Heavenly Blue- We Have The Answer (Album Review)

April 17, 2024


Share This Review


Connect with Heavenly Blue


Listen to Heavenly Blue

Heavenly Blue may be a new name when it comes to screamo and post hardcore, but their debut We Have The Answer showcases a band that already has a diverse and multi-faceted sound.  Formed from the ashes of the slightly more powerviolence leaning Youth Novel, this group seems to be taking a cue from pageninetynine with seven members and offer up a similar type of barely controlled chaos.  Pulling in everything from classic 90s screamo and metalcore to some softer post hardcore and post rock breaks, the band strikes a fine balance between noisy outbursts and reflective melodies.  It’s the type of album that feels tailor made for a very specific audience, but the right listener will fall in love with what Heavenly Blue has to offer.

In contrast to Frail Body’s recent album that went for a much fuller and booming sound, Heavenly Blue’s approach feels more like a call back to screamo’s earlier roots.  There’s a rawer edge to the sound that makes the more aggressive guitar work as noisy as possible, while the softer moments come across as purposefully washed out and are much more subdued.  Sometimes the volume and density of the arrangements makes them feel like they’re about to collapse inwards and obscure some of the details, but with repeat listens specific details start to reveal themselves.  This type of screamo and post hardcore can be an acquired taste as it makes you work for those nuances, but Heavenly Blue makes it worth it for those willing to dive in.  Opener “Davos” sets the stage wonderfully, as it starts off with a more angular lead and pounding drums but ends with a shimmering melody that has some of post rock’s droning qualities to it.  No matter whether the band is hitting the listener with dense riffing that has an early metalcore tone or airier melodies that carry more of an emotional weight to them, there are plenty of moments that stand out and will keep listeners coming back.  I particularly like the straight up post hardcore of “Static Voice Speaks Static To Me”, the chaotic back and forth of “…and Like That, A Year Had Passed”, and the somber build-up of “Heat Death Parade”, but We Have The Answer is consistent from beginning to end.

With seven members you’d expect Heavenly Blue to have some variety on the vocal front, and they do not disappoint.  “Davos” showcases a slew of different pitches in the first minute, moving from very shrill shrieks and screams to lower pitched yells in a seamless fashion.  The back and forth can sometimes be a lot to take in, but the way it simultaneously captures screamo, emo, post hardcore, and everything in between was a big part of the band’s appeal for me.  With the chaotic nature of the arrangements some of the pitches are of the blink and you’ll miss it variety, only standing out after a few times through, but that unpredictability remains part of the charm.  Admittedly with the production values some of the vocals tend to get washed out and sound like they’re coming from a different room, which does take away some of the impact.  This seems like a deliberate choice on the band’s part to mirror that 90s sound, but it’s one that I’m not really a fan of as it takes away from some of the fragile and reflective moments.

I mentioned this in my Frail Body review, but it’s exciting to hear so many current screamo adjacent bands that are able to have an identity of their own and Heavenly Blue is one of the latest to do so.  The vocals could stand to be a bit louder in the mix in order to have more impact, but there’s a charm to the rawness and barely controlled chaos on We Have The Answer.  Sometimes it leans into aggressive riffing bordering on metalcore while other moments explore raw emotion through melodic directions, but it all comes together in a way that draws you in.  Given how many elements Heavenly Blue is already incorporating into their music on their first album, it’ll be exciting to hear how they grow and expand upon this great foundation.  We Have The Answer is available from Secret Voice.

-Review by Chris Dahlberg