Signed and Sealed in Blood

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Signed and Sealed in Blood
Studio album by
ReleasedJanuary 8, 2013
RecordedMay – July 2012
StudioQ Division Studios
(Somerville, Massachusetts)
GenreCeltic punk, folk punk
LabelBorn & Bred
ProducerTed Hutt
Dropkick Murphys chronology
Going Out in Style
Signed and Sealed in Blood
Rose Tattoo: For Boston Charity
Deluxe Edition cover
Signed and Sealed in Blood: Deluxe Edition
Signed and Sealed in Blood: Deluxe Edition
Singles from Signed and Sealed in Blood
  1. "Rose Tattoo"
    Released: November 7, 2012
  2. "The Season's Upon Us[1]"
    Released: December 18, 2012
  3. "The Boys Are Back [2]"
    Released: January 31, 2013
  4. "Out of Our Heads [3]"
    Released: September 6, 2013

Signed and Sealed in Blood is the eighth studio album by the Dropkick Murphys. The album was released on January 8, 2013 on the band's Born & Bred Records label. The album made its debut at No.9 on the Billboard album chart, the third highest debut for the band.[4]

The album has produced four singles including "Rose Tattoo" and "The Season's Upon Us", a Christmas themed song that became one of the band's more successful charting singles. "The Boys Are Back" and "Out of Our Heads" (which was also used as the theme song for the television show, Boston's Finest) were also released as singles. A special 2013 charity version titled "Rose Tattoo" featuring Bruce Springsteen was released in response to the Boston Marathon bombings.[5] The single reached #25 on the Rock Songs chart. "Prisoner's Song" has been heavily featured in commercials for Captain Morgan's liquor and in July 2017 it was used in the season 8 trailer for The Walking Dead.[6]


On August 31, 2012, the band announced the album's title and first single, "Rose Tattoo" through their Facebook page. The title of the album is taken from lyrics in "Rose Tattoo". The band asked fans to tattoo themselves with the new logo from the album's cover and send photos and videos to their web site by September 19, 2012. The images were used in the packaging for the CD and vinyl album.

The album has sold 106,000 copies as of Sept. 10, 2013.

Musical style[edit]

Where "Going Out in Style" told the story of a fictional character named Cornelius Larkin—complete with an obituary written by Michael Patrick MacDonald for the liner notes -- "Signed..." has no such constraints. "This is just the opposite of that," bassist Ken Casey explains, "just us having fun and making the most catchy, singalong kind of songs we can. It's not that the last album wasn't fun. It was. 'Going Out in Style' is one of the records I'm most proud of, of anything we've done. But it gave me a couple migraines along the way, getting through that because everything was so connected. This time we cut loose." But he does feel that "Signed..." is also "almost a continuation of ('Going Out in Style'), in a musical sense. There's an upbeat, party vibe to it. A lot of these songs, we were having such a good time writing them and just enjoying the writing process. It's the quickest we've released an album, ever, after another."

The group has been previewing some of the new songs during its Halfway To St. Patrick's Day U.S. tour, which wraps up September 21, 2012 in Boston. Casey describes the final track, "End of the Night," as "the closing time, kind of loser's anthem, about people who don't want to go home." The album also features a holiday song called "The Seasons Upon Us," which Casey promises "is definitely not some cheesy Christmas tune. It's about a dysfunctional family."

Critical reception[edit]

Professional ratings
Aggregate scores
Review scores
AllMusic4/5 stars[8]
The A.V. ClubB+[9]
The Boston Globe(favorable)[10]
Consequence of SoundC+[11]
Kerrang!4/5 stars[7]
Los Angeles Times3/4 stars[12]
musicOMH3.5/5 stars[13]
PopMatters6/10 stars[14]
Rolling Stone3.5/5 stars[15]

Signed and Sealed in Blood was well received by music critics. The album holds an average critic score of 77/100 at Metacritic, based on 17 critics, indicating "generally favorable reviews".[7] Gregory Heaney of AllMusic gave the album four out of five stars called it "an album that's sure to please Murphys fans both old and new".[8] At The Observer, Hermione Hoby gave the album two stars out of five, criticising it as 'hearty but slightly absurd'.[17]

Track list[edit]

1."The Boys Are Back"3:20
2."Prisoner's Song"2:47
3."Rose Tattoo"5:06
5."Jimmy Collins' Wake" (Lyrics by Richard Johnson)2:59
6."The Season's Upon Us"4:02
7."The Battle Rages On"2:17
8."Don't Tear Us Apart"3:01
9."My Hero"3:10
10."Out on the Town"3:02
11."Out of Our Heads"3:11
12."End of the Night"5:17
Total length:40:49
Bonus tracks
1."Lucky Charlie" (Digital stores, Japanese CD) 
2."The Boys Are Back (Acoustic)" (Bonus digital download card with Deluxe Edition) 
3."78 RPM" (Stiff Little Fingers Cover, written by Jake Burns and Gordon Ogilvie. Bonus digital download card with Deluxe Edition) 
4."The Battle Rages On (Acoustic)" (Pre-order bonus digital download card) 
5."AK-47 (All I Want For Christmas Is An)" ("The Season's Upon Us" 7" single) 
6."Shark Attack" (Bonus track on the vinyl pressing) 

Fans who pre-ordered the album through the band's website received MP3 download of the song, "The Season's Upon Us" as well as a digital download card with their order which included three exclusive songs. "The Season's Upon Us" was also released as a 7" single in special colors of red, green and white with the non-album b-side "AK-47 (All I Want For Christmas Is An)".[18]


Dropkick Murphys

Additional musicians

  • Winston Marshall - guest banjo on "Rose Tattoo"
  • Michelle DaRosa - vocals on "Rose Tattoo" and "The Season's Upon Us"
  • Parkington Sisters - strings on various songs, vocals on "End of the Night" and "Shark Attack"
  • Niki Cremmen - vocals on "Rose Tattoo"
  • So Many Close Friends - additional gang vocals on various songs


  1. ^ "DKM The Season's Upon Us Limited 7" EP - White". Retrieved 12 December 2014.
  2. ^ "Dropkick Murphys - "The Boys Are Back" Music Video Premiere". Retrieved 12 December 2014.
  3. ^ Video on YouTube
  4. ^ "Who Charted? Guitars Rule and Pop Drools as Dropkick Murphys Enter the Top 10". SPIN. Retrieved 12 December 2014.
  5. ^ "Bruce Springsteen Collaborates With The Dropkick Murphys". Retrieved 12 December 2014.
  6. ^
  7. ^ a b c "Reviews for Signed and Sealed in Blood by Dropkick Murphys". Metacritic. Retrieved July 2, 2015.
  8. ^ a b Heaney, Gregory (January 7, 2013). "Signed and Sealed in Blood - Dropkick Murphys". AllMusic. Retrieved July 2, 2015.
  9. ^ Heller, Jason (January 8, 2013). "Review: Dropkick Murphys: Signed And Sealed In Blood". The A.V. Club. Retrieved July 2, 2015.
  10. ^ McLennan, Scott (January 7, 2013). "CD REVIEW: Dropkick Murphys, 'Signed and Sealed in Blood'". Boston Globe. Retrieved July 2, 2015.
  11. ^ Bray, Ryan (January 18, 2013). "Dropkick Murphys - Signed and Sealed In Blood". Consequence of Sound. Retrieved July 2, 2015.
  12. ^ Wood, Mikael (January 8, 2013). "Album review: Dropkick Murphys' 'Signed and Sealed in Blood'". Los Angeles Times. Retrieved July 2, 2015.
  13. ^ Shepherd, Sam (January 7, 2013). "Dropkick Murphys - Signed And Sealed In Blood". musicOMH. Retrieved July 2, 2015.
  14. ^ Fiander, Matthew (January 8, 2013). "Dropkick Murphys: Signed and Sealed in Blood". PopMatters. Retrieved July 2, 2015.
  15. ^ Dolan, Jon (January 8, 2013). "The Dropkick Murphys Signed and Sealed in Blood Album Review". Rolling Stone. Retrieved July 2, 2015.
  16. ^ "Album Review - Dropkick Murphys: Signed And Sealed In Blood". SputnikMusic. January 18, 2013. Retrieved July 2, 2015.
  17. ^ Hermione Hoby. "Dropkick Murphys: Signed and Sealed in Blood – review". The Observer. Retrieved July 2, 2015.
  18. ^ "Dropkick Murphys homepage". Retrieved 12 December 2014.