undercover - balance of power

UNDERCOVER
Balance Of Power
Broken
1990

I understand that, for many old school Christian punk fans out there, they remember Undercover as that California surf punk band with a thin New Wave shellac, and album and song titles that can double as nifty bumper sticker slogans. For me, though, my first exposure to the band known as Undercover was by way of the song “World Come Crashing Down” that was included on the Ultimate Metal 2 compilation that Star Song Records put out around that time. It wasn’t too bad…though calling it “metal” seemed a bit of a stretch. Of course, I had no knowledge of the band at the time, and didn’t really start seeking out their discography and history until some time later.

Balance Of Power was the album that was released after 1986’s Branded, which many consider the transition album that saw Undercover segue from a happy New Wave-y punk band to a darker, more introverted post punk alternative band, much like The Cult. Balance Of Power continued on in that darker path, resulting in an album that is dark, moody and probably the heaviest they released thus far.

The music on Balance Of Power is dark, heavy and…quite frankly, fantastic. It’s brooding, crammed with great guitar riffs with the perfect type of vocals that complement the introspectively dark lyrics. Front to back, I found Balance Of Power pretty solid, some massive comparisons to The Cult when it comes to describing this type of Gothic-style hard rock.

It’s been said that Ojo Taylor considers Balance Of Power his least favorite Undercover album. Maybe it was due to the circumstances happening that resulted in the darker vibe and writing, I don’t know. I have to say, personally, that Balance Of Power ranks as one of my favorite darker works, and joins the likes of L. S. U. and Dead Artist Syndrome when I get in the kind of a mood. Which is frequent, in case you’re wondering. Recommended.

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