Loneliness and regret are two emotions that often follow a breakup and they can tug your other emotions all over the place. This is something that Stephen Lind explores in his EP Comfort Zone. While considering these emotions and the impact they have on life, he also looks at how easy it is to get stuck in something that seems safe.
Drawing on personal experience, Lind creates a connection with the past, while helping listeners move on and leave it behind. Bringing dreamy synths to electronic beats, he lays out the journey of moving on and leaving the past in the past. While there are a lot of negative emotions woven into the music, there is light throughout that lets you know you are strong enough to get through what you are feeling.
The EP starts with ‘Kicking Myself’ and its vibrating bass. The bass vibrates through your chest, but rises into a dancing pop tone as the bright synths come in. There is a bright feel to the music that makes you want to move and dance to the rhythm. The bright colours of the music weave between the negative emotions of the lyrics that come through light dancing vocals. There is a catchiness to the music that has your foot tapping to the beat, while you sing along. The lyrics are conflicted as they want to stay in a situation that is deemed safe, but acknowledge that they have lost a piece of themselves through this.
The soft tones that open ‘Anxiety’ are gentle and soothe something deep in your chest. This makes the electronic-tinged vocals more powerful as they enter and swipe the softness away. The melodic movement this causes is a perfect sonic representation of anxiety and how it impacts your emotions. The beats that come through later are like a racing heartbeat that shake you up. While there is a heavy dose of anxious feelings and racing heartbeats in the track, there is something stronger making its way through. Confronting the anxious emotions through the vocals strangely seems to ease the feeling and helps you to build the strength to push through.
‘Just Another Night’ helps you relax after the outpour of emotions in the last track. The lightness of the opening rolls into bursting electronic pop tones that fill your brain with glittering lights. While the music has you bopping around to a light and upbeat vibe, the lyrics are interesting to listen to. They bring the breakup of the story to life, with a swirl of fights, looking for something bad in a relationship, and a casual acceptance of a somewhat toxic relationship. As the lyrics outline the breakdown and mistakes made in the relationship, the delivery is unbelievably catchy and you are going to find yourself singing along before the end of the track.
Following the breakdown of the relationship in the last track, ‘N.E.E.D.Y.’ looks at living after it. There is a touch of soulful tones to the melody that rides on the edges of pulsing electronic pop tones. While the lyrics have you moving on from the past relationship, there is questioning of whether this is the right move. The vocals are packed with conflicting feelings of moving on and wanting to get back together. The electronic tinge to the vocals brings something extra to the track that makes it even more infectious than the last track. As with the other tracks on the EP, the chorus is really addictive and has you bouncing to it while singing along.
The journey to move on continues with the slightly retro opening tones of ‘(Opening Up My) Feelings’. The retro synths become lighter as a more modern beat and glittering wash of electronics take over the melody. While the last track battles between moving on and getting back together, this track is the next step to moving away from the relationship, and understanding that there is light at the end of the tunnel. The vocals are introspective as they consider the struggle to open up again after being in one situation for so long. Through all of this, a dance vibe hooks into your brain and gets your muscles moving around to the song.
The EP comes to an end with the dramatic flair of ‘Meet Me All Alone’. The electronic tones build on each other to create a majestic, yet dramatic, feeling that rises from the depths. While there is a feeling of empowerment in the opening melody, this drops for something rather pleading later on. This is picked up by the lyrics and vocals that call for a reconciliation and the need to be with someone you are no longer with. This is something that a lot of people can relate to as an ex can draw you back to them, like a moth to a flame. There is a really heartfelt tone to the vocals that enhances the power of the emotions woven into the vocal performance.
Stephen Lind tries to move on from a breakup through the dancing electronic tones of Comfort Zone, while feeling the pull to get back together. Each track on the EP fills you with the emotions felt after a breakup, from loneliness to an urge for reconciliation. His vocals bring the emotions of the tracks to sonic glory, while pushing you to sing along.