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In a society buoyed by lies, it takes strength to confront the truth. Unlovely, the third full length album from Calin “Callie” Peters (vocals, cello, bass), Martin Earley (vocals, guitar), and Devin Mauch (vocals, percussion), isn’t about the complete absence of beauty. Instead, the eleven tracks on The Ballroom Thieves latest LP are a sonic encapsulation of emotional and political dissonance, the constant state of discomfort that’s enveloped the world for the past few years.
“We write about the things that are important to us and right now, it’s impossible to ignore the inadequate state of the world,” says Earley. “We just wrote the songs that came out of us and they happened to be largely political.” He continues, “In an ideal world, we would never write a political record—there’d be nothing extreme enough to warrant it.”
Tackling subjects as weighty as greed, inequality, privilege, and narcissism, and as light as fulfillment and adoration, Unlovely offers a track for every occasion, whether you’re furious, depressed, exhausted, or hopeful. Songs like “Homme Run” and the title track boil over with exasperation and disgust, rage and resentment running through every line in protest of today’s global status quo. Others like “Love is Easy” and “Tenebrist” turn the focus inward onto doubts of purpose and identity.