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Balance and Composure

Balance and Composure - with you in spirit (Pre-order)

Balance and Composure - with you in spirit (Pre-order)

Regular price $30.00 USD
Regular price Sale price $30.00 USD
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Please Note, this item is for PRE-ORDER! All items are expected to ship by OCTOBER 4, 2024. *Any orders containing a "Pre-Order" item will ship together when the pre order ships. Please make a separate order if you wish to receive non pre-order items before the pre-order ship date.* Please allow 2-3 weeks for delivery. 

Pink & Purple Galaxy Swirl Variant from Banquet Records available to UK Customers Here.

UK/EU: Order this from Devil Dog Distro Here.

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ain't it sweet
any means
cross to bear
believe the hype
lead foot
sorrow machine
a little of myself
closer to god
with you in spirit

Pressing Info
Lavender in Clear with Blue Splatter / 250 (Memory Music Exclusive)
Pink & Blue Storm Swirl / 700 (Memory Music Exclusive)
Cloudy Baby Blue / 1000
Cloudy Lavender / 1000
Pink, Purple & Blue Stripes / 500 (Memory Shop Exclusive)
Yellow, Red & Black Fire Swirl / 750 (Balance and Composure Exclusive)
Pink & Purple Galaxy Swirl (Banquet Exclusive)

2016’s Light We Made was meant to be the final full-length record from Pennsylvania rock band Balance and Composure. When they announced their breakup in 2019, things weren’t clicking the way they used to; it felt like the group had run out of road. But when the pandemic took hold the following year and ripped away all routine, vocalist and guitarist Jon Simmons started to miss his long-time bandmates. “Once everything is taken away from you, you remember what you like about it, and the pure reasonings of actually just having fun and using music as an outlet,” he says.

Eventually, lead guitarist Erik Petersen reached out to his former bandmates—Simmons, bassist Matt Warner, and guitarist Andy Slaymaker—with a simple question: How would they feel about simply trying to write music together again? Everyone agreed—the absence had weighed heavily on them. Along with new drummer Dennis Wilson, the friends gathered in October 2022 and began to write new songs. “I began to feel like a kid again,” says Simmons. “We were writing these songs for the pure reason of having an outlet and getting together with your friends, no pressure. We were longing for it, and we found it as soon as we got together. We didn’t want that train to stop.”

After a few years of writing over weekend sessions, the band began the long process of recording. For the first time, says Simmons, every decision was mutually agreed upon by all members, making it perhaps the most collaborative period in Balance and Composure history. In 2023, they released the first taste of this new era: the comeback EP Too Quick To Forgive, with two new singles. Now, they’re unveiling their first full-length release in eight years.

with you in spirit, the fourth Balance and Composure LP, is an arresting, atmospheric collection of melodic post-punk and towering rock. The record’s cover photo, taken by Simmons at a family reunion last summer, is a striking capture of the world Balance and Composure have conjured across these 10 songs: while two children play on a lawn excitedly, a summer storm’s dark gray-blue clouds loom in the background. Indeed, with you in spirit thunders and stirs, dipping between beautiful, crystalline arrangements and punishing, earth-shaking climaxes; in between all, a gripping, near-physical tension crackles and growls and grooves, waiting to rip open.

with you in spirit is due out October 4 on Memory Music, the label created by Grammy-nominated producer Will Yip. When Yip heard the band was writing music again, he phoned them up and asked to be involved. “I literally told them I would do anything to be a part of this record,” laughs Yip, who produced the band’s breakout 2013 record The Things We Think We’re Missing along with their 2016 and 2023 releases. “Balance and Composure is one of the most important bands to my career, my life, my production development. When they went away in 2019, I was broken-hearted.”

Yip ended up producing and co-writing the entirety of with you in spirit with the band, over a two year period of weekend work that balanced new responsibilities with the band’s return. “I truly believe that this is the best collection of Balance and Composure songs there’s ever been,” says Yip. “This is their final form. It has the heavy stuff, it has the fast stuff, it has the groovy stuff. It has everything they’ve worked on over the last 12 years.”

It’s an intensely self-reflective record for Simmons, an uprooting and examination of the supports on which a life is built. Preemptive grief, wrestling with god and faith, familial responsibility, familial mortality—these are the things Simmons was carrying while writing this material. They’re also things he was trying, for better and worse, to avoid—hence the record’s title. “I noticed a lot of the theme of what I was writing about was my lack of presence, whether that be with family, friends, loved ones,” says Simmons. “A lot of it is that I struggle to be present when I should be. My defense in a way is to withdraw, and I send love from afar because I can’t personally deal with certain things in person. Maybe I was kind of pretending things aren’t happening at the same time.”

These experiences are interpreted in the record’s brutal, precise lyrics, lines that neither pull punches nor say too much. On a page, they’re razor-sharp; in context, they’re titanic. In its totality, with you in spirit feels like the work of songwriters reaching new heights, exploring new depths. Sometimes, the record itself feels like a band grappling with its own avoidance, its own mortality, and deciding to face these things the only way they know how. Balance and Composure are with us in spirit, yes, but in the flesh, too, for now. “You’re not alone with laments,” Simmons calls in a long, airy phrase midway through the record, “and you don’t belong to the dead yet.”

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