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Miracle in Transit (2022) Review

Ecstatic House Music Full of Post-Millennial Nostalgia


 By James Wilson


Rating: 4.5/5



I have a friend from back home who, admittedly, knows considerably more about music than myself.


Now and then, this friend will come across a particularly good new album and, in an act of sheer persistence, will not stop sending me said album until I eventually give in and end up listening to it. Miracle in Transit by Naked Flames was one such example album and, in this case, I’m certainly glad I caved.


Falling broadly under the category of “outsider House”, Miracle in Transit manages to be both almost endlessly energetic as well as  remarkably listenable and, despite its near-hyperactive upbeat tone , manages to avoid feeling overbearingly so.


The tracks are lengthy, ranging generally from the six-to-nine-minute mark, creating an entrancing feeling as the music progresses; either through a brilliant assault on the senses with more fast-paced songs, or with more subdued, soothing, gradual tracks. The opening and most popular song ‘Pan Matsuri’ is its most refined and polished, and serves as a good example of the joyous and ethereal mood of the piece as a whole.

Reminiscent of the kind of Electronica which I and many other people my age would have been exposed to during childhood, namely those found in video game soundtracks of the early 2000s as opposed to those found in nightclubs, the album as a whole evokes plenty of dreamy Gen Z nostalgia and rarely (if ever) misses a beat during its fifty-minute runtime.

Songs such as ‘Carrot Car’ and ‘Visiting Corners’ carry all the fun and lightning speed of a Mario Kart course or a level from Sonic the Hedgehog, and sound at times as though they could have been taken right out of said games. ‘Under Every Tree in England’”, possibly my favourite track on the album, then slows the pace with a toned-down ambient sound that slowly, seamlessly escalates as it progresses. After this, the album begins to pick up speed again with ‘Miles of Conkers’, another particularly Nintendo-esque track. This is immediately followed by ‘Taking the Stairs’, where flutes rise and fall with the bass tones, surrounded by shimmering synths. The album closes out with ‘Tennessee Transit’, a fan favourite and a song that my aforementioned friend has sent me a total of five times since they first listened to it. Take what you will from that.


Miracle in Transit is an album which feels both deeply personal and accessible at the same time, reflective of a shared childhood nostalgia, perfect for night-time listening or a lazy Sunday afternoon.

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