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Do Future Teens hate Boston? Nope, but they know that a lot of people certainly do, for better or for worse. So they saw a merchandising opportunity.
The self-described “bummer-pop” quartet from Boston will be selling pink and blue hats that affectionately read “Boston Sucks” on their upcoming Summer Smash tour. The run, innocently enough, starts Friday night (July 6) at ONCE Somerville but, after a handful of New England dates, takes them to places where Boston isn’t too beloved or highly thought of, like Brooklyn, Jersey City, and Philadelphia (hello Super Bowl LII).
According to Future Teens, however, the head gear is less of an insult and more of a mini-commentary on the people who write Boston off so easily without actually getting to know the city.
“It’s actually a reference to one of our songs, ‘In Love or Whatever’ which pokes fun and references folks who move to Boston for college without exploring further than their campus and then determine that ‘Boston Sucks,’” explains vocalist and guitarist Daniel Radin.
The song is from Future Teens’ first full-length album Hard Feelings, released last September. “I try to steer the conversation somewhere else/But it’s obvious it’s not going to help,” Radin sings about a specific “Boston Sucks” exchange on a date with an unnamed recent college grad. The millennial satire continues on tracks like “What’s My Sign Again?”, an astrology-based courtship conundrum.
“We like to say that while some of the critiques of what sucks about Boston we agree with (gentrification, lack of public school funding, segregation etc.), a lot of the critiques of Boston are why we love it so much,” Radin elaborates via email. “For example, bars close early (who needs to be up past 2 a.m. anyway?), it’s really small (who doesn’t love a good walking city?), it’s not New York City (self-explanatory).”
Of course, the hats are all in good fun. But we’re sure the crowds down in the New York and Philadelphia areas will eat it up. “We hope people don’t take offense to it, as it is definitely tongue and cheek and we really do LOVE Boston,” Radin says. “But we also don’t recommend wearing the hats to a Red Sox game.”