Beantown punk bashers the Street Dogs have always been an audacious pack—their 2002 debut, Savin Hill, bristled with original numbers fraught with old school aggro, yet they also had the balls to re-tool Sham 69’s groundbreaking “Borstal Breakout” as “Boston Breakout” and the daredevil vision to cover Kris Kristofferson’s 1971 on-the-bum classic “The Pilgrim: Chapter 33”—talk about a “walking contradiction.” But considering Street Dog leader Mike McColgan’s unusual pedigree—he’s a former firefighter and Gulf War veteran—such bold moves are scarcely surprising, as the dude has clearly stuck his head into some hair-raisingly intense experiences. Of course, as former frontman of rabid ’90s punk faves the Dropkick Murphy’s, McColgan is no stranger to the blast furnace of chaos and risk, a fact irrefutably reflected in the Street Dogs’ hard-charging, way, way off the leash music. Their most recent album, 2008’s State of Grace, oozes with elegant savagery even as it betrays hints of such disparate influences as Aussie metal demons AC/DC and trad Irish folk heroes the Clancy Brothers. That kind of genre-spanning fearlessness flies in the face of many of punk rock’s purists but McColgan’s defiant whatever-I-want-to attitude rings with far more truth than the Mohawk-topped zealots’ severely limited “punker than thou” mindset. When these untamed mutts hit the stage, you can expect a formidable onslaught of thunderous declarations, thrashing dynamism and good old fashioned, just for the hell of it musical wilding.
Street Dogs w/The Darlings, Roll Over The Tanks, Camp Schultz, Subvert at Karma, 12152 Cottonwood Rd., Victorville, (760) 955-1600, www.myspace.com/karmaconcerts; Tues, June 2, 7PM. $10 advance, $12 door.