Publication date 3rd March 2024.
Wymer Publishing and Martin Popoff have shared a long history celebrating the works of Phil Lynott and Thin Lizzy. There’s the established narrative in two parts—Emerald and The Sun Goes Down—along with Thin Lizzy: The Visual Biography, which is much more than that, given the detailed timeline accompanying the explosion of pictures arranged to tell this band’s legendary tale.
Now we have Honesty Is No Excuse: Thin Lizzy on Record, where Popoff turns the microphone outward to an assemble panel of Lizzy scholars and devotees. Together, the moderator and his brain trust deconstruct each of Thin Lizzy’s 12 studio albums and every single song inside of them. From “The Rocker” through “Jailbreak,” “The Boys Are Back in Town,” “Bad Reputation,” “Dancing in the Moonlight” and the bruising heavy metal heft of the band’s final album Thunder and Lightning, Thin Lizzy prove ripe for rich discussion, from Lynott’s literary lyrics through to the trademark twin guitars of Scott Gorham and Brian Robertson.
What emerges is a series of 12 substantive conversations, with theories proposed and debated, parts of songs pointed out and praised, and, repeatedly, punches not pulled. Judging from the effusive praise afforded Popoff’s similarly structured Dominance and Submission: The Blue Öyster Cult Canon, it’s likely that the most demanding of Thin Lizzy fans will come away with fresh perspectives on the band they hadn’t as of yet considered. And that’s the point of Popoff’s panel presentation—to send the devoted listener back to the sacred texts for a reminder of why he or she fell in love with Thin Lizzy in the first place.