Tuesday, November 23, 2010


Balance and Composure/Tigers Jaw
No Sleep/Run For Cover Records

I got this split for Pennsylvania indie-punk geeks Tigers Jaw, but right now, Balance and Composure's owning it. I guess Tigers Jaw's more weak-wristed blend of hardcore, pop-punk and indie takes a while longer to sneak up. Balance and Composure's half of the split's right in your face. Right from the get-go!

So first off, thanks to Tigers Jaw for leading me to Balance and Composure - the point of any good split, really.

With a gruffer - but equally as thoughtful and intelligent-sounding - approach, Balance and Composure remind me of New York's Polar Bear Club. Their tempos dip and the melodies get washier and more delicate, but they're always followed by hair-raising tussles with reality and highly-detailed, atmospheric "post-hardcore" sounds that wash over 'til the next explosion.

Tigers Jaw's half is more of a grower. Where Balance and Composure hit you in the face with solid heart darts, Tigers Jaw wipe you down with a damp cloth, offering washy, gently-crafted guitar sounds and ultra-sensitive, awkward-sounding Get Up Kids-ish vocals.

Tigers Jaw's last song, "Dent," is their best. The guitars suddenly step forward, the drums pound harder and the music backs up the vocals perfectly, giving the song more feeling than their previous three. With Balance and Composure, every song's a winner, especially track one, "Kaleidoscope."

Balance and Composure on MySpace
Tigers Jawe on MySpace

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