Review || Boston Manor - "GLUE"

Boston Manor are releasing their third full length record titled "GLUE" on Friday, May 1st of 2020 through Pure Noise Records.
In many ways, I was lucky to come across Boston Manor very early on their musical journey; in 2015 I was asked to review an EP called “Saudade” by a then up and coming, mostly unknown -though proving to be sensational- band, which caught me completely off guard with its modern emo/punk tunes, interestingly driven by the uniqueness of Henry Cox’s vocals. Along those vibes came the band’s first LP “Be Nothing” in 2016, which left me equally satisfied and showcased sprinkles of how much the wonder boys from Blackpool in the UK, of all places, were interested in experimenting and expanding. When “Welcome to the Neighbourhood” came out in 2018, I almost didn’t recognize what I was listening to; Boston Manor had made a tremendous shift towards a bigger rock sound with many electronical elements and an exploration into what I could only describe as a brave nouvelle vague-esque aesthetic, a direction that had pop greatness written all over it.    

The band has stayed on the extremely creative wave they have been riding all these years by actually releasing a single for its next LP “GLUE” a little over a year after the previous full length record I mentioned was officially out there, probably just to let the world know how Boston Manor never stops, never settles. A few months further pass and three more singles from the now explicitly revealed new record are released and, even before I get the chance to listen to the entire thing, these songs have almost become second nature to me. The band basically picked up where “Welcome to the Neighbourhood” left off, yet managed to bring forward a collection of songs in a way more complete and developed state, to a point where that previous record wanted to get to. “GLUE” is heavy at times, experimental at others, somehow rounder and fully atmospheric, basically a complete and diverse body of work, which feels exactly like the band is utterly content with it. As singer Henry Cox puts it “this is the start of our band finally becoming the band that we want to be. It's taken us so long to get here, but I'm really proud of us for becoming our own thing. Not once did we think about what people wanted to hear – we just went entirely down the rabbit hole with it. Our only rule was to do what we wanted to do”. 

At a total of 13 songs and 51 minutes, “GLUE” seems almost like a perfect record to my ears, with so many different things to like, from the production - held at The Barber Shop studios in New Jersey, produced by Mike Sapone and engineered by Brett Romnes  to the lyrics and the conveying messages, to a number of downright resonating songs; "Plasticine Dreams", "Liquid", "On a High Ledge", "Stuck In The Mud", "Ratking", "1’s and 0’s" and "Brand New Kids" are my favourite tunes on the record and I must admit that as a whole "GLUE" is just extremely interesting and exciting, so to leave songs out is practically unfair. I love the attention to detail in putting together the music and melodies, in choosing how to artfully visualize the songs for further platforms and of course the underlying choice of being more than just another rock band.

“GLUE” is becoming so much more than I expected with every thorough listen and a signifying fact of hard work combined with talent gradually paying off; I always knew Boston Manor were great, they’ve moved to current favourites of mine. Definite record-of-the-year material.    
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