Review Summary: "They will need music to uplift. It will be a godsend; it will be a gift."
This is exactly the gift The Mighty Mighty Bosstones have given us in The Magic of Youth
: inspiring, uplifting and beautifully positive music. Listening to this album, you can't help but smile, sing along and let go of your worries. In the song "They Will Need Music", The Bosstones sing of music that will provide strength, warmth and comfort to the listener and they have fully delivered it. This album is joyously brilliant. It is a must-have for anyone with ears.
The Magic of Youth
starts off with a bang in a heavier song titled "The Daylights." It has a great "*** it" attitude and proudly exclaims "Do everything we want to do/ Let's do everything before we die!" The idea presented that there are no limits, and nothing holding us back from our goals, sets the tone perfectly for the rest of the album. This radiant positivity is also present in "Horse Shoe and the Rabbit's Foot" which sings of holding onto your good luck charms, relaxing, and taking the days in stride. "Horse Shoe" is very refreshing, and almost sedating. The upbeat lyrics put the listener in a gentle, carefree mood.
Other songs that really stand out on the album include "Disappearing," which was the song that really hooked me into the album. It incorporates a very loud and catchy hook with a few slower, almost spoken verses. This combined with the tribal drum-work and a very prominent brass performance makes it the bread and butter of the album, and it only gets better from there. "Package Store Petition" is more in-your-face, and instrumentally darker. Starting off with a deep, blaring horn section, this energizing song encourages defiance, change and protest.
In The Magic of Youth
, The Bosstones not only show their talents as musicians, but as storytellers as well. The title track, "The Magic of Youth," tells of a young couple struggling to make ends meet. They have no knowledge of where the money for bills or food is going to come from. However, The Bosstones spin this uncertainty into something positive with a can-do attitude that describes this struggle as a magical, tragic, and exciting time. Another great example of their storytelling abilities is the mellow and sentimental "Sunday Afternoons on Wisdom Ave," that tells of a childhood experience. The song has a lazy, relaxing feel and the lyrics instantly transport the listener into that Sunday afternoon. Also, much like in "Horse Shoe and the Rabbits Foot," the backing vocals on the song compliment Barrett's voice perfectly and tie the whole track together.
The Bosstones keep going strong until the end. The last tracks "The Upper Hand" and "The Ballad of Candlepin Paul" perfectly balance out some of the slower songs from earlier in the album. These final tracks are fast, fun and great to nod along with. Finally, The Magic of Youth
ends on a perfect note with the short "Open and Honest," which starts off with a slow, reggae vibe that later erupts into a triumphant roar by the band.
I can not praise this album enough. It is so much fun to listen to, it's full of inspiring lyrics and uplifting musicianship. The Magic of Youth grew on me so easily and naturally. The positive nature of this album is addicting; it will lift your spirits and put your head in the air. This being the first time I've really sat down with The Mighty Mighty Bosstones, I have no basis for comparison to their previous works. However, after hearing this latest piece from them, I will surely check out what they've done in the past and look very forward to anything this band puts out in the future.