6 Cute Things HIM Fans Will Love About Ville Valo’s New Album ‘Neon Noir’

Welcome back, Will Valo! It’s been 10 years since Finland’s “love metal” heartthrob released a new album, the last one HI Mswan song, Tears on tape and here are six cute things HIM fans will love Neon Noir.

Our beloved deep crooner crept back into the musical spotlight back in 2020 with the release of Gothica Fennica Vol. 1, a three-track EP featuring “Salute the Sanguine,” “Run Away From the Sun” and “Saturnine Saturnalia,” all of which also appear on Valo’s brand new LP. More than formidable, it showed that even without the members of HIM behind him, his signature style was still as recognizable as it ever was before.

“The reason for the EP was to test the waters, to see if people are still interested in the kind of racket I’m making, and also to check and see if there are any labels that might be interested in putting it on here out,” Valo told Loudwire in an exclusive interview near the end of last year.

“[The lockdowns were] quite depressing, quite dark… Everything was uncertain about everything here. There were areas in Finland that were closed off, you couldn’t drive outside the city, it was like being in a dystopian sci-fi movie. I found it so depressing that all I could do was keep making music,’ he reasoned.

If you’re the type to find joy in any situation, then Valo’s decision to concentrate on new music early in the pandemic is an excellent one.

For HIM fans, there are plenty of ways to connect the dots to Ville’s previous band as well as fresh new dynamics that were never present in HIM’s sound. Nevertheless, here are six sweet things that HIM fans will love Neon Noir:

1. It’s like seeing an old friend again

Ready to feel old? HIM’s last album was released 10 years ago. With Will Valo go a whole decade without making a “love metal” style LP, listen to Neon Noir feels like a warm reunion with an old friend. And just like catching up with a high school best, Valo picked up right where he left off.

The man’s voice still sounds as amazing as ever, his vampiric lyrics about love and loss sit in the same vein as his work with HIM, and though Neon Noir takes a softer instrumental approach than Ville’s old band, the music evokes the same feelings as when Bam Margera reality shows ruled MTV. Damn Will, it feels good to catch up. – Graham Hartmann

2. “Baby Let’s Take The Scenic Route Through Hell”

If you’re going to walk through hell, you might as well stop and smell the brimstone, right?

While this is a really nice lyric from Valo that wraps up the second verse of opener “Echolocate Your Love,” it’s about so much more than that. It’s that we’ve been missing this dangerous and dark sense of romance in heavy music ever since HIM broke up.

Love is the most intense emotion and, unless you’re a real asshole, the most important. So many facets of love are lost in music as much of it tends to focus on either puppy dog ​​type feelings or breakup heartbreak. Valo challenges you to revel in the darker shades of love, helping you realize that even when things go sideways, it will always be what you pursue the hardest. – Joe DiVita

3. The well-known, warm tones

It is not in all places Neon Noir (“Baby Lachrimarium” would be robbed of its heavenly quality with rumbling, buzzsaw low-end), but on the more driving tracks (“Salute the Sanguine”, “Neon Noir” – the two most HIM-esque songs), the familiar bass sound that helped define HIM’s sound is back in action, all under the heavy guitars.

It’s like a soothing hug – the low frequencies massaging your feet as the subwoofer pulses through your floor, potentially disturbing a downstairs neighbor in the process. – JD

4. 80s vibes in the best way

Okay, okay, the nostalgic ’80s aesthetic has pretty much run its course in popular culture, but when you’re an artist as deeply in love with the ’80s as Ville Valo, the decade’s influence is inseparable from your DNA. Even if you are tired of hearing “blinding lights” or seeing Throne-style animation on every YouTube channel, 80’s influence from Neon Noir will still please your palate.

The synth riffs in “Echolocate Your Love”, “Salute the Sanguine” and “Neon Noir” are just too good to pass up and I don’t care who you are, anything that gives you Lost Boys vibes can’t be bad. The point is that Ville Valo doesn’t use the 80s aesthetic to chase trends. HIM’s music always paid tribute to the synth-driven, melancholic and romantic 80s classics, and the band’s balance between these dynamics was always inspired. Neon Noir is no different. -GH

5. “Love”

Damn, how I love “loveletting”. One of the softest and most beautiful ballads Valo has ever released, “Loveletting” is the musician’s best standout single since “Heartkiller.” The track really showcases Valo’s production prowess, its gentle instrumentation blending perfectly with an anthemic chorus. Ville also explores his full vocal range throughout the song… well… his “I don’t smoke cigarettes anymore” vocal range.

The “Loveletting” music video is also a triumph, representing Ville’s embrace of the “black sheep” within himself. Ville has stated in numerous interviews that he has always felt like an outsider or an outcast – something many of his fans can certainly relate to – and in this decade of increased isolation, the message of: “I don’t fit in, but it is okay”, is an important one. Although it’s one of Ville’s sadder songs, “Loveletting” feels like the umbrella for one’s black sheep. -GH

6. There’s good news if you love “The Path” and “Sleepwalking Past Hope”

HIM’s longest songs were quite doomy in their approach, if not quite reflective of what one usually thinks of as doom when it comes to heavy music.

Those slow, busy lanes that gave plenty of room to get lost in a dream haze are awfully hard to find with Valo. Here, the nearly 8-minute closer “Vertigo Eyes” sends the record off in the same way as “The Path” on HIM’s 2003 album Love metal.

Neon Noir takes us through some bright and upbeat places with some big new wave overtones, but it ends exactly as everything with Valo should – not on a chipper note. – JD

Get your copy of ‘Neon Noir’ here and follow Ville Valo further Instagram, Facebook, Twitter and Spotify.

100 Best Rock and Metal Albums of the 21st Century

Loudwire’s picks for the best rock and metal albums from 2000 to today.

Related Posts