Lights and Sounds

Music review by
Kathi Kamen Goldmark, Common Sense Media
Lights and Sounds Music Poster Image
Smart punk-tinged rock & roll for teens.

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A lot or a little?

The parents' guide to what's in this music.

Positive Messages

Intelligent, thoughtful reactions to a very confusing world.


Just a little violent imagery with a non-violence message.


Just the slightest bit of innuendo here and there.


Pretty darn clean.

Drinking, Drugs & Smoking

A couple of references to getting high, coming down, etc.

What parents need to know

Parents need to know that the lyrics are pretty darn clean, especially for punk-tinged rock & roll. There are a couple of references to acts of violence and getting high, and the slightest bit of sexual innuendo.

User Reviews

  • Parents say
  • Kids say
Adult Written bymthschick2006 April 9, 2008


not as good as ocean avenue but decent, only has a couple really good songs
Adult Written bycrazy552 April 9, 2008
Teen, 15 years old Written bydoomcycle1 April 9, 2008
Teen, 15 years old Written byjm4392 April 9, 2008

What's the story?

Yellowcard's best moments are the most surprising ones. It's refreshing to hear a rock group willing to take some musical risks. On their previous album, Ocean Avenue, the surprises were provided mostly by Sean Macklin's violin and the band's wonderful vocal harmonies. On LIGHTS AND SOUNDS, sweeping orchestral strings ride over strong rhythm tracks in rich, imaginative arrangements. The vocal harmonies are as tight as ever, and the violin is still there -– along with some tasteful acoustic guitar, Celtic drums, and a cameo vocal by the Dixie Chicks' Natalie Maines. All combine to produce a lush tapestry of moody sound.

Is it any good?

For punk-influenced rockers, the lyrics are pretty tame, actually maybe even a little vapid. There are a couple of references to acts of violence and getting high, and the slightest bit of sexual innuendo, but the intent seems to be more cautionary tale than titillation. Lyrics like "We lost another one that we sent with a gun / They're gonna miss him he was two weeks from twenty" ("Two Weeks from Twenty") or "The whole world is different now men have died" ("Words, Hands, Hearts") are powerful and honest. The members of Yellowcard seem like intelligent, talented young people trying to make sense of a complex world in difficult times.

Talk to your kids about ...

  • Families can talk about the group's willingness to experiment with unusual instrumentation -- in this case, using orchestral instruments and arrangements on rock songs. Were you surprised by anything you heard here? Did the risks work for you?

Music details

  • Artist: Yellowcard
  • Release date: January 24, 2006
  • Label: Capitol
  • Genre: Rock
  • Parental advisory: No
  • Edited version available: No
  • Last updated: August 4, 2015

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