Train, a Girl, a Bottle, a Boat

American roots rock band Train have released their tenth studio album, a Girl, a Bottle, a Boat.

By Jane Howkins. 

Train are one of those bands that have gotten a lot of stick over the years, perhaps unnecessarily so. Family Guy fans will remember the moment in season 13 where Brian and Peter both pretend to hate the band, before admitting to each other that they actually rather like them, and that’s probably a fairly good estimation of the way most people feel about the group.

It’s a shame because Train really aren’t that bad of a band, and it’s clear from AGABAB that they have some talent, as well as the ability to create catchy hooks. They actually started life as a roots band back in 1993 (a world away from the pop infused tracks that they now create), but there are still elements of their old life present, especially on final track Lost & Found. However, for the most part that sound is long gone, replaced with the new, more pop orientated groove they’ve been playing around with for the last decade or so.

This seems to be the main reason why people dislike the band so much, and if you’re looking for the Train of old you will find yourself disappointed, but if you’re a fan of their modern work, then you should like this. These days they’re more akin to Maroon 5 than Counting Crows, and whilst there is some cheesiness to be had (especially in Blue Moon soundalike Play That Song),  there are also plenty of catchy, summery tunes.

a girl, a bottle, a boat is a decent record, but your enjoyment of it will largely depend upon which version of Train you’re wanting to hear. If you’re looking for the roots stuff of old, then it’s probably best to stay away from this. However, if you like their newer material, then feel free to go ahead and give it a whirl.