Review || Boston Manor - "Desperate Times Desperate Pleasures"


A year and a half after the release of their third LP, Boston Manor introduced a brand new EP titled “Desperate Times Desperate Pleasures” through SharpTone Records on October 29th of 2021.

Boston Manor, a five piece emo/punk rock band have now released two EPs and three LPs in a mere six years, oh and that also including an 18-month (so far…) worldwide pandemic where it was difficult to even see another band member in person; this is making me feel a bit unproductive. However, before I hit any personal life-crisis panic buttons, I will remind myself that I had the absolute pleasure of reviewing 2020’s record of theirs titled “GLUE” and remember coining it a possible record of that year candidate. I was thoroughly impressed by that record as a culmination of the band’s work I had then been following since, almost, their inception. “GLUE” was perfectly diverse in sound and aesthetic, very well produced and collectively written, all in all superb and elementary.

Can something top that? Well, no; at least not easily. That’s why it’s a great idea to follow a release like that with an EP. In the span of an 18-month historically unique timeframe which in many ways is like an 18-year long nightmare, nothing can be taken for granted concerning musicians where creativity can feel like trying to run while having just woken up from a coma. Insert “Desperate Times Separate Pleasures”, a five song/20 minute long EP released on a new “heavier” label, nonetheless, namely the independently illustrious SharpTone Records. 

Full disclosure, I absolutely love the new EP, albeit I’ve now come to consider myself a huge fan of Boston Manor and I can’t exactly be considered an unbiased listener. The record kicks off with “Carbon Mono”, a heavier than usual track for Boston Manor and an opening I wasn’t expecting; of course, once the chorus hits, all the well-known feels come rushing in, a thing every band should aspire to, having a signature sound and style where Henry Cox’s vocals and the band’s musical brilliance blend beautifully together. “Algorithm”, the second and my favourite track of the EP, brings things into a mellower shoegaze/pop rocking theme, a recurring feeling with also the fourth track “I Don’t Like People (And They Don’t Like Me)”, interjected by another heavier number “Desperate Pleasure” (my least favourite but not a bad song on DTDP). The record finishes appropriately with the most atmospheric - and my second favourite - track of the bunch “Let the Right One In”, almost certainly a reference to the brilliant film of Tomas Alfredson (or the novel by John Ajvide Lindqvist, who also wrote the screenplay for the aforementioned film). Well done lads…

It is official for me, Boston Manor can do no wrong and “Desperate Times Desperate Pleasures” is awfully right. Please bring more music as soon as possible and thank you in advance.                 


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