ALBUM REVIEW: Young New England - Transit
Transit - Young New England
Release Date: April 2nd, 2013
Label: Rise Records
Reviewer: Michael Crawford
Transit has a habit of re-inventing themselves. They’re a Boston five-piece that have steadily progressed from their pop punk roots (This Will Not Define Us), into a stellar indie/punk sound (Listen and Forgive) that is hard to slight. Followers of the band will surely compare Young New England to their last release, but ultimately this album should prove more accessible to everybody else. Joe Boynton shows he isn’t afraid to try new things as a vocalist, and the music itself does offer more of a variety than L&F. Unfortunately, this album isn’t so much of a progression as it is (dare I say) a step backwards. Poor production, questionable lyrics and a general “dumbing-down” will most likely piss off a lot of fans.
The first song and initial single, Nothing Lasts Forever, is a toe-tapper that serves well as an introduction. Though not as lyrically astute as we’ve come to expect of these guys, the depressing message contrasts well with the brighter tones the instruments bring. Fans of Misser, a side project of Transit’s own Tim Landers, will quickly feel at home with this album. Second to Right is a call for erasing the past, and while not breathtaking, has its moments. Young New England bares an exuberant chorus that will no doubt polarize fans. The simplistic, ordinary lyrics here just don’t hold a candle to what we heard on L&F. But whether or not you appreciate the alcoholic references, the sense of eternal youth and comradery is relatable for all. The title track reminds us no matter how lost we may end up, there’s always someone out there willing to lend a shoulder.
Transit has always managed to connect with their fans through honest lyrics, and Sleep is no exception. The fourth track is an ode to self-realization and trying to understand why we do the things we do. So Long, So Long keeps things flowing, but unfortunately isn’t that memorable. There’s nothing inherently bad about it, it just doesn’t stick out like some of the other songs after a first listen. Weathered Souls has a striking chorus that turns enormous by the 2:40 mark. Opening lines Do these streets remember your face? Well these bricks still carry the weight paint vivid scenes, and most likely this one will end up as a favorite of current Transit fans. Hang It Up is slower and relaxing, and lyrics such as Pain is temporary, you will love and you will live teach us patience and having the ability to slow down and appreciate what’s around you.
Don’t Go, Don’t Stray may be a sad anthem, but the well placed bro chants give it a unique twist you won’t see much of on YNE. Transit’s brand of sad is definitely their own, but they’ve sprinkled in bits optimism this time around. Sadly, Thanks for Nothing and Summer, ME are plainly forgetful, and you understand why after noticing the surprising amount of mediocrity in the lyrics. It’s also around this section of the album where the instrumentation begins to blend, and not in a good way. Disappointing to see, especially in comparison to the first half of the album. Hazy comes off downright corny, and it’s difficult to justify its presence on YNE. Bright Lights, Dark Shadows is all right, but by this point one can’t help but wonder how this could be the same band that released one of the best albums of 2011. Thankfully, Lake Q at least ends things on a positive note. The final track sounds more like the Transit we love, and not the scattered, uninspired mess of songs that precedes it.
So just what happened to Transit? Perhaps they should have held onto the reins a little longer and trimmed the fat. Is Young New England a bad album? No, but it is a disappointing one and if you’re not already a fan of Transit then YNE won’t change that. They’ve carved themselves a nice niche into the scene, and the faults listed have nothing to do with the fact that they aren’t a “true” pop-punk band anymore. There is some praiseworthy material here, but also missteps that can’t be unheard. Maybe the band just needs to ease off and let their side projects run their course before moving on to another album. Regardless, Transit has merely stumbled where many bands have fallen off completely. Be sure to look out for their Spring headliner tour the next couple of months and pick up Young New England available tomorrow, April 2nd.
Reviewer Score: B
Transit Release New Song “Nothing Lasts Forever” + Announce Tour
Transit have released the first song off of their upcoming album, Young New England, and it’s called ‘Nothing Lasts Forever.’ They’ve also announced a tour with Young Statues and Seahaven. Hit Read More to stream the song and view the dates. It’s awesome.