Transit: Young New England

transit-young-new-england-reviewDo you ever have those bands in your life where you know the name because they’re on everyone’s list or on every other tour you head to, but for some reason you’ve never heard them because you don’t show up for the openers? I think that’s been the case with me and Transit. So this is the first time Transit’s been a part of my “to do” list and for the most part I’m both happy and upset all at the same time with their new album, Young New England. Happy because it was better than I ever expected and bummed that it’s taken me this long to finally be introduced. What I thought they sounded like and this album are very different. Young New England is more an indie alternative album than anything with many notes of growing up and odes to the places they did so.

What are growing up and Boston? That’d be the Jeopardy answer/question to “Themes on Young New England.” Every other song mentioned the New England city. If it wasn’t paying respect to a place they call home, it was talking about growing up. Growing up not in the sense that they are right out of high school and figuring things out, but continuing towards adulthood long after you’ve legally been one for years.

It’s not realistic to sit and praise an album that’s not ultimate perfection. Not everyone can be Backstreet Boys’ Millennium. With that, I’ll let you in on a couple of songs that just didn’t hold their own. “Hang It Up” was one I didn’t mind skipping because it wasn’t as interesting off the bat as the songs we’ll get to in a second. The other song that made me say “next!” was “Hazy.” The layering of the backing vocals made it seem creepy, and that might just be the time of night talking, but I didn’t care for it one bit.

Advice, listen to Young New English on shuffle because if you don’t you will get stuck on the first three and never leave to discover the rest of the record. “Nothing Lasts Forever” has an amazing acoustic start that strikes you, then it goes into this quick delivery that mirrored a crazed person calming down just a little bit, for it was fast, but wasn’t a Busta Rhymes’ performance. The thing I loved most about “Second to Right” was that it started off with a universal tone, with talk of always staying in the past and yearning for things you can’t have. Then it turned into a more personal musical story as the song progressed. The last of the kings is “Young New England.” A drinking song has never sounded so classy. Boston might want to vote the chorus of this one as their new anthem. Who do you talk to about that, Mark Wahlberg or Conan O’Brien?

Young New England wasn’t the perfect record because I often set up camp with the first three, but it had enough hits for me to note it on the little post-its I have that keep track of my favorite musical things from the year; songs, albums, shows. You’ll have to wait until December to find out which track might end up on my annual “best of” list, but the wait for Young New England is no more because it’s out now on Rise Records. If you’re into bands like American Football and Colourmeinkindness, then you’ll want to check out Transit’s Young New England and then head out to see them with Seahaven and Young Statues.

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