Awaiting the release of a song you’ve never heard before by a band you adore is a nerve-racking experience. So nerve-racking that at 00:04am on April 22nd, ‘Lovers Drug‘ by The Hearts was already making its way into my iTunes library. I hasten to add, I wasn’t nervous because I have no faith in The Hearts‘ ability to make a really good song, they’ve already proven they’re more than capable of that time and time again. I was nervous because I wanted it to be a really, really, really good song so they can continue doing what they’re doing.
After at least 24 hours of ‘Lovers Drug‘ on repeat, pausing it only to sleep, I reached the conclusion that my nerves had been wasted and ‘Lovers Drug‘ was in fact, a really, really, really good song.
‘Lovers Drug‘ has already been played on BBC Radio Wales, Radio X and BBC Radio 1. We’re still waiting on Zane Lowe, who was a huge fan of The Hearts’ last release, ‘Just Kids‘ and personally I think he’ll enjoy this one even more. Your move, Zane.
The Hearts themselves, are yet to play ‘Lovers Drug‘, but I imagine it’ll be making its debut to their live set very soon. With shows coming up in: Birmingham (May 23rd), Cardiff (May 24th, June 9th), London (June 4th), Lodestar Festival (September 2nd-4th) and a slot at a little festival over on the Isle of Wight (June 9th-12th), The Hearts’ calendar is already beginning to fill up. It won’t be long until ‘Lovers Drug‘ takes its rightful place in amongst the rest of the hits-in-the-making on The Hearts’ setlist.
Similarly with The Hearts’ previous releases; ‘Lovers Drug‘ is an infectiously catchy anthem with a stadium-worthy chorus and a melody that would be the envy of pop chart-toppers everywhere. Another note of similarity, but a slightly less positive one; the difficulty The Hearts, or rather, people who work with The Hearts seem to have is that they don’t know how to best showcase the band’s sound to do their songs, and their talent as a whole, justice.
Production can make or break a song. For me, it’s broken one of The Hearts’ songs before, and whilst I have my Personal Pedantic Production Problems with ‘Lovers Drug‘, that’s only because The Hearts are already top of their class, so to mark them alongside the average-achievers just wouldn’t be fair. And I can’t be nice all the time, right?
Where the similarities in ‘Lovers Drug‘ and The Hearts’ other songs reveal only its one slight weakness, the differences between them only magnify its many strengths, making ‘Lovers Drug‘ possibly The Hearts’ best release to date.
Synth is always a strength, more synth is only ever a good thing in my eyes. ‘Synthstrumental‘, (one of two remixes put together by frontman, Alex Nash) which is simply ‘Lovers Drug‘ minus the drums and strings, as you can imagine, is my idea of heaven. Or at the very least, a good trip.
The Hearts don’t hold back from pushing those buttons, nor do they hold back with their melodies. ‘Lovers Drug‘ boasts a melody so impossibly catchy that it’s bordering on obnoxious. And I would accuse it of being so were it not for the honesty and tenderness of the lyrics. Which brings us nicely to the most obvious element that, for me, separates ‘Lovers Drug‘ from their other songs.
The Hearts aren’t usually credited for their poetic majesty, but ‘Lovers Drug‘ is different. It’s evocative, personal and smart as hell.
The innocent simplicity of the play on words in the line: “You hit my like a lovers drug. You shot me like a hitman”, seems like pretty straightforward imagery until you notice the suddenly glaringly obvious pause every other time you hear it: “You hit me like a lovers drug. You shot me like a hit, man”. And just like that you have a lovely little double entendre, sparking a totally different image whilst making the whole ‘drugs and addiction’ theme even more prevalent.
Of course, that interpretation could entirely be the result of timing, and if it is, what a beautiful accident. But I like my version better. That absolutely stomping bassline, however, was no accident.
As its title would suggest, it’s highly addictive and should therefore be consumed irresponsibly.
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Header image by RRW.