Dizmas' chaotic post-hardcore sound evolved in nearly every way on its second go-around, the sophomore effort Tension. Not only did Zach Zegan's vocals carry more weight, but the band's songwriting improved to showcase a mastery of subjects both light and heavy. The group stuck with a production mix that favored the guitar work of Jon T. Howard and Josh Zegan rather than the typical hardcore bass/drums emphasis. The result was a triumphantly intelligent hard rock record that wove together the emo-rock of Taking Back Sunday and Story of the Year with values-based lyricism. One of the more mature songs on the album, "Play It Safe," is an acknowledgement of the tensions in our lives and the backlash that happens when we ignore them. One of the few ballads, "If You Love Someone," admits that letting go is an essential step in a relationship. "Dance" is an infectious dare to get off your feet but, on a deeper level, a metaphor for seizing life by the reins. Dizmas' improvement over its freshman album was monumental, as was the band's ability to create an intriguing, emotive collection of hard rock.
AllMusic Review by Jared Johnson