Back onto the scene after a lengthy hiatus, The Beautiful Mistake have released their first new music since 2004 with You’re Not Broken. I Am. Produced by Beau Burchell (Saosin), this short collection of songs shows a lot of promise as the band looks to write the next chapter in their career. The band is comprised of band members Josh Hagquist, Shawn Grover, Josh Quesada, Steve Dunlap, and Jon Berndston, and they seem poised to re-cement themselves into the crowded post-hardcore scene. On this EP, the wide-range emotions felt in their music only speaks to the power of their sound and composure as artists.
Kicking off the set of songs with “Monument,” the band begins a slow-burner of an opener that beautifully unfolds into an explosion of sound at the song’s crescendo. They have truly mastered the soft/loud dynamic that many bands in the scene have emulated, such as Underoath, Silverstein, and Snapcase. The blood-curdling screams from Hagquist balance out the wall of sound from the guitars, and showcase a band getting back to their comfort zone as quickly as possible.
“East of Eden” follows the breakneck opener with some more well-placed screamed vocals that bleed away into a melodic chorus. The track reminded me of some of the great moments on Underoath’s Define the Great Line, and it became abundantly clear of the direction The Beautiful Mistake were going for on this record. Every note seems to be filled with purpose, precision and hits its target more often than not.
“Memento Mori” ended up being my favorite from the EP since the vocals are perfectly timed with the guitar rhythm sections, and the chorus soars to its intended heights. The track even features a creative breakdown in the middle with some acoustic guitar carefully strummed over Hagquist’s screamed vocals.
“Decades Away” is another song that feels like a homecoming of sorts, as the band gets back to the business of what made them such a great band in the first place. By honing in on their influences that made them who they are today, The Beautiful Mistake is able to take the necessary steps forward in their artistic careers as well.
Album closer, “Anger/Courage,” continues to reintroduce the band back to their audience with some excellent guitar work, passionately sung vocals, and excellent percussion as well. The track doesn’t cover much new ground from what the band have put forth in the four other songs on the record, but it does bring closure to the overall message of what it means to rebuild yourself from the abyss.
In a lot of ways, The Beautiful Mistake have done a commendable job of reintroducing themselves to their audience by putting a fresh take on their already powerful sound. Hopefully, the band will continue to use this successful collection of songs as a launchpad for more music as we move into this next decade.