Album Review: With Confidence - 'Love and Loathing'
With its sing-along choruses and charming melodies, you’ll be feeling a lot of love and no loathing for this album.
Australian pop-punk trio With Confidence are back with their sophomore effort, ‘Love and Loathing’. Packed full of dazzling melodies and emotive lyrics, this album will provide the soundtrack to your first love, your break-ups, and everything in between. As suggested by the title, the themes of love and loathing are explored throughout the album, with the two themes often intertwined. Bassist and vocalist Jayden Seeley explained that these final themes weren’t clear until they had finished most of the tracks. “There's a looming relationship with loathing, mostly about the concept of self-loathing,” says Seeley.
The album begins on a positive note, with catchy single ‘That Something’. It’s like a blast of summer breeze, as you’re hit with exuberant guitar melodies and uplifting vocals. The track is sure to put a smile on your face immediately with it’s charming lyrics, and the romantic tone lacing the lyrics doesn’t escape unnoticed. Following on is the equally charming ‘Sing To Me’, and it’s a track that’s sure to leave your heart fluttering. A breezy introduction will gently carry you into the track, and the chorus is absolutely luscious. There’s a hint of a hopeless romantic character to this track, but honestly you won’t mind, and you’ll find that you won’t be able to get enough of the sweetness of this track. Rougher vocals creep in during the bridge, but this is immediately juxtaposed with the return of the chorus, as the instruments fade out and leave ambient electronics which create an angelic, ethereal feel. A drum beat brings back all of the instruments, and you’re left with happy feelings.
The mood shifts with ‘Moving Boxes’, a slightly slower track that will pierce through you with it’s aching riffs and leans more towards the theme of loathing. There’s a swap of vocals in the second verse, bringing in a different vocal texture which is perfectly suited for this track. You’ll get shivers down your spine as exposed high vocals kick in towards the end without warning, leaving you to ponder on the themes that are explored in this track.
Prepare to sing along to ‘The Turnaround’, which just oozes summer vibes with it’s poppy hooks, whilst ‘Jaded’ return to their pop-punk roots with it’s grounded drumming that drives the track forward. This is balanced by more delicate moments on the album such as ‘Spinning’, which will make you crave for love. Meanwhile, tracks such as ‘Bruise’ and ‘Better’ will have you struggling to hold back tears as the tracks share it’s aching with you, letting the emotions resonate. ‘Dopamine’ lifts the mood with an exuberant guitar melody that shines through, and it will warm your heart with complimentary lyrics such as “You are golden and you are flowing through me. You are ecstasy, you are my dopamine”. As we finish with ‘Tails’, With Confidence pull out one more surprise in the outro as they slow everything down, and distant vocals and acoustic guitars round off the twelve tracks. There’s a moment for everyone in this album, and there’s no doubt that you will fall head-over-heels for it.
Words by Athena Kam