Review || Hellions - "Rue"

It has been two years since the Australian pop-rock/post-hardcore band Hellions released their last album "Opera Oblivia", which really got their career going after the band made a name for themselves with their two previous albums ("Indian Summer" and "Die Young"). Now they’re returning with their new album, "Rue", due 19th of October worldwide via UNFD. It’s always hard for a band to meet their fans expectations while evolving their music with new releases, but Hellions seem to be quite good at that -and they’re certainly not afraid to change up their sound. Some songs are heavier than others which has given their previous releases a good mix of both. And this concept seems to be continuing in "Rue" as well.

The album contains 12 tracks and starts with "(Blueberry)" and "Odyssey". I didn’t really expect the album to start in this kind of walzy way, it’s like entering a circus tent. Both tracks have a pessimistic side to them. Examining how the high consciousness we possess has led to a culture of egocentricity, accompanied by jaunty, rhapsodic guitars which remind me of My Chemical Romance. Then we have the track "X (Mwah)", which sounds like a danceable, fun song and actually is about abandoning hope in favour of recklessness. 
"Smile" is about reminding people that technology and the internet aren’t everything in life; constant exposure can affect your mental health. The lyrics read; “If we can shut the fuck up/Maybe we can learn to smile for once/(I'm ready to run, are you ready?/I'm ready to run, are you ready?)/And we've all got something to say/Living in a human menagerie”. Basically what they’re saying is “I’m ready to change my way of living. Are you?”. 
Next up is the single "Furrow", with a fantastic key change and lyrics about learning to value the person you’re in a relationship with. The interlude "(Cocoon)" contains the melody of "Furrow" and has a dreamy vibe to it, very relaxing. Then we have the title track, which starts with a slower tempo building up to an anthemic, sing-along group chorus, followed by another interlude, "(Theatre Of)", which reminded me of being at a circus, just like "(Blueberry)". "The Lotus" is supposed to be an extended version of "Opera Oblivia"’s  "Lotus Eater". In that songs they were talking about the feeling of anxiety personified into a woman. Hellions wanted to continue this topic in "Rue" since "Lotus Eater" was a fans favourite on the last record as well. 
The 10th song, called "Get Up!", is very different, in my opinion, to the previous songs. With rap elements it gets a “harsher” sound that I really like. Next on is "Harsh Lights". This song also starts with a slower tempo, just like "Rue" does, and then turns into a catchy chorus that I would really be interested in hearing live. The closing track, "26", which is an extended chapter to "24" from "Opera Oblivia". You can hear Hellions unique sound through this song but of course it flows through every song and album in different ways. This one is about having a right to be happy. It’s like getting a call from your future self looking out for you and reminding you how great things can be.

In conclusion I’m giving this album a solid 9/10. "Rue" makes me want to be more open to “happier-sounding” music and dance around in my room. My favourite tracks would have to be "X (Mwah)", "Get Up!" and "Harsh Lights". Well done!

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