We reviewed Boston Manor’s last album Welcome To The Neighbourhood when it first came out in 2018 and remarked that it showed a bright future for the band. Now their next album Glue has been released, and we’re pleased to say that the band seemed to have matured even more, with Glue seeming like the next logical step for the band.
By Jane Howkins
Boston Manor started out as a pop-punk band, and whilst they do still retain many of those elements within their music still, it has changed somewhat. We’re reminded of the career arc that Brand New took, however Boston Manor’s career trajectory hasn’t been quite as genre bending as that band were (yet!) As Boston Manor have developed as musicians so has their sound, with moments of the classic emo movement and the alternative rock genre also present within their music.
That’s not to say that the band aren’t still interested in playing pop-punk, but the songs that are within that vein are heavier than one might expect from a typical pop-punk band, which is definitely a good thing to us! Examples of this include opener Everything Is Ordinary Now, which features one of the best melodies that Boston Manor have ever created on the chorus. It’s a great opener and provides an instant burst of energy – our only issue was that the static on the vocals was a little overdone (this effect is also present on a couple of the other tracks) and it occasionally sounds a a bit too busy at times.
This reviewer has remarked before that a lot of the modern pop-punk bands don’t seem to be all that melodic anymore, but thankfully Boston Manor manage to buck that trend. There are some fantastic melodies at play here, and they really do have a penchant for songwriting. It never gets too poppy though, and you can tell that they’re all very proficient musicians. Whilst most of the songs contain singing, there is some screaming present (for example on Only1), providing another interesting style that this band are able to pull off.
Plasticine Dreams shows a different side to the band. The song starts out sounding like a slow ballad, before increasing into a mid-tempo rock song, thankfully without any noticeable vocal effects. It’s really a testament to the power of this band that they’re so able to change their sound within minutes, and by doing so their music should appeal to a wide audience. The lyrical content of Glue is also very enlightening, with some very intense subjects being discussed here. Toxic masculinity is the source of On A High Ledge’s lyrical discussion, and the subject matter of You, Me & the Class War is fairly self explanatory from the title of the song.
All in all, Glue is a great record, and one that we will be listening to for a good long time. There are a couple of things that could have been tweaked to improve some of the songs, but these are things that can be overlooked for the time being. As we said last time, it will be interesting to find out what the band do for their next record, and we’re really enjoying seeing Boston Manor mature and progress as musicians at the moment!