Band – Letters of Transit
Album / Label – The Endless Search For Something New
 / Independent
Rating – 6.5 / 10


“Rock is dead they say…”

Far too often, I hear the same narrative from music outlets trying to stir the pot and generate clicks to their web pages. The people writing the articles will try to find some musician who will agree with them, all in an effort to get fans to flock to their site to argue. It would seem that as long as there are people arguing for both sides, rock and roll will never truly die.

Living in Columbus, I can personally attest to the fact that rock music is certainly not dead. In recent months this year, we’ve covered groups like Daymare, Absolute Hero, Zoo Trippin’, Mississippi Bones, Local Tourists, Bava Choco, etc. I could go on, but I think you get the point. Whether they’ve been around for a long time or are newly formed, they all subscribe to the fact that great rock music is where it’s at. And that’s most definitely an ideal we can get behind here at Music In Motion Columbus.

This week, I have the pleasure of introducing you to one of the newer acts keeping the rock flowing through our veins, Letters of Transit. The group stated that they formed through a Craigslist ad in 2016 and chose their name because it is unique, befitting their brand of sound. The group consists of Jack Storey on vocals and rhythm guitar, JC Young on lead guitar, Donny Phillips on bass and Aaron Spencer on the drums.

They played their first show in February, 2018, and through relentless self-promotion have built a small but powerful fan-base. The group enlisted the help of the legendary Joe Viers at Sonic Lounge Studios to put together their debut EP, “The Endless Search for Something New.” It was released July 13, 2018, and has received a lot of airplay on internet radio stations in its brief history.

The record opens with a great riff on Home, Again, along the lines of Airbourne’s “Stand up for Rock’n’Roll,” which I feel is a solid comparison for all of the songs on this record. Storey lets the words fly fast and furious, which has a pulsing back-beat from Phillips and Spencer. But, it is the lead riff that will stick in your head for days.

Selected lyrics from “Alive with Something Violent”
(Image courtesy of Letters of Transit)

Up next, it’s All the Time, which opens with Storey screaming “I, I am angry, I am angry all the time. Can we start from the ending, I’m beginning to unwind.” It’s a passionate song that drips with angst and power. It’s the kind of tune you hear on a record, immediately telling yourself that this is something you need to experience live. The band kicks into overdrive on the chorus as Spencer works his way around his kit.

The band steps up the tempo a notch on the aptly titled Go! At the 1:40 mark, it flies off the rails with punk-rock flair and leaves you wishing for more once it’s all said and done. The band reminds me of a mix between Day of Fire and Finger Eleven; the latter especially when I hear Storey sing.

To cap things off we have Alive with Something Violent, a perfect title for the sonic attack they lay down within. It’s a furious and frenetic song with a couple of tremendous solos from Young featured, while the rest of the group hammer their message into your brain. Storey has a passionate voice and is quite eloquent in driving his message home on this one.

The EP clocks in at just over 14 minutes, which doesn’t leave a lot of room for extra frills or nonsense. The quartet keeps things tight and don’t take their foot off the accelerator from the opening riff to the final feedback buzz.

It’s always good to find a new band who isn’t messing around when it comes to making straight-forward, riff heavy rock music with poignant lyrics.  They may not have met through conventional means, but have sure found a way to mesh quickly and make things sound good all the way through.

Ed. – The band is celebrating their debut EP with a record release party on August 30, 2018 at Ace of Cups, with support from Why Omen and Henodus.

Tracklist

  1. Home, Again
  2. All the Time
  3. Go!
  4. Alive with Something Violent

Letters of Transit – Alive with Something Violent