The Critics Corner | Albums

From The Outside LA-based five piece releases debut album that has a little something for everyone
Hey Violet
Hayley Holmes Album name: From The Outside
Label:  Hi or Hey/Caroline/Capitol
Release date: June 16, 2017
My rating: 4.9 out of 5

Review written by: Luanne Lim
Formerly known as Cherri Bomb, the Los Angeles five-piece consisting of Rena and Nia Lovelis, Miranda Miller, Casey Moreta and Iain Shipp, have released their debut album under a new name - Hey Violet. Despite the name change, the band has retained their spunk, and, if anything, improved their alt-pop sound.

In the press release for the album, frontwoman Rena Lovelis says, “There is a lot of variety on the record, but these are all songs that we hope you wanna go on long drives and listen to.” In accordance with her statement, From the Outside, which was co-written by the band, contains a medley of jams that seem to cover every aspect of a relationship - the searching, the flirting, the dating and, of course, the breakup. All of the tracks, while they vary in content, do share a similar, upbeat vibe that flows together seamlessly.

Featured on From the Outside are two singles that have skyrocketed on the charts. We already know how insanely real and catchy both “Guys My Age” and “Break My Heart” are, so I’ll just go right to the other tracks of the album.

Starting off with a hit, From the Outside begins with, as aforementioned, the catchy and real single, “Break My Heart.” Going along with the breakup theme, there are two other songs - “Hoodie” and “This is Me Breaking Up With You”. The former attaching sentimental value to an ex-boyfriend or ex-girlfriend’s hoodie. It’s the perfect song to jam to while snuggling into said object, trying to forget and/or move on from a relationship. The latter, “This is Me Breaking Up With You”, makes its point rather clear, announcing in the first line “Can’t you see what I’m trying to do/ This is me breaking up with you.” A fun song that gives off an Icona Pop feel, it can be considered as the new anthem for all the single ladies out there.

In a fun and flirty mood? Check out “Brand New Moves” and “All We Ever Wanted”. These two tracks are sure to start a party and keep people moving.

“O.D.D.” is the official third single from the album. Considering the fact that its preceding singles have set the standard pretty high, “O.D.D.” does not really compare to “Break My Heart” and “Guys My Age.”

Like, “O.D.D.”, there are tracks that are drowned out by the others. Among those are “Where Have You Been (All My Night)” and “My Consequence.”

“Unholy” begins with a soft piano playing before dropping the beat, hitting the drums and revealing some pretty intimate, and, pun-intended, unholy thoughts. There’s just something about the keyboard accompanying Rena Lovelis’ voice that makes this song stand out.

We all know there are guys that fall into this track’s category. “Fuqboi” is my personal favorite from the album, just because it has a hilarious, yet truthful message. In traditional alt-pop fashion, the guitar riffs are strong and powerful in this track. Lovelis also showcases a spoken word verse, presenting a speech about how she will, “exterminate each and everyone of them.” Talk about girl power.

Unique from other tracks on the album, “Like Lovers Do” has a Pretty Little Liars, wispy, ghost-like sound to it. Lovelis’ voice is accompanied by soft instrumentals and noticeable harmonies between her and the other members. Picking up the rock vibe towards the end, “Like Lovers Do” showcases Lovelis’ strong voice, proving that she can belt it out with any kind of musical accompaniment.

Overall, From the Outside is a great debut for the newly named Hey Violet. It will definitely be a tough act to follow, but for the band’s first album (under this name), it has built quite the following and has proven that the five-piece is definitely a band to keep an eye on.
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