Just when you thought they dropped off the face of the earth, The Veronicas make a triumphant return to the music scene. To be fair, they never quite left – since the release of their 2012 single Lolita, the Aussie twins have been hard at work on their third studio album. There’s been sisterly spats and record label disputes, but The Veronicas have pulled it through to present us with their latest masterpiece: You Ruin Me. And just as the title suggests, this hard-hitting ballad is one of The Veronicas’ most personal tracks yet.
Fun fact: this single was recorded in the wee hours of the morning, where emotions and thoughts are at their peak. You’d think because of this The Veronicas would sound tired, but the effect is completely opposite. In fact, this factor just enhances the raw emotion that the twins deliver in this track. You Ruin Me is all trembling voices and distraught tones, backed with melancholy piano progressions and some sorry-sounding strings. It’s the ultimate heartbreak song; there’s obvious hurt that’s tinged with sarcastic anger, as heard in the line ‘job well done, standing ovation. You got what you wanted, I guess you won.’ The Veronicas have always been good at conveying emotion, but perhaps their time away has made them wiser beyond their years. Although the production is minimalistic compared to their pop hits 4ever and Untouched, the duo bring a vulnerability on a scale surpassing anything they’ve ever recorded. It’s this factor that saves the song from turning into a yawn-fest.
With time, the twins’ voices seemed to have matured as well. Compared to their vocals from their last album Hook Me Up in 2007, The Veronicas no longer sound adolescent. They’re women now, with strong soaring voices that break for emphasis at the right moment. The sky-scraping melodies are no match for their vocal ranges – every note is in perfect tune and certain words are accented for that extra effect. And when the twins finally start harmonising, it sends the track to a state of spine-chilling serenity and leaves you wondering why they were ever on hiatus in the first place.
It’s an absolute triumph of a first single, which is hopefully just the teaser to that long-awaited third album. It is risky to come out with a ballad as a first release, but remember the balladry successes that Paloma Faith, Sam Smith and Adele have had in Australia? No doubt with the Sony giants backing them, The Veronicas will have another hit in their hands. This is only just the beginning of their rebirth.