Album Review: Balance and Composure – Light We Made

By Devon Hannan, Features Editor

[Vagrant; 2016]

Rating: 6/10

Key Tracks: “Mediocre Love,” “Postcard,” “Loam”

Whether we want to believe it or not, our favorite bands are changing, and just like everybody else, Balance and Composure decided that they didn’t want to be post-hardcore anymore. The bigger question is, why is everyone trying to revive shoegaze?

Turnover has been one of the only bands to successfully break from the pop-punk crowd and still create fantastic music. Title Fight didn’t have it together for HyperviewCitizen’s Everybody is Going to Heaven was a disappointment as well, and Light We Made is no exception. The tracks on this album lack diversity and mull together. Light We Made just seems like a last ditch effort from Balance and Composure to appeal to a more mature and melancholy audience.

Unfortunately, the appeal of Balance and Composure was the abrasive and immature tonality. Nobody listened to Balance and Composure to feel wholesome. In fact, Light We Made simply takes away the build and angst in the band’s 2013 release, The Things We Think We’re Missing, making it a carbon copy of that album’s most mundane and toned down moments. Light We Made makes a turn for ambiance, yet it’s hard to feel much of anything.

All things considered, this album isn’t unlistenable. Light We Made’s lyricism is strong and almost poetic at times. “Mediocre Love,” for example, is a very well put together track. The echoing ambiance is very smooth and carries the line, “Mediocre loving ways can make you come undone / Our flower blooming window sill is laying in the sun,” effortlessly. The final track, “Loam” is easily the most interesting and dark track on the album, almost throwing the listener for a loop and wishing that the rest of the album followed suit.

In short, Balance and Composure is just filling the mold that so many bands before them have already casted. By taking away their classic angsty allure, Light We Made falls flat. Lacking ingenuity and differentiation is the main factor leading to this album’s demise, and while this album isn’t entirely awful, it definitely isn’t groundbreaking either.

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