JESS BECK | Go Venue Magazine
This would’ve been an interesting scene to have unfolded if this was closer to St. Patty’s Day, but we were all a little Irish on Tuesday, October 17, 2023, at the Amsoil Arena in Duluth, MN.
I wasn’t sure what to expect with the show being so far up North, but holy fuck it did NOT disappoint!
The legends Dropkick Murphys graced the stage in a punk show through and through that also saw the likes of Jesse Ahern and The Interrupters – and it’s always such a treat to have like-sounding artists opening up for the headliner.
Yeah…this was a good fucking night!
Before we delve into the chaos and joy that is The Interrupters, let’s tip our hats to the opening act, Jesse Ahern. You may not know him yet, but you’ll remember him after this show. Ahern is like a human dynamo, combining rock, punk, and a pinch of folk to create a sound that’s as infectious as a pop song, but with the grit of punk. His lyrics are sharp, his tunes catchy, and he’s bound to charm the socks off even the most stoic concert-goers.
You know…charm in like the Peaky Blinders kind of way. If you told me he was a bouncer from Boston, I’d of believed you in a heartbeat. But holy fuck can this guy sing, tell a story, play guitar, AND play the harmonica at the same time. That’s like…a shitload of things that I can’t do, so kudos to that guy!
But Ahern isn’t just a musician; he’s a mood enhancer. He doesn’t sing; he serenades. He doesn’t perform; he parties. By the time he’s done, you’ll be convinced that he’s not a mere mortal but a musical superhero, soaring above the stage, cape flapping in the wind (metaphorically, of course). If you’ve got a pulse, you’re going to have a blast when Jesse Ahern gets your party started.
The Interrupters were up next, and they came out swinging for the fences immediately. These ska-punk wonders are like the James Bond of the punk rock world. Impossibly cool, slightly unpredictable, and guaranteed to have you dancing like no one’s watching. Led by Aimee Interrupter (who was so thankful to the audience, and that’s so cool to see) and her gritty powerful vocals, The Interrupters are your ticket to a raucous good time.
Also, when the entire band wears high water pants – you know you’re gonna die in the pit.
Their music is the kind of punk that gets your heart pounding and your feet moving. With songs like “She’s Kerosene” and “Take Back the Power,” they’ve got the energy to shake the Amsoil Arena’s foundation. And when you’re listening to these punk pioneers, you’ll forget about your Monday morning woes and embrace the wild side of life.
They were super interactive with the audience, too, which was awesome to see. There were so many high-fives, jokes, and mosh pits – it was a great performance all the way around for the family band from Los Angeles (it’s true that Kevin (guitar), Justin (bass), and Jesse (drums) are all brothers)!
Last but certainly not least, the headliners – Dropkick Murphys! You’d think by now they’d run out of energy, but if anything, they’re just getting started. With their signature blend of Celtic folk and punk rock, these Boston bad boys are like a fine wine; they only get better with age.
Opening with “Worker’s Song” was the right choice as the arena was about to collapse, everyone was jumping around so much! But their “Union Proud” sign was also a very smart choice to display in an industry town like Duluth.
My one regret was that I didn’t have my glitter beard prepared, but that’s a St. Patty’s Day only thing, so I wasn’t about to drive 5 hours with a beard full of glitter and then have to work.
Next time, though, maybe!
Together, these three acts promised a night filled with fantastic music, unforgettable memories, and probably a few unexpected surprises (like drinking moonshine out of some strangers’ bra – but that’s a story for another day). If you were in Duluth on the night of the show, you had two options: attend the concert and join the punk party of a lifetime, or sit at home and wonder why you missed out on the most electrifying evening of the year.
A big thank you to the Amsoil Arena staff who worked hard to make this event happen! Your efforts are seen, and I’m glad that everyone was real nice. Keep wearing that deodorant to your shows, treat your venue staff with respect, and keep being excellent to one another! We’ll catch ya at the next show!