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The scrappy Boston-bred Irish punk band Dropkick Murphys have turned to an unlikely ally to reveal their new album, Signed and Sealed in Blood, to the world: late-night talk show host Conan O’Brien.

“Those guys are all from Boston. They’re old friends. They actually played with him when he toured America in the summer of 2010,” explained the band’s manager, Jeff Castelaz, about the band’s new album being premiered via an exclusive stream on O’Brien’s official Team Coco website during an exclusive interview with (the album is officially released on January 8).

“The Boston blood runs very, very deep. They have a deep mutual love and respect for one another,” Castelaz continued. “Conan called them up and said, ‘hey, we have a website and a lot of people looking at it. We love premiering people’s albums, and we’d love to do you guys right at the top of the year.’ We were happy to say no to everybody else and yes to him.”

While premiering a highly anticipated new rock album on a talk show host/comedian’s website is highly unorthodox, it was a chance the band was eager to take. According to Castelaz, it has paid off handsomely.

“The response has been amazing. I can tell you that the response on our Facebook page within the first half-hour of putting up the link to the stream on Conan’s site has been incredible,” Castelaz enthused. “People recognize the Boston connection between Conan and the Dropkicks, and also the great things people are saying about it, which in my opinion is the band’s best album ever. They gambled and it’s all paying off.”

The Dropkick Murphys recently announced their upcoming “St. Patrick’s Day Tour,” which kicks off in Cleveland on February 21 before landing in their hometown for the band’s first-ever headlining show at the legendary Boston Gardens (now known as TD Garden) on March 15. To mark the occasion, the guys are turning the show into an even bigger event, “Dropkick Murphys Irish Festival,” featuring a host of bands on two stages amidst other attractions. The tour culminates on St. Patrick’s Day (March 17) for an “epic finale” at the House of Blues on Lansdowne St.

-Scott T. Sterling, CBS Local


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