.

On drums, Bill "Stuhlly" Brennenstuhl has been making his living as a drummer since attending Berklee school of music. Stuhlly has performed with the likes of Hypnotic Clambake, Mike Gordon, and The Fourhorseman. His driving beats and inventive fills are a perfect fit for The Dirges rambunctious style of music and Fran's heartfelt working class lyrics. This creep can roll.

2009 has been a great year for the band. They've had their music placed in several shows and movies including "Boondock Saints 2 All Saints Day" to hit theaters Oct 30th. The Dirges also embarked on their first tour of the southwest. 2010 looks to be a promising, if not break out year for The Dirges.

In a world where music is inundated with samples and pitch correction The Dirges let the listener remember that there is beauty in the fallible nature of the human race and that blood still flows in the veins of rock-n-roll.