Brand new album, Transitions, in stores September 26th on Hellcat Records!
Nothing can stop Westbound Train. The Boston-based, seven-piece group have put out two albums, a re-release, completed a third to be their Hellcat Records debut, and toured incessantly throughout the US, Europe, and Canada since 2003. It is the forthcoming album, though, entitled Transitions, that is the most honest Westbound work - an explanation of, and experience in, the true Westbound Sound in which the musical era of the 60s reggae, soul, blues is connected with today, building upon influences across further genres, including jazz and country. Transitions, is of course, aptly named. 2005 to 2006 has very much been a time of change and lets just say it transition for the group, as a core member parted from the Westbound family, not to mention the band signing to Hellcat Records. Throughout 2005, the group worked furiously to hone the sound that caught the attention of Hellcats Tim Armstrong one year previously on a demo passed to him at a Transplants show in the bands hometown. A friendship developed and Westbound was invited to California as guests on both the Skinhead Rob album and the then forthcoming major label debut of the Transplants. Despite the excitement of the attention, there was still touring and writing to be done. Westbound Train has shared the stage with The Toasters, The Mighty Mighty Bosstones, The Street Dogs, Reel Big Fish and the originators of Ska Music, The Skatalites. The bands previous releases, Searching for A Melody and more notably Five To Two, included collaborations with King Django and Alex Desert of Hepcat, had gained significant attention and respect, but both were mere glimpses into the capability of each member and the collective group. We want to create honest music for people to put out records that are both beautiful and emotional, says Obi Fernandez, singer/trombonist. On this album, he continues, the songwriting is more honest than Melody or Five to Two and the lyrics tell the stories of the bands experiences. The opening track, Please Forgive Me is a dialogue between the younger generation and the older generation. Its kind of like when the apprentice surpasses his mentor, if the mentor is too prideful that can be a tough thing for him to swallow. For the First Time is about standing by your dreams. Its hard to do what we do, says Fernandez, Its even harder to follow your dreams when your loved ones have a different set of goals for you or dont really understand exactly what it is you are trying to do. The final track Travel On gives great insight into the headspace of the band. Travel on is probably my favorite tracks on the record. The Message is simple; Westbound Train is going to continue doing what we do regardless of whatever obstacles may turn up. We are determined to leave our mark on the music world and we want to accomplish that together as a family. Transitions is about the forward progression of Westbound Train and captures the key changes in the group, both situational and musically. But the focus of Westbounds energy is still the live performance in which they are able to communicate all of this to their ever-growing fan base. On stage, they are focused and professional yet filled with enthusiasm and excitement. Their groove, presence and dynamics are irresistible and far too danceable to ignore. The life and soul of their songs on stage add further depth to the studio recordings, something Transitions captures more significantly than either of the previous releases, creating an entire Westbound Experience both at home and on the road. With all that Westbound Train has gone through this is still only the beginning. Expect the new album, Transitions, out on Hellcat Records this fall 2006.