by musiclover311 USER (5 Reviews)
August 15th, 2005 | 56 replies

Release Date: 1997 | Tracklist

Many critics say Transistor is one of 311 worst albums however; this is 311 best album ever including the new album Don't Tread On Me. Filled with many effects and tons of totally different music the album journeys through many forms of music also combing ones not usually seen together. Almost every song is great and it is completely off the norm yet it is amazing.

1. Transistor- 4/5 Good song. The title song gives you a taste of what the album is going to be starting with the rock intro and falling into the reggae ending. Very characteristic of the album

2. Prisoner- 5/5 Another song away form the norm. Many different styles blended into one known as 311. The reggae mixed with the rock blends perfectly and gives a psychedelic feel ominous of 311.

3. Galaxy- 4/5 One of the hardest rocking songs on the album yet as the hard intro comes in immediately SA comes in rapping giving the song another meaning and feel. Short but good

4. Beautiful Disaster- 5/5 Great song with a hard rock intro sliding into the reggae hinting guitar solo and sliding back into the rock riff with distant almost distorted voice giving the song a far away feel. One of the best songs on the album and probably the best 311 single to date.

5. Inner Light Spectrum- 5/5 An amazing song and one of the first that SA sings and he does and amazing job. This song definitely gives a far away psychedelic feeling. One of the many songs to just sit back and chill to.

6. Electricity- 4/5 It took me several listens to begin to like this song, mainly because the intro is so rock and the lyrics donít match it. However, after the listens this song is very good definitely and rock song with a driving guitar line. The chorus is amazing and driving.

7. What Was I Thinking- 4/5 Many people love this song and it is definitely a good song with the amazing slap bass intro leading into the anger filled, distorted lyrics. Very short yet really good

8. Jupiter- 4.5/5 The drum beat begins everything and it flows right into the driving guitar almost immediately followed by Nick. After that were brought into a hard chorus mixed with SA's smooth lyrics giving off a rock feel. The outro also adds ending as if the chords had been pulled out of the amplifiers.

9. Use of Time- 5/5 -AMAZING! Probably the best 311 song of all time. Starting with the mellow chords off Tim's guitar followed by the distant vocals of Nick. The vocals just seem to melt into the guitar riff pulling off an amazing mellow sound. But as always, the chorus begins and gives a very different feel as the bass kicks in with a busy line. Yet Nick still sings the same giving a very distant feel. Strangely, the song picks up with a loud verse right into the first of two amazing solos ending right into the chorus and finally descending back into the original melodic riff. Finally culminating with an even superior solo slowing climaxing and ending abruptly

10. The Continuous Life- 4.5/5 With a hard act to follow this song does a great job pushing the sound of the album further with the mellow guitar line with SA signing then into the loud pushing chorus. Ending on the same chorus once again leaving off at the climax of the song giving no time for the listener to come down forcing them to move to the next song

11. No Control- 4/5 A strange song to follow the two previous tracks, It doesnít seem to fit and almost seems out of place. Nevertheless not a let down the intro continuous with the mellow feel but that soon fades into a rapping SA to a hard guitar line then falling right back into the busy funky guitar line. The song ends abruptly, yet again, at a climatic part with SA rapping to the same hard line followed by Nick singing, "take that one further"

12. Running- 5/5 Another amazing song!!! Starting with a both guitars playing mixing perfectly together then into SA singing one of his best behind a guitar line heavily "wawa"ed. Then into a very wordy chorus, yet it mixes perfectly. Never stopping the song goes immediately back into the verse. Finally taking a break from the words with a guitar line giving anyone singing along a chance to catch their breathe. Just as youíre ready the goes back into the breathless lyrics of the verse and chorus and ending on one of the few slowly descending notes. Definitely one of the best songs on the album.

13. Color- 3/5 The only song I donít really like but I think itís almost and intermission. An instrumental loaded with effects and strange sounds and rarely played live, it gives the listener a break. Acting as the bridge between almost two different ďalbums.Ē

14. Light Years- 4/5 A fan favorite and it kicks of the psychedelic version of the album with the almost alien sounds guitar line. Heading into the reggae verse yet again loaded with affects and turn table affects this songs definitely starts the group of songs off well.

15. Creature Feature- 4.5/5 Continuing with the psychedelic feeling the strange bass intro pushes the listener further into a strange world. Still loaded with effects the song ends on the high note reminiscent of the other half of the record.

16. Tune In- 3.5/5- Not a huge fan of this song but it fits with the record bushing the listener further into the psychedelic world created with the second half of album. More rock than the two previous songs but hinting at the songs to come at the end of the album

17. Rub A Dub- 5/5- Bringing us right back into the psychedelic feeling yet extremely reggae. Probably one of the most reggae 311 songs and giving the feeling of being on a beach on a secluded island. Loaded with many effects, almost becoming a trademark of the second part of the record. Extremely unique and an amazing song.

18. Starshines- 4/5- Starting with a normal rock intro the song quickly diverts to a reggae chorus still blending many styles together yet sounding amazing while doing it. The sound completely changes when SA starts rapping with a driving guitar line the stopping into nothing except a pulsing noise pushing right into the end of the song.

19. Strangers- 4.5/5 I love the intro to this song. I can't even describe what genre of music that is. This song fits perfectly with the other songs on album and starts to bring the listener out of the psychedelic world yet the song is filled with effects. Yet again, just like Starshines the song completely changes into Nick raping but flowing right back into the chorus.

20. Borders- 4/5- The song basically ends the psychedelic part of the album and it seems out of place to me. Starting with the driving guitar line and the rapping by both Nick and SA. Never really coming down this song continues driving throughout
21. Stealing Happy Hours- 5/5 Reminiscent of Use of Time. A strange placement for this song just after Borders it seems isolated. Definitely a mellowed out song a filled with effects this song blends the mellow songs with the psychedelic songs. The only problem I have with this song although itís not anything big it just seems to all run together. However, the guitar solos are awesome and the record cutting is amazing mixing perfectly with the song. Several breaks in the song the by the time youíve realized it the verse has come back. By the time, you realize that the song is on its last guitar solo and itís over along with the album. If you listen to the silence that follows, there are some eerie sounds at around five minutes.

And so the album ends. After journeying through 21 songs, almost 2 distinct parts and many strange sounds you come out thinking "What the **** was that" however after a few listens your attitude turns towards "Holy **** I still donít know what that is but it sounds ****ing awesome"

-Tom Pusateri

user ratings (323)
other reviews of this album
Flyboy (4)

Bwgrotha1s (3)
There's plenty of Good and Great material on Transistor to make it worth your time and money, but th...

Comments:Add a Comment 
August 15th 2005


Album Rating: 2.0

ewwwwwww 311

I don't like them that much but good review anyways

August 15th 2005


Album Rating: 5.0

What? Why even post if you don't like them. You deserve no air. 311 rocks harder than all.

August 16th 2005


Best cd ever, 21 by the best band in the land!

August 16th 2005


d00d 311 totully r4wkz0rz my s0xx0rs lolz!!!!!!!1!1!oneone

Zesty Mordant
August 16th 2005


Album Rating: 2.5

^^Wow, you sure are funny.

I find that this album is wayyyy too long and very repetitive. "Use of Time" is the only real song that catches my attention. Where 311 is concerned, Grassroots and From Chaos are their best releases.

Not bad of a review though.

August 17th 2005


Album Rating: 4.0

i think this si my favorite album and seriously underratted by many, not just speakin as a 311 fan but as a musician, a very good origianal amazing record

September 2nd 2005


not 311's best, but that doesnt say much negatively

June 21st 2006


good album, not the best, but better than from chaos

August 5th 2006


Album Rating: 3.0

This album rocks. My favorite 311 album, or at least out of the ones I own/have heard (Soundsystem, Blue Album, Don't Tread On Me, Evolver, From Chaos, Omaha Sessions, and this one).

December 21st 2006


"Many critics say Transistor is one of 311 worst albums however; this is 311 best album ever including the new album Don't Tread On Me."

What I heard:

Many recognized critics say Transistor sucks but I'm going to come out of left field and say it's 311's best work ever as well as Don't Tread On Me, which is also the best 311 album ever.

I found this review to be a wee bit biased as I am a huge 311 fanboy myself and think this album is great. I've yet to use my own ranking system to give this a rating but off the top of my head it gets a 4/5 from me. Some of these songs were rated way too high and I think you like some songs for the wrong reasons.

July 5th 2007


Album Rating: 4.5

This is, without a doubt, the best 311 album so far. It's experimental and it also has a darkness to it that makes the album very beautiful. It seemed that the band was trying to construct an album rather than write some songs and put them on an album like they did with their earlier releases. Well they definitely hit the mark with this one. Prisoner, Running, & Stealing Happy Hours are the best songs from this.

September 8th 2007


Good album. I got it the other weekend and although I don't this it is a classic album, or a perfect album I still think that it is a strong effort by 311.

April 6th 2008


Album Rating: 4.0

This one started me on 311. I later fell for their earlier work because it was more indicative of my own musical ambitions which were certainly not as polished. Without this album I would have never found the Suicide Machines, Sublime, and finally my real musical love, 2-tone. Nice Review.

August 11th 2008


Album Rating: 5.0

This is my favorite 311 album for sure.

August 28th 2008


Album Rating: 5.0

One of the most perfect albums

October 14th 2008


Album Rating: 4.0

Very solid for a 21 song album. Its pretty consistent, there are no bad tracks at all but unfortunately there is rarely any amazing tracks.

That said songs like Beautiful Disaster, Light Years and The Continuous Life are some of the bands finest tracks.

I usually think track-by-track reviews are shit and unecessary, even more so when the album has 21 songs on it. But not too bad.This Message Edited On 10.14.08

Royd Rage
October 16th 2008


i love this album,my first rock album,it changed my life!

December 22nd 2008


Album Rating: 4.5

Yes this is the most amazing album they have ever done because every song is nothing like the last. I would give it a 5/5 but honestly, not every song should be rated so high because there was some parts I was like "why did you put that in there?". But at the same time the b-sides were amazing and should have been on the album. So the review is good, but not great.

May 13th 2009


Album Rating: 5.0

Starshines will forever be awesome.

What Was I Thinking is perfect in every way.

Running is elite.

For a band to release a 21 track cd and draw you inside every one...

June 3rd 2009


Album Rating: 5.0

Also, how can What Was I Thinking not be a 5? Think about that.

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