Release Date: Dec 3, 2013
Record label: Frontiers
Genre(s): Pop/Rock, Contemporary Pop/Rock, Album Rock, Arena Rock
Thanks to the meticulous approach Tom Scholz takes when recording Boston albums, every album since their second one, 1978's Don't Look Back, has taken nearly a decade to see the light of day. It's no different with 2013's Life Love & Hope, which follows cold on the heels of 2002's Corporate America. Using a crew of vocalists including longtime collaborator Brad Delp (who tragically committed suicide in 2007) and cleanly processed layers of guitars, keys, and drums much the same way he always has, a majority of the album plays like vintage Boston -- especially the tracks that feature Delp, like the aching love song "Didn't Mean to Fall in Love," which borrows heavily from "More Than a Feeling," and a new version of Corporate America's "Someone.
Five songs on Boston's first album in more than a decade have "love" in their titles; three revise songs from its predecessor, Corporate America. That album came out in 2002, five years before Brad Delp committed suicide. His singing survives on a few tracks here, surrounded by other reassuring voices, male and female. "Didn't Mean to Fall in Love" keeps "More Than a Feeling" chords alive, too; "Sail Away," inspired by Hurricane Katrina, moves from trip-hop to prog-metal.
As the years go by, it’s more clear than ever that Brad Delp was one of rock’s greatest pure singers. His death in 2007 created a huge void for the band Boston. Founder/producer Tom Scholz (above) does his best to compensate with multiple replacement singers on this new album (Boston’s first in 11 years), but it’s the three carryover songs with Delp that provide the most buzz.
In the late ’70s, if you loved Black Flag, which was led by the guitarist and songwriter Greg Ginn, it generally meant that you had some thoughts about corruption and complacency in American culture, and that you hated expensive-sounding rock bands like Boston, which was led by the guitarist and ….