ALBUM REVIEW: Transit Method – Othervoid

Music that’s right here, right now, with echoes of glories past. A dream of an album that takes off fast, edgy, in a punky rush, sounding like … a punky Rush

Or Stiff Little Fingers meets Porcupine Tree … a Stiff Little Porcupine Tree Fingers! Or something. (Answers on a postcard to Punk/Prog Band Morphs, Reid Towers, care of Ghostcult).

Transit Method’s Prog-tastic Othervoid (Brutal Panda Records) is a breath of fresh air, driven by a steampunk, Alt-Rock power source that crosses the streams, molds into a hybrid form and proves to be rich, ripe and relevant. 

This Austin, TX-outfit have already been compared to Jane’s Addiction, Mastodon and Mutoid Man – brash, beautiful and raucous. Opener “Into Your Mind” recalls the ebullient squall of the wild that is “Call Of The Void”, from the Mutoids’ splendid Mutants album.

For me, the Rush comparisons are most valid, in some lyrics (“Anxiety is on the rise, The stars are misaligned …” sings Matt LoCoco) and in the edgy, chopping, marching guitars. Any reference to that particular trio of Canadian legends sets the bar high, but there are crash mats available, and no one involved is a (Fosbury) flop.

“Frostbite”, an elemental epic, running at 8:50, even has a faux-Reggae section. What next, a Rush-style “Roll The Bones” Rap, as well as “Digital Man” Reggae? Fuck The Police!

There is no Rap on Othervoid but there is lots of variety, and all the elements work as the Transit boys operate wonderfully well together. This comes across as a proper band album, everyone locked on the same page and reaching, grasping for the prize.

Transit Method are now a four-piece, Matt joined by new and fellow lead guitarist Bryan Rolli, with Charlie Anderson (yes, the Panopticon violinist) on bass and Matt’s brother Mike present and correct on drums.

In the past, they have been described as “Punk Metal” as often as “Prog Metal”, and such genre mash-ups can often result in a muddle of confusion and obfuscation, compromising not just your music-loving ears and the interpretive part of your brain but your whole head, like Kylie Minogue being teabagged by King Kong

Othervoid is less ball sack and more Balzac, less obscurity and more integrity, and more real, human detail (“We’re savage creatures, Take a crack at my soul, I see you look right through me, Your judgment pierces deeply, On display day after day …”).

With this red-hot album, and leaving all the comparisons and pigeon-holing aside, the Transits take a timely and vital step to establishing a new and coherent voice of their very own.

Every song has a clear and proper throughline and an evident mission to assess, decide, deliver … to entice, engage and excite.

Ace geetarists LoCoco and Rolli, interestingly different musicians, trade solos, sharing the fretboard limelight on “Nightmare Machines” and “Psychometry” (superior snare sound, destined to be a fave live anthem), with Rolli particularly impressing on “The Outside”.

“Savage Creatures” is off-the-scale brilliant. “Another Wasted Life” rides along on an irresistible, chug-chug rhythm and the aforementioned closer, “Frostbite”, with more solos, will simply leave you wanting even more. 

Over to you, LoCoco, LoCoco & Co!

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9 / 10