Boston Manor are a band from Blackpool that broadly straddle the pop punk and emo genres. They are currently signed to Failure by Design Records, previously having released an EP and split with Throwing Stuff. They have continued to build on the success of Here/Now with a new six track release titled Driftwood due for release mid-October. Driftwood has an upbeat pop-punk sound with heartfelt lyrics that is overall faster than their previous releases and the vocals are certainly stronger. It has all the passion of Boston Manor but it has a new kind of energy and tightness that show how Boston Manor have grown as a band.
From the beginning, the vocals are stronger and more assertive and the sound is overall tighter. The first track Salt Water is a short introduction to the EP with the catchy melody “I’m not scared, I’m terrified.” The pace picks up for Peach State and remains pretty consistent – sounding similar to The Story So Far and Transit. The title track Driftwood is definitely the strong point of the album. The sixth and final song Square One is the perfect ending to a great record. The EP touches on typical pop punk frustrations – “you’re only 22 with the whole world chasing you” in Wolf is furthered with the nostalgia for younger days of closing track, Square One. That’s not forgetting a few lines about drinking coffee, friends and songs that are perhaps more Moose Blood-esque. Driftwood is filled quiet self-reflection and introspection alongside fast driving riffs. What separates Boston Manor from any kind of cliché is most definitely the authenticity of the record; it is fairly simple but deeply personal and fun to listen to. These are high energy songs that are clearly made for heartfelt sing-alongs and fist pumping. After seeing Boston Manor on their tour with Muncie Girls and Throwing Stuff, they certainly do not disappoint on stage.
Comparisons between Boston Manor and bands like Gnarwolves and Moose Blood at this point seem obvious but they are both a perfect example of bands that straddle a few genres and as such they have a wide appeal. They have made their success so far through hard work, good songs and fun live shows. They are breaking their way into a big scene that has given so much success to similar UK bands and they have all the potential to succeed in the same vein. Boston Manor’s EPs are continually getting better, showing the potential for the band to develop their sound. I hope to see Driftwood push them over the edge.