Almost every band will have a story about their first ever show. For Boston’s Future Teens, their first show was an unrehearsed three-song set in 2014, taking place in a basement during a Fourth of July BBQ. Since then, the band have come a long way, developing from a “joke band” to one of the most promising up-and-coming emo/punk bands in the DIY scene.
‘Hard Feelings is the landmark that commemorates this journey. Building upon the band’s second EP, ‘Bored and Alone’, this full-length delivers relatable tales of mistakes, heartbreaks, and self-discovery. Opening track ‘Sleep Schedule’ captures this succinctly, detailing lead singer Daniel Radin’s lament at wasting relationship opportunities.
One of the most notable elements of Future Teens is their male/female dynamic, which makes for great pacing and a clear distinction between songs. From a lyrical standpoint, it also provides an offering of varying perspectives on love. This is perhaps most prevalent on ‘Kissing Chemistry’, in which the female leads are beautifully utilised, as Amy Hoffman delves into a heartfelt ballad about the stages of missing an ex. Closing track ‘DTFL’ is another outstanding example, showcasing what Hoffman can do with just her guitar and a microphone.
Despite the heavy emphasis on heartbreak, there’s an obvious layer of catharsis underneath it all. ’Hard Feelings’ feels like essential songwriting at its most fundamental – there’s a need to get these words out as a form of therapy. In a sense, this turns a sad album into a happy album about owning sadness and moulding it into something beautiful.
If ‘Bored and Alone’ saw Future Teens find their footing, then ’Hard Feelings sees them hit the ground running with ten, honest slices of punk rock. If you’re looking for that one break-up album to knock you for six with relatable songs, look no further than ’Hard Feelings’.
‘Hard Feelings’ by Future Teens is released on 29th September on Take This to Heart Records.
Words by Ben Mills (@BenMills28)