The Dropkick Murphys

BOSTON-based Celtic-punk band Dropkick Murphys have released a three-song EP to benefit the victims of the Boston Marathon bombings. One song features Bruce Springsteen, who sought out the group in hours after the April 15 terror attack.

“Our friend Bruce Springsteen joins us for a new version of ‘Rose Tattoo,’ featuring his vocals,” the group says in a release at their website.

The remaining songs are two live acoustic tracks recorded at the Gibson Showroom in Las Vegas, just four days after the bombing that killed three.

“Bruce actually called us up the day of the bombing and asked what he could do to help,” Dropkick Murphys guitarist James Lynch told Springsteen fanzine Backstreets. “We didn’t have to reach out. He was there for us.

“As soon as we figured out what we were going to do Bruce went into the studio, recorded his parts and nailed them right away,” frontman Ken Casey added.

Springsteen and the Dropkick Murphys have a previous relationship, with the New Jersey rocker guesting on their rendition of the Irish standard “Peg O’ My Heart” for their 2011 album Going Out in Style.

In addition, Springsteen has shared a stage with the group multiple times. According to Billboard magazine, Springsteen’s “Badlands” is a regular part of the Dropkick Murphys set.

“Don’t Tear Us Apart” is a recording from an in-store appearance in Las Vegas. It’s a track from their excellent new LP, Signed and Sealed in Blood.

“At the first sign of hardship/Many bite the hand that feeds/And when there’s trouble/Others simply cut and run/And when there’s fear a man will slit the throat of his neighbor/In a desperate search for comfort and love,” sings Casey in a raucous, unplugged version of the track.

It’s not the only song on the EP whose lyrics have an eerie significance to the events in Boston. On “Rose Tattoo,” another track from the album re-booted with a Springsteen vocal, they sing, ”The pictures tell the story/This life had many shades/I’d wake up every morning/And before I’d start each day/I’d take a drag from last night’s cigarette/That smoldered in its tray.”

This isn’t the band’s first effort to raise funds for those afflicted by this terrorist attack. Dropkick Murphys created a special "For Boston" t-shirt they sold through their website with all donations going to the victims of the bombings. The donations reached $65,000 in less than 15 hours and totaled over $100,000.

The band will be playing Asbury Park’s Stone Pony on Sunday, August 25. This venue is the mecca of all things Springsteen and this reviewer is wondering if The Boss will grace the stage?