Over the past 5 years, very few British Pop-Punk bands have been as exciting as Blackpool-based 5-Piece Boston Manor, who has been consistently releasing some of the best albums in the genre since 2018. After an EP last year (Desperate Times Desperate Pleasures), the band has released a steady stream of singles all leading up to their latest release, an album that’s atmosphere lives between dusk and dawn, Datura.
Opening the album is Datura (Dusk), which somehow manages to create the atmosphere of a night drive through quiet city streets perfectly thanks to the ominous synths and layered vocals that slowly build and erupts into this dark heaviness as soon as track two, Floodlights on The Square kicks in with the hauntingly beautiful atmosphere and poetic lyricism. Track 3 of the album is one of the three singles, Foxglove, a song I’ve had on repeat since it was released with its ridiculously bouncy chorus alongside its nihilistic lyricism.
As we move into the album’s second half, Passenger carries on the energy and atmosphere with its synth-heavy verses and layered vocals that complement the beautiful instrumental work behind them to create a feeling of constantly increasing speed before Crocus comes in and slows the pace back down with incredible bass and synth-heavy verses and guitar as a subtle flavour enhancer to create something with ridiculous heaviness, both sonically and atmospherically. Shelter From The Rain keeps the atmosphere with another haunting track that brings me back to memories of rainy nights when I’ve been unable to sleep just staring through the window and watching the world around me, before the closing track Inertia slows the pacing down in an incredibly emotional song that highlights what makes Boston Manor stand out from literally all of their contemporaries. The blend of atmosphere and lyricism in Inertia is like nothing I’ve heard this year.
Datura is a phenomenal release that highlights every strength Boston Manor has and perfects them simultaneously. From the unfaltering atmosphere that carries along from track to track creating this feeling of eternal night, to the beautiful instrumental work from everyone involved and the bleak lyrics that speak to the soul, Boston Manor has created a true work of art.
I cannot wait to see what part two of the album holds whenever it gets released, as I already know it will be great.