Day Fifteen: “Listen & Forgive” – Transit

This album is so good I remember exactly where I was when I heard it (the dining table of the house I lived in while I was in Tampa). My introduction to Transit came with their mostly acoustic EP, Something Left Behind. Between its musicianship, lyricism, and overall feel, it quickly became one of my favorite releases at the time. Then Listen & Forgive came out and I listened to it religiously for a year and a half.

From the very outset of “You Can’t Miss It” you know you’re in for a good time. The drums get you hyped, the guitars kick into gear, and you can’t help but to jump around and sing along…even if you’re driving.

The guitar work on this album is brilliant. There are unique and nuanced riffs, tapping harmonics, hammer-ons as well as pull-offs. Not to mention the tones are beautiful. Torre and Tim’s Vox Virages sound so luscious, you want to eat them. Lyrically, Joe has got some wit here. Whereas Young New England contains more stories, Listen and Forgive plays on words and turn of phrases. Using similes and metaphors, he creates powerful imagery you can relate to. Joe and Tim are such a vocal force to be reckoned with, you can’t help but to be saddened by his recent departure. While there’s some filler (“I Think I Know You”, “Don’t Make a Sound”), I don’t think there’s one bad song here.

Similar to Into It. Over It.’s Proper, this album teaches me a lot about alternate tunings. A good chunk of these songs are in some variation of E, Ab, B, Gb, B, Eb, which creates for a fuller, more open sound. But unlike IIOI, once you’ve found their tuning its easy to work in. From a  lyrical standpoint I admire the poignancy of its figurative language. While I tend to lean towards the literal and obvious, this album challenges me to expand my songwriting skills.

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