The term “breakup album” is a label that many outlets have used to describe records they believe carry an emotional depth, one that resonates with anyone that has recently called it quits with their partner. It can either be uplifting or can let listeners wallow in their despair. ‘Love is Not Enough’, the debut album from South Wales quintet Casey firmly sits in the latter camp.
Admittedly, the concept of a hardcore group releasing an emotional album concerning a failed relationship isn’t going to make anyone flip out, but ‘Love is Not Enough’ really takes the subject to heart. Vocalist Tom Weaver’s lyrics come from a place of doubt in relationships, where the consistent outpourings of disappointment hits as hard as most bands that play beatdowns for a living.
Hearing the middle verse to ‘Little Bird’ (“Our hearts lay on the bedroom floor, one was mine, but both were you”) leaves you weaker and more beaten until it dominates you. By the time ‘Haze’ launches into its centrepiece, (“You married him in the backyard of the house we built with our bare hands where you said we’d grow old together”) the band sink to a low that makes Capsize sound like ‘I Get Wet’ by Andrew W.K.
Of course, this internal dissection is backed by a strong band performance, balancing hard riffs built on sturdy melodies with graceful flourishes of lead guitars that build into colourful walls of sound. It drives both the aggression and delicacy Weaver tackles the album with.
When you listen to the sincerity of Casey, you begin to understand this music has to exist as a form of catharsis for its creators. Bitterness runs through the album’s lifeblood, dispelling love as little more than bits of affection given in return for insecurity and emotional numbness. ‘Love Is Not Enough’ probably won’t make a list of best breakup albums, but it’s one of the legitimate.
‘Love Is Not Enough by Casey is released on September 23rd on Hassle Records.
Words by Andrew Davidson (@AndyrfDavidson)