American shows could be the last...

The Pogues could be set to withdraw from major tours, after confirming that their new Stateside jaunt could be their last.

Formed in the post-punk era, The Pogues took their inspiration from traditional Irish music. Matching punk energy with a sense of tradition, the band were unexpectedly taken up as the voice of the Irish diaspora.

A renowned live act, The Pogues developed a love affair with the United States. Cities such as Boston and New York have well established Irish communities, who took the raucous Londoners to their heart.

Returning to the United States for a series of shows, it seems that their current tour could be their last. Speaking to Billboard, Spider Stacey explained that the economics of running an eight piece has taken its toll.

The costs are continually rising, forcing ticket prices to be driven up in the middle of a recession. Equally, The Pogues have to factor in the unpredictable behaviour of Shane MacGowan.

"We can't always entirely trust Shane to deliver the goods," Stacy said. "When we're asking ($70) or so, that's a lot of money. I think people have got a right to expect a good evening out, at least - which is, in all fairness, pretty much what people get."

"But I'm hardly telling tales out of school when I say that isn't always the case. Anybody reading this who's had any experience at all of seeing the Pogues live: if I say, 'Of course it's completely flawless,' they'll say, 'That's a lie, Spider.' "

All of which could lead to a reduction in live shows. The Pogues closed their Stateside jaunt with three nights in New York, including a special performance on St. Patricks Day. According to Spider Stacy, this ritual could soon become a memory.

"There might be the odd sort of one-off here and there, or other things like that," he explained. "We're not saying this is absolutely, definitely the end. But as things stand at the moment, I don't really see us continuing as we have been."

"It seems to have run its course. You can never say a door is absolutely, definitely and finally shut, but we're drawing the line, to a certain extent, this time."

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