Rue Delaney’s Hello Dark World
Across the four tracks on Hello Dark World, the debut EP by Rue Delaney, we’re pulled into the neon nighttime of London and its layers of violence, sex and sadness, but also nostalgia, love and growth. The material began to take shape when Rue lost all sense of herself in a poisonous relationship. Identity crumbled and so did the many walls the ego constructs to protect itself. Rue was raw and the music flowed. Simultaneously, Rue Delaney found the courage to be honest with herself, regaining fragments of who she used to be. The next six months found Rue confronting the reality of her relationship, sifting through the hardest parts and reconstructing herself in the process.
Hello Dark World came to life in London’s Peckham / Finsbury Park neighborhood, written in collaboration with Josef Page, a producer who provided the space for Rue to let down her guard and bring her smoldering emotions into the studio. “I felt like Joey created an environment for me to express what was really going on behind the scenes. The world we made in the studio helped me remove myself from the immediacy of the pain and focus on a body of work that moved me forwards.”
This sense of catharsis is clear on lead single “Butterfly,” a wistful pop song stripped down to its essence – weeping guitar notes, a building bass line, and subtle drum parts. A good example of less is more when it comes to creating a backdrop for complex emotion to express itself. Single two, “That Girl,” is a conversation between Rue Delaney and her former self.
A swirling guitar bed creates the space for Rue to address the person she refuses to become again. Guitars feature as one of the more prominent elements on the EP, about which Rue says: “Joey and I both love guitar pedals and making weird sounds and textures, chopping things up, almost using them like tape.” EP focus track and sleeper hit, “In Your Eyes I Die,” bubbles to life around a stylish bassline and vocals that float like cirrus clouds: elegant, unimposing.
Final song, “Rains All Day,” is an ode to the clear skies that inevitably appear on the other side of soaking rains. “Violence towards women, mental health, LGBTQ+ rights are top of the list when it comes to the issues I feel passionate about. The music came directly from how I was processing an extremely rough patch. It’s easy to be swallowed by those moments. To alchemize them into art and music was a savior for me, though I recognize not everybody has that ability. It’s why I always try to spread awareness of mental health wherever I can and make sure the people in my life know they can always turn to me.”
Since Rue hit the studio and started work on Hello Dark World, there’s been a small groundswell of industry attention on the project. Recent wins include signing to 235 Music Publishing, an imprint of Kobalt, being picked up by Jess Kinn at One Fiinix for live, agent for Ed Sheeran and Years & Years, and catching the eye of manager Phil Jones, known for his work with Yumi Zouma, The Magic Numbers, Khazali and others.
Saturated with hypnotizing guitar notes, smooth vocals and unfiltered verses, “That Girl” details a personal conversation the artist has with her former self.
Inclining toward a remarkably mesmerizing melody, that spotlights a very relatable phrase ‘I will never be that girl’, it becomes clear that Delaney is an artist that plans on using introspection to pave her way to greatness. When pondering the song, Rue comments, “I think it’s this song that means the most to me from the EP. It’s the realisation that for a long time you took the blame to numb someone else’s pain that had always existed before you and never being that girl again for anyone.”
With her heart laid bare for the world to see, Delaney vows to creatively touch on themes of violence towards women, mental health issues and LGBTQ privileges in her upcoming EP – all of which culminates in a poignant and forever-relevant commentary filling out the debut project. Situating herself as an artist committed to battling social problems through her art, Delaney uses “That Girl” to prove that “Hello Dark World” is set to be one hell of a sonic listen!