The Smith Street Band’s More Scared of You Than You Are of Me focuses on the different types of relationships we have between people, from lovers to haters to the relationship we have with ourselves.
Track one, “Forrest,” starts the album off with a fast-paced banger. It provides a great taste of who The Smith Street Band is – both fast, crashing instrumentals with vocals to match and a slower, more drawn out sound in the same song. “Death to the Lads” is a fun sing along with depressing lyrics about growing up and realising “things get better, but they never get good.” Laura Stevenson and Tim Rogers are brought in to sing on “Run into the World,” a song about having conflicting thoughts and the realisation something you’re doing is bad for you, yet you keep going. To match the more bleak lyrics, the song features distorted-sounding guitar throughout the song, including on the buildup of the bridge, which comes to a sudden halt, that’d make a great ending to the song, but another chorus is added after a moment of silence. The following song, “Shine,” is about not letting others bring your spirits down and feels cathartic and rejuvenating. “It Kills Me to Have to Be Alive” is the most personal, talking about being unwell. Lyrics like “I’m sorry that I can’t be what everybody wants from me” are matched with acoustic guitar and strings, until the song builds into a full band sound and back to solely the acoustic guitar, giving the song a rounded, complete feeling. The album closer “Laughing (Or Pretending to Laugh)” tells of a love interest in New York and not quite wanting to leave. The song breaks into static as it tapers off, providing a good ending to the song, as it matches the lyrics with sounding like it ends too soon. The whole album has bits of everything, from sing alongs to somber ballads, but I wish each song felt a bit more different from the last.
Overall: More Scared of You Than You Are of Me is a great listen for fans of emo (see: Modern Baseball, Sorority Noise), any song on the album is going to give a good representation of The Smith Street Band.
Review by Shane Haley