Polyphia have announced their first Australian headline tour. The band will play Brisbane, Sydney and …
Via their sophomore album Can’t Stay Forever recently released into the world, Newcastle’s Eat Your Heart Out have channelled the perpetual motion of life into 11 tracks that journey through pop, emo, rock, and beyond.
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Created with the band holed up in a remote location in Stanhope, Can’t Stay Forever is Eat Your Heart Out at their most polished, empowered, and vulnerable to date. A satisfying bridge from their debut full length Fluorescence in 2019, Can’t Stay Forever equally questions and celebrates change without sacrificing the ever-growing charm of Eat Your Heart Out, firmly showcasing a marked progression and plenty of riffs, melodics and grooves for good measure.
Previously touring earlier this year in the UK and Europe with American rockers Tiny Moving Parts, Eat Your Heart Out are poised to close out 2022 in sublime fashion, armed with a brand new collection of songs from their latest album. And to celebrate the recent release of Can’t Stay Forever, Eat Your Heart Out vocalist Caitlin Henry takes us track by track today through each of the album’s songs.
The moment we started writing Forget Me, we kind of had the vibe that it would be the opening track on the record. And I really liked how it’s one of the more “emo” songs on the record, I like that it has kind of more of that old-school emo vibe, the bridge especially I feel is very emo. I feel like of all the songs on the album, it’s kind of the only one that, when I think about it, has meaning that relates to lockdown or those kinds of things. It’s kind of about this idea of being trapped in the house and, I don’t know if it’ll make sense if people haven’t seen it, but in American Horror Story there are ghosts in the house, but every time they try to leave through the door, they just find themselves back in the house. It sounds really morbid when I say it like this, but they dig up their bodies to set themselves free, which sounds really dark. But that’s kind of the imagery that I was thinking, the idea of having to dig yourself up from the backyard or the front yard to set yourself free and get out of the house. It was kind of dark imagery that I was working on, but it was also kind of accompanied by us coming back after two or three years and wondering if people remembered who we are and if they still like our music.
I wanted to write the lyrics for Down in a way where it sounded like it could be about any kind of toxic relationship. But for me specifically, I was thinking about the idea of our relationship with social media and the validation that we seek from it. For most people, most of the time, all of that just always ends up making you feel worse. I know for me, if I go on one of our YouTube videos and read the comments and they’re all about how I look or whatever … I don’t do it often, but if I do, it’s like: “Oh, this will be funny”. And then at the end I’m like: “Oh no, it wasn’t really funny. I could have just not done that!” Sometimes people do really have nice things to say, and it’s really lovely. But then sometimes as well, people just have horrible things to say. But we’re all addicted to it, social media and the idea of that validation.
I wanted to write the lyrics for Down in a way where it sounded like it could be about any kind of toxic relationship. But for me specifically, I was thinking about the idea of our relationship with social media and the validation that we seek from it.
[ Caitlin Henry ]
Scissors In My Skin
Scissors In My Skin was one of the first songs we wrote for the record. It was written at the end of 2020. Initially, Will our guitarist wrote the instrumental for it. And we really liked that it had almost like a Turnover kind of vibe in the guitars, we thought it was really cool. And when I was writing the lyrics, I was thinking about the idea of relationships, and again a lot of it had this really weird vivid imagery in my head. I don’t know if it makes any sense when I try to explain it, but it was this idea of people being almost like dolls and all tied to each other with strings. And it’s about those moments where your relationship with someone is severed or whatever, but you’re still tied together in this way and pulling on each other, kind of unravelling with each other and trying to get away. It was that very specific imagery that was living in my mind, just the idea of being tethered to each other and unravelling each other.
Twenty Something was written with Stevie Knight in August 2021, from memory. I just had this idea, I guess it’s something that most people in their mid twenties or twenties are all probably thinking about. It’s like: everyone’s in such different stages simultaneously. Like, we’re all the same age, but everyone’s doing such different stuff; some people have kids and some people own houses and some people live with their parents and some people are travelling the world. And it’s just this idea of sometimes getting caught up in comparing yourself to what other people are doing and being like: “Am I on the right path? Am I doing the right thing?”. It’s just kind of having that quarter life crisis and feeling a bit lost in it all. Some days you feel very adult and then other days you’re like: “I need an adult”.
Heavenly was also one of the first songs created for the record, the instrumental was written with this really interesting tuning. I don’t know what the tuning is, because that’s outta my wheelhouse, but I know that it was a mid one. And we were like: “That’s really cool! That riff is sick!”. It might have actually been the first one that the lyrics were finished for, but it’s just sort of this idea about seeing someone that you love so much, and, to you, they’re angelic, they’re perfect. But they just can’t see themselves that way. And so it’s just kind of trying to convince them to see themselves the way that you do. And to give them that reason to like themselves a little bit more.
Hostage was also written with Stevie in the same session as Twenty Something. For this one, I was thinking specifically about being a woman in the music industry and just being a woman in general. I was thinking about kind of getting caught up in the male gaze and all of these expectations that are placed on you and what people want you to look like and want you to do and all that kind of stuff. I’m not one of those people, I don’t like being told what to do. And this song is just kind of pushing back on that and, as it says, not being somebody’s hostage, even if they’re trying to sort of guilt trip you into doing these things that you don’t particularly wanna do. It sounds very poppy, and it’s one of the more fun songs on the record, but I feel like lyrically, it’s actually one of the deeper ones for me. And I love the vibe of Hostage, it’s a very fun song. I hope that when people listen to it and they hear a line or something, they’ll be like: “Oh wait a minute. I didn’t catch that the first time!”.
I don’t like being told what to do. And this song is just kind of pushing back on that and, as it says, not being somebody’s hostage, even if they’re trying to sort of guilt trip you into doing these things that you don’t particularly wanna do.
[ Caitlin Henry ]
Blood was one that’s a little different for me. Usually with our songs, the guys will come up with an instrumental idea first and then I’ll write some vocals on top, but Blood was actually the first one that I wrote just with an acoustic guitar myself, which I’d never done before. I was like:
“I wanna do this”. And it actually worked! It was during one day in lockdown or when I was just at home, and I was reading about something that our government had done with regards to climate change. And I think it was around the climate summit and stuff like that, and the article was about how, basically I think we were ranked last in the summit for sustainability. I was really angry about that, and it was one of the first times that I had written something that felt political in a sense, or something that felt bigger than me. It’s ultimately about corporate greed and the government basically sacrificing the earth just to line their pockets.
Sour was written in the studio. Actually, we had an instrumental that was cool and we wanted it to be on the record, but I’d been struggling to write any vocals that just worked with it, nothing was really gelling properly. It was towards the end of our studio time, I think we were in the last week and a half of our five weeks and our producer Jack was like: “We need to make this song happen for the record”. And he just got the guitar out and started messing around with the chords and just changing the structure up a little bit. And he kind of came up with this progression straight away, we were like: “Oh, that’s sick!!”. It still had the same vibe, but it just flowed really well. Pretty much straight away, as soon as Jack came up with that progression, I just went and sat with my little earphones in and wrote the chorus, but I wasn’t sure if it was quite right. I showed Jack, and he was like: “This slaps, this is sick!”. It kind of just was what it was, it just worked. I then wrote the verses over the next day or so, it all came together pretty quickly and it was about the idea of people, myself and other people around us, just not really being able to communicate effectively and just getting stuck in a cycle. Everyone has their vice or whatever that they use to try to avoid situations that they’re uncomfortable in. It was just kind of that idea of avoidance and a lack of communication and being stuck in a cycle of that. So again, it’s kind of dark, but sounds relatable.
Poison Devotion is definitely the odd one out on the record, we didn’t wanna do just another acoustic track. I know it’s pretty standard for an album to have that sort of stripped back track and we didn’t really wanna just make it another acoustic one. I said to the guys that I really wanted something that was a bit more ambient and electronic, but we’d never done anything like that before. We didn’t even know if we could make something like this. And Jake, our drummer, made a little drum beat just on his computer and he sent it over and it just kind of sat in the Dropbox for a little while. Then one day Will was just playing a riff on his guitar, and I was like: “Wait, this could fit! I can hear it in my head!”. So, I quickly got out the computer and played it – and it worked, it was so weird. Will wasn’t even trying to write something for this particular song, and then it just all came together. Then with the vocals, we had this instrumental track for it. One day I was just sitting in my bed and I was like: “Oh, I should probably write something today for the album”. I just had my little microphone set up and I just wrote these lyrics and I was literally just laying in my bed and I just recorded them with the mic. I sent the recordings and we put them on the track. The song didn’t have any of the production or anything at that point, it was very stripped back, like, it was just the drum beat and the guitar and these recorded vocals I did lying in bed. When we got into the studio and we got to the day where we were meant to be tracking the song, I went to re-track the demo vocals – and I just couldn’t get the vibe. Like, it just didn’t have the same feeling or something. And Jack was like: “Well, let’s just use the demo vocals!”. So we ended up actually using the demo vocals that I’d recorded lying in bed on the actual recording. That was really cool, I’d never done anything in one take like that before either.
Deep End was the last track written for the record. Again, we had this instrumental floating around for ages and it was really cool, and we were like: “This needs to be on the record”. And I just, again, couldn’t get anything that I was happy with for it. I did so many drafts of other vocals and stuff, but I just didn’t like any of them. But Jack, our producer, was like: “No, you have to get this done. We’re not letting the record go without this song”. I was happy at that point to have the album just be 10 songs, but Jack insisted, and Deep End ended up being really cool.
When we recorded it, I’d just literally written it the day before. It felt very fresh and it was kind of just summing up the anxieties, but also the excitement that I felt about actually getting back into being a band, and just covering everything that had happened over the previous couple of years. It felt fitting in the end that the title of the record came from that song because it summed the album up well in a way. We didn’t know at that point that Can’t Stay Forever would be the title because we chose that much later. But it definitely felt fitting that the title all came from the last song that was written. Deep End is definitely one of my favorite songs off the album. I’m glad Jack forced me to finish it.
Headfirst was also one of the first songs written for the record, it was demoed in the same session as Scissors In My Skin and Heavenly, they were the first three done. Headfirst was this instrumental track that our previous guitarist Andrew had written, which was really cool. I think he had one line of vocals on it, which was the very first line of the song. A lot of the time, if there’s a track with someone’s written vocals on it, I’ll start from scratch generally. But in this case, it was already actually really beautiful, so we decided to keep that. Which was awesome! I kind of built it from that, and pretty much as soon as we started demoing it, we were like: “This is the closer for the album”. It just kind of felt very emo but epic at the same time. Headfirst was also one of the first songs on the record that was just done, and it just was there for about a year just totally finished. I guess it worked really well being back to back with Deep End because it just continues on that idea of feeling a bit anxious about the future, but also at the same time being ready to just dive in head first, and just go for it because it’s like – well, what else are you gonna do? You can sit around and wait or you can just go for it. I really like Headfirst as a song, and I’m really excited to play it live. I think it’ll be quite cool to play live, so I’m definitely excited about that, but I think it’s a good note to close the record on overall too.