The Mighty Mighty Bosstones | The Magic of Youth

Big Rig (2011)
By ANNIE ZALESKI  |  December 14, 2011
3.5 3.5 Stars


Earlier this year, VH1 compiled a list of their "40 Greatest One-Hit Wonders of the '90s." Inexplicably, the Mighty Mighty Bosstones' "The Impression That I Get" came in at No. 25, right between Belly's still-classic "Feed the Tree" and Lou Bega's pernicious earworm "Mambo #5 (A Little Bit Of . . .)." When the show aired again in November, irate fans took to Twitter to defend the band and excoriate VH1 for denigrating the accomplishments of Boston's ska-core legends. This month, the Bosstones reward their loyal followers on The Magic of Youth, their second album since returning from their two-year hiatus in 2006. In fact, these 11 new songs represent some of the strongest material of their career. Ragers like "The Package Store Petition" or "The Daylights" (the latter of which features a ferocious Joe Gittleman bassline and guitar grenades from Lawrence Katz) flow seamlessly with ska-dominated tunes such as "The Horse Shoe and the Rabbit's Foot" and "Sunday Afternoons on Wisdom Ave." Produced by Ted Hutt (who also helmed 2009's Pin Points and Gin Joints), The Magic of Youth sounds fantastic. The Bosstones' saxes and brass are crisp and biting, especially on the soulful "Disappearing" and the '90s-reminiscent title track; meanwhile, smart sonic nuances — such as the Dixieland interlude in "They Will Need Music" — add charm. That charm also permeates The Magic of Youth's lyrics; the album is Bosstones storytelling and sloganeering at its best, highlighted by the New England quirks of "Sunday Afternoons on Wisdom Ave." and "The Ballad of Candlepin Paul." Fittingly, however, the album ends with "Open and Honest," a classic Bosstones ska-punk suckerpunch that's a toast to the band's fans for their support. Really, it's the fans of the 737 who owe thanks to the Bosstones for this album.

MIGHTY MIGHTY BOSSTONES 14th ANNUAL HOMETOWN THROWDOWN | House of Blues, 15 Lansdowne St, Boston | December 28-30 @ 6 pm | $25-$35 | all-ages | 888.693.2583

Related: Trans Am | What Day Is It Tonight? Trans Am Live, 1993 - 2008, Various Artists | Where the Action Is: Los Angeles Nuggets 1965 - 1968, Various Artists | Nippon Girls: Japanese Pop, Beat & Bossa Nova 1966–1970, More more >
  Topics: CD Reviews , Music, The Mighty Mighty Bosstones, The Mighty Mighty Bosstones,  More more >
| More

Most Popular
Share this entry with Delicious
  •   WHAT'S F'N NEXT? FIDLAR  |  March 19, 2013
    Ask FIDLAR bassist Brandon Schwartzel some basic questions about his band, and his answers reflect more than a bit of weariness with the rigmarole of publicity and music journalism.
  •   THE EMPOWERMENT OF KATE NASH  |  March 05, 2013
    Singer-songwriter Kate Nash was recently named a Global Ambassador for the Because I Am a Girl initiative, which aims to give females in developing countries the opportunity for a better life.
    In 2001, Desaparecidos were just another band formed by Conor Oberst, already a veteran of the Omaha music scene at the tender age of 21.
  •   THERE’S HOPE FOR THE VACCINES  |  January 23, 2013
    Every few years, a guitar band forms and swaggers up the charts on the strength of music that captures the UK's youthful zeitgeist.
  •   THE BRIGHT LIGHTS OF ELLIE GOULDING  |  January 18, 2013
    Long before Ellie Goulding hit No. 2 on the Billboard Hot 100 in summer 2012 with "Lights" — a starry-eyed dance-floor trifle with subtle neo-disco beats and sleek keyboard burbles — the singer-songwriter was a star in her native England.

 See all articles by: ANNIE ZALESKI