It’s not often today you run across a record from 1982 and basically can’t find out anything about it. At all. I mean, I won’t claim to have made some incredibly exhaustive search using every possible keyword I could pull from this album, but I gave it a try. The only person I could even pin down was producer Stephen Hague. As for the band members themselves? Nada. Zero. Zip. I mean, you’d think at least one of them would have shown up in another band that put out an album, but Discogs yielded no obvious hits.
Transport is copyrighted 1982 and appears to be a private press. Was this an audition of sorts? It’s only a five song EP, so it could very well have been intended primarily as something to send to radio stations and record companies, but I don’t know for sure. The songs are pretty standard early new wave – they still have that “darker” sound, especially in the echoey bass and the bare-bones, icy synths. The most distinctive track is “Body Buildings” with it’s stilted, jerky vocal delivery that gives it a futuristic, Devo-esque vibe, though I don’t think it quite got there. There are references to home work, isotopes (“Isotope Tan” – my favorite track), and Ponce de Leon, making me think some of these tunes should have made it onto the soundtracks for Real Genius or Weird Science.
Who were Transport? What happened to keyboardist and backing vocalist Nancy Mitsui? The early 80s were a period when a lot of bands had female members. Did she find her way to another group at some point? Richard di Donato’s bass lines are solid, he surely must have played with some other bands. Did these guys ever get any radio play? Hell, how many copies of this thing even exist?
I have to admit, though, I kinda like not knowing. A little air of mystery is intriguing sometimes. What I do know is that Transport is a decent new wave record, and there easily could have been a minor hit here had they gotten some airplay at the right station, or managed to get a video onto MTV. They had some talent… but like so many bands, they just never got the break they needed to take it to the next level.