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Mace & Crown | April 24, 2018

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Balance and Composure Rock Shaka's Live

Lindsey Lanham | A&E Editor

Brandishing black X’s on their hands like medals of honor, groups of people crowded around the stage at Shaka’s Live anxiously awaiting for the show to start. People of all ages flocked to Virginia Beach to see a rock band, including a child no more than five strapped to his mother’s back.

The child, decked out in Vans shoes and a black beanie, couldn’t care less that punk rock legends, Balance and Composure, was performing right in front of him. While he played Pokémon, his mom sang along, belting out lyrics like “Undress me, the lights low / I’m dying in your bedroom.”

Before Balance and Composure took the stage and made it their own, opening bands Queen of Jeans and From Indian Lakes warmed up the crowd. Queen of Jeans, a female fronted band, played their ‘60s inspired rock, impressing the crowd with their vocal range and their retro vibes.

From Indian Lakes, an indie rock band from California, was second to take the stage. A different sound from Queen of Jeans and Balance and Composure, the group had their own following at the show. Fans sang along to their songs and cheered when they finished performing. Lead singer Joey Vannucchi offered a quirky, yet endearing, “thank you” at the end of their set.

Balance and Composure wasted no time jumping into their set, starting off with song “Midnight Zone.” Wearing a sweater, frontman Jon Simmons, didn’t stop as he blew through the first three songs.

Simmons, belted out “Come close, stay far / I’ll be your tiny raindrop,” during “Tiny Raindrop,” as the crowd started crowdsurfing and moshing. Happy that the crowd was enjoying the show, Simmons still had to stop the show and ask that the crowd keep it tame so everyone could enjoy the concert.

Made up of Simmons, Erik Petersen (guitar), Andy Slaymaker (guitar), Matt Warner (bass) and Bailey Van Eillis (drums), Balance and Composure formed in 2007. Well known on the punk rock scene, the group have released three full-length albums and five EPs since they first came together. Their latest album, “Light We Made” was released last October.

Balance and Composure continued to play hits like “Postcard” and “Run From Me.” There wasn’t a slow moment as the band played, each song seemed to be a crowd pleaser and the audience wasn’t afraid to get rough.

As the show went along, the crowd continued to mosh and crowd surf, prompting Simmons to repeatedly ask them to calm down. At one point, someone kicked Simmons’ microphone off, and Simmons finished the song with no sound.

After the mic was turned back on, Balance and Composure finished the show strong closing with songs “Reflection” and “I Tore You Apart in My Head.” Both instant crowd pleasers, everyone sang along as Simmons crooned, “I cave in, ran out of miracles / Reflection, who do I really see?”

“I Tore You Apart in My Head” may have caused the most rough moshing of the night. An intense, borderline metal track, the crowd didn’t hold back as Balance and Composure rocked out. Simmons sings “Thank God I’m leaving all your deceiving / You broke me with your ignorance,” as the crowd chanted the words back to him.

Aside from the rough crowd, Balance and Composure brought a great show. Though the kid playing Pokémon didn’t seem to care, the rest of the crowd continued to rock out. If the deafening applause at the end of the show is anything to go by, Virginia Beach would welcome back Balance and Composure anytime.