When God Was Great

The Mighty Mighty Bosstones

Big Rig/Hellcat, 2021

http://www.bosstonesmusic.com

REVIEW BY: Pete Crigler

ORIGINALLY PUBLISHED: 06/03/2021

Well….The Bosstones are back with their eleventh studio album and this is as mixed a bag as you can possibly get. The album is all over the place and very rarely does it bring up the glories of the band’s past.

Opening track “Decide” is a throwback to the band’s past and it’s one of the best songs here. Full of horns and energy, the band remind listeners new and old how they’ve managed to stay semi-relevant as the third wave of ska went back into the recesses of popularity.

Songs like “Move” and “The Killing Of Georgie (Part III)” show the band struggling to update their sound away from their punk roots and becoming more pop accessible. The latter song is quite egregious, a lament for George Floyd and trying to call for unity throughout this divided country. A video that just features dancer Ben Carr happily bouncing and bopping around Boston just rubbed a lot of people the wrong way. It comes across as very earnest but incredibly lame and tone-deaf at the same time. These guys are in their fifties and were never political, but they’re trying to make up for lost time. my_heart_sings_the_harmony_web_ad_alt_250

Even “I Don’t Believe in Anything,” a great upbeat rocker, mentions the lockdown and you have to wonder if the band was trying to jump on the bandwagon about writing about life during quarantine and not really succeeding at it.

The slower songs like “Certain Things” really drag the album down with the presence of steel guitars that feel woefully out of place. This doesn’t add anything to the attempted poignancy of the track and makes it one of the worst tracks here. Pretty much anything after this song kinda sucks and should be avoided.

The band has seemingly lost their edge and are trying to keep with newer bands such as the Interrupters. A cover of Creedence Clearwater Revival’s “Long As I Can See the Light” really rubs me wrong because this band’s covers were always cool and unique and this one just sucks and is boring as hell. I thought the appearance of longtime guitarist Nate Albert’s name on “The Truth Hurts” would be a bright spot for the record because he brought so much punk energy to the band but nope, not here. This one is just another middle of the road pop song that goes nowhere. Even the album’s closing opus, “The Final Parade,” featuring at least 25 members of bands like Interrupters, Rancid, Fishbone, and others goes nowhere and it just completely sucks what’s left of this record out and leaves behind a withering carcass of a once great band.

Rating: C-

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