It’s official: The Veronicas are back, guns a-blazing. It’s safe to assume that we’ve welcomed them with open arms, considering the success of their platinum smashing, number one hit You Ruin Me. Then again, timing couldn’t have been better – the twins were long due for a studio album, since Hook Me Up was released seven years ago. At last, patient fans everywhere have been rewarded with The Veronicas’ latest, self-titled LP. Jam-packed with addictive beats and punchy attitudes, The Veronicas is a well due album that’s been worth the wait. Ladies and gentlemen: welcome to the rebirth.
The Veronicas have matured over the years – not only vocally but also stylistically. They’ve played with pop, flirted with EDM and have plenty of balladry experience – but one thing that will never change is their distinct rock sound. Those punky, rockstar undertones are always present – just fused with other genres to create their hybrid sound. In the album’s opener Sanctified, we get a rock that’s mixed with the dirty West, as well as a definite churchy vibe. It’s a moody jam, backed by grungy electric guitars and soulful vocals. This is a stark contrast to I’m a Veronica – an upbeat, electro number that should’ve really been the opener instead. The girls have a no-holds-barred approach; it seems like they’re back with a vengeance, purring, ‘did you miss me?’ The track has slight resemblances to previous singles Untouched and Popular, with the tongue twister rap versus and all. With action-packed breakdowns and thrilling guitar solos, this track embodies what every Veronica is about: independent, kicking ass and full of attitude.
There’s more where that came from, too. The twins are don’t shy away from their dark side, flirting with themes of obsession in Line of Fire. Like their 2012 single Lolita, it’s all dripping with sultriness and moany vocals, topped with sweeping strings and synths. The powerful chorus does make up for the somewhat lacklustre verse, that’s pretty much comprised of one repeated note, if you think about it. More Like Me is better in the sense that it packs more of a punch – moany vocals yes, but also anger, screaming and swearing too, for good measure. With strings, a full band and exceptionally heavy bass, the angsty rock track bears a similarity to The Secret Life Of… era. Well, an uncensored version, at least.
The rest of the album is pop goodness, with a Veronicas twist. Take Cruel, for example, a boppy number flanked by groovy guitars. Don’t be fooled, though – the lyrics resemble every nook and cranny of a bitter break up feud. ‘I’m making out like I don’t care, but in her sleep I’d cut her hair’, the girls spit. Then there’s the breezy love song that’s Teenage Millionaire, with its easy chords and euphoric, laid back vibes. It’s all echoey backing vocals and dreamy ad libs, reminiscing about a young and wild love affair. On another spectrum, the synth-driven anthem Mad Love explores the concept of a dysfunctional relationship, in a ‘can’t live with or without you’ approach. Complete with playful rap verses, catchy hooks and an irresistible chorus, this track is a strong contender as a potential single.
On the subject of singles, the duo’s second offering If You Love Someone isn’t too bad either. As you’d expect by now, it’s a studio produced goodie – all radio friendly and simply radiating positivity. ‘If you love someone, then tell them right now!’ the twins advise, through sweet harmonies and cheery guitar chords. The album’s first single will always be the standout, though. There’s something so unbelievably raw about You Ruin Me that it completely outshines the rest – probably because it’s the least manufactured of them all. With those sombre piano progressions and equally depressing strings, the track is a guaranteed tear jerker, to say the least. The Veronicas bring a level of vulnerability and authenticity that can only be matched by Cold, a scornful track that’s both unforgiving and unrelenting. It’s an emotionally charged performance that’s highly reliant on spoken word, for a game changer. It’s certainly not rap – these are thoughts and words tumbling out, spitting hurt and angry venom everywhere. The chorus is the real heartbreaker, though. With its sky-scraping melodies and broken delivery, the girls sound so close to tears that you know, for sure, there’s a definitive tug at your heart strings and you’re close to tears yourself.
What better way to make a comeback, than do it with attitude and style? The Veronicas have certainly achieved that and then some, with hard hitting choruses, punchy verses and just a spike of vulgarity. One thing’s for sure after listening to this album: you don’t mess with a Veronica.