“It’s sick. It’s something different,” enthuses Hellions vocalist Dre Faivre about their new album ‘Opera Oblivia’. He couldn’t be more right. Theatrical, bombastic and grand while maintaining a ramshackle danger behind an aggressive lust for life, the band’s third album sees the band mix it all up. Again.
Recorded once more in Thailand but approached from a completely different angle, the band has “done the same thing with a different formula. It felt good.” The end result isn’t a million miles away from 2015’s slow-burning goliath ‘Indian Summer’ but there’s not a single piece of ground that’s been retreaded.
“It’s a growing thing,” offers Dre. “As a person you’re always changing. It’s still got the Hellions sound that we’ve always done.” Somehow, despite more influences and ideas than we’ve got room to list, the album is powerfully cohesive. “All of our songs are different to what we’ve done before they all have touches of us. It’ll always feel like us.“
“We always want to be grand,” continues Dre of the band’s vision going in, “but a lot of the songs changed. We rewrote three or four tracks and doing that, going over there and having them totally change, is frightening.”
The first single from the record, ‘Quality of Life’, is a mishmash of fist-swinging frustration, sky-high dreaming and a driving need for action. The track was inspired by “one of our friends who was becoming a lawyer. She wasn’t enjoying herself, so she wrote her resignation from university. She’s enjoying what she does now.
“In any sort of life choice, sometimes you find out it’s not what you wanted to do at all. That song is basically us telling whoever is listening that if you’re not enjoying what you’re doing, if you can’t fight through it, just turn a corner and do something else.”
It’s a fork the band have faced before, but “there’s always going to be bumps in the road. You have to ask yourself why you’re doing something and who you’re doing it for. If it’s leading you towards negativity then it’s not for you.”
Hellions are “never going to bullshit. There’s going to be down times. You’re always going to question everything that you’re doing, that’s what makes you a human at the end of the day, but how you react to that situation and how you deal with what you want to do, shows true character. If you want to keep on doing something, just pursue it. Keep on doing it. Persevere.”
While the songs of ‘Opera Oblivia’ are an eclectic bunch, the message couldn’t be more united. “We’ve always championed being yourself. You always find people who are leaning towards trends and stuff, but why not just start your own trend? Be a leader at the end of the day, don’t be a sheep. Just be yourself and do you. After all, no one’s going to like you more than you.”
Taken from the July issue of Upset, out now – order your copy here. Hellions’ new album ‘Opera Oblivia’ is out now.