Hey Violet open up about debut album From The Outside and explain why it’s equally inspired by Lou Reed and Taylor Swift...
Pop fivesome Hey Violet began life as Cherri Bomb, signed while they were still teenagers, all the way back in 2008. Despite a major label deal, tours with Bush, Steel Panther and more, that band fizzled to a conclusion in 2013. Now though, they’re back and are tipped for the very top.
Their debut album From The Outside is the first album to be released on Australian pop-rock kings 5 Seconds Of Summer’s newly formed Hi or Hey Records, who they’ve supported on three of their world tours.
As it comes to shelves (you can preview and purchase it on the right-hand side of the page), we spoke to singer Rena Lovelis about how the album came today and why she’s equally inspired by Taylor Swift and Lou Reed...
How did the experience of making this album compare to how you’d imagined it would be? Did it live up to expectations?
“It was difficult. We’d worked with a lot of different people and it was really hit or miss. A lot of times we would be walking into the studio and I’d be really scared. But once we got going it really exceeded all my expectations, we’re all really thankful for how it turned out and to our producers for shaping our sound.”
Are the songs all pretty recent? Or have you been collecting them for quite a long time?
“They’ve all been written pretty recently. Some are about a year old, most less than that. They’re very personal though, this whole album comes from a very vulnerable place, it’s so much of our lives.”
What producers did you work with on the album? And what support did they give you?
“Our main producer is Julian Bunetta. He’s been very hands-on with us, which we’ve really loved, he’s helped us grow and make the album sound cohesive. We all wanted to make a great pop record and a few times we did work with other songwriters to make it happen, but Julian’s been the glue for the record.”
What kind of record is it lyrically?
“It’s a super personal record. The themes that come up a lot are love and perspectives on relationships. It’s a love album. It’s what I tend to focus on.”
Who are some of your favourite lyricists? Who do you look to for inspiration?
“My mom has this Lou Reed poetry book and I remember reading it about a year ago when I was writing and underlining loads of lines I liked. Now, looking back at our album, there’s at least one line from that book in every one of our songs so he’s a huge inspiration. I don’t think I write like him, but I love how he writes and how he explains how he feels. Also, Taylor Swift, I love how she draws comparisons, how she goes back and forth with her words, she gives you so many perspectives and how vulnerable she can be in her songs. So, randomly, Lou Reed and Taylor Swift.”
When did you settle on the title for the album?
“It came pretty late on. We were going back through all the lyrics on the album, wondering if we should make it self-titled, a lyric or something completely different. We decided we wanted it to be a lyric and From The Outside was the one that really stuck out.”
Your album is the first to come out on Five Seconds Of Summer’s label Hi or Hey Records, what involvement have they had on the album?
“It’s less that they’re hands on with our music, more that they just help us. They love hearing our demos and we love hearing theirs. But they’re creative people and they understand they need to let us do our own thing. They’re not there wagging their finger at us, sitting in the studio making us work…”