If you had blinked and missed it, I wouldn’t blame you. The emo supergroup, Bad/Love have come out of nowhere these past few months and made a pretty impressive entrance. Standing tall over their peers with experience in the likes of Dream On Dreamer, Make Them Suffer, Wither, and Like Royals; it is insane to see such a substantial amount of talent within one group. To make matters even better, the band’s first single, “The World in Colour”, featured Northlane’s Marcus Bridge. That is not the extent of this red carpet of music, as their latest single, “Nowhere Else Like Home”, is in-part brought to life by ex-Hellions guitarist Matthew Gravolin.
I could go on for an entire article, as I’m sure some readers know, about accolades that Bad/Love have under their belt, but that’s not what is most impressive to me. I went in blind to Bad/Love, no idea who they were or even who was featuring, and I was blown away. I wondered how a band with two singles could sound like, at least, a decade of hard work. Bad/Love capture a sound that I find hard to categorise; I sat on it for some time before writing this. I eventually came to the conclusion that emotion is what they harness the best and with that, I’m confident to call them 2019’s best emo band.
With an intro that takes me back to mid-2000’s blink-182, I’m already hooked. I’m ready to be sad. Vocalist Landon Kirk’s melodies are as smooth as warm butter, a small shift from their previous single. Everything about the track is so well-arranged. I appreciate the soft tones from guitarist Lachlan Monty, the near-perfect snare pops from Luke Weber, and the rhythmic waves that flow from bassist Zac Noble. The mixing on “Nowhere Else Like Home” is tight, smart, and simple. Throw in a beautiful, unique vocal performance by Gravolin and you’ve got a song that is equal parts harmonic, catchy, and wondrous.
What Bad/Love can say in only a few words, I’m finding myself dwelling on for hours. Months, if not years, of pain is summarised in metaphors of clocks and poisonous bites. My ears are hooked by the simple and catchy flow, but my brain appreciates the layers of thought that play into those easy-to-sing lyrics. “Never wanted to be here” is a brutally honest lyric, and regardless of how sad it may be, I’m glad they are here.
“Nowhere Else Like Home” paints a tragic picture of loss that leaves my heart feeling a little empty, but the comforting vocals and familiar sounds help nurse that despair. Bad/Love feel like friends by my side, helping in a time that’s otherwise leaving me broken. I’m sure we are all “wanting to rewind”, but the message I get is that what we learn when we can’t go back is most important. It is a nod to the people we meet and the experiences we share, had it not been for some pain along the way. “Nowhere Else Like Home” is a ray of light through the clouds, and I’m glad I found it.
To make matters even better, the band have pieced together a debut EP that releases July 5th, entitled SIOIS. That’s a palindrome for all you keen eyed readers at home. As if I wasn’t already giving the band too much credit, 10% of all the EP’s profits are donated to one of four charities of your choice (Beyond Blue, The Brain Foundation, RSPCA, and The Balunu Foundation). Obviously financial gain isn’t the main priority, but for a debut EP that is quite a selfless gesture to make.