The Mighty Mighty Bosstones | The Magic of Youth

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

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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

  Topics: CD Reviews , Music, The Mighty Mighty Bosstones, The Mighty Mighty Bosstones,  More more >
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