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  • Andy Mockbee

Review: "Hayley" - THELIXX

What does dishonesty feel like from the recipient's perspective? Often, rage and confusion coats contemporary representations of this experience in a blunt force. On their fantastic single, "Hayley," Whales-based band THELIXX fashion 80's synthpop into an evocative and eerie chronicle of calloused confrontation. The chorus opens up the song to a wider palette of influences. The streaks of guitars paint a vaguely new wave hue into the chorus. Never cooling down, these dreamier flavors feel like letting a blanket of fog roll into a blitzing party. Some pop songs are constructed like a shotgun shell, blasting through quickly and overwhelmingly. "Hayley," however, is a perfectly strung bow with an arrow aimed directly between the eyes. Its most striking and gripping in its intricacy and specificity.

The relative brevity, clocking in just over two minutes, allows THELIXX to wind a tight and concise narrative with catchy songwriting that begs for repeat listens. Interestingly, the prechorus shifts ever-so-slightly between the first and second verse. The first presents the cheating partner as aloof and not present, but the narrator adopts this attitude himself by the second. This is fantastically subtle and impactful songwriting, using the pop format to create expansive experiences beyond what words can say. Where a listener might assume the lyrics purely refer to the infidelity of the titular partner, the immaculately-filmed music video twists its meaning to something more ominous. As frontman Curt declares, "Caught you red-handed," the love interest creeps onto the screen with a knife. Sometimes, dishonesty in a relationship can feel as cutting as a knife.

"Hayley" is just the first of three singles the band co-wrote with Grammy-nominated songwriter Daniel Evans. The song begins a new era for THELIXX, following poppier sounds and hook-driven writing. Based in Whales, THELIXX are an indie-pop trio formed when they were fifteen. Aside from "Hayley," the band has released three other singles, beginning in 2021. The next twelve months is set to make THELIXX a band to watch closely.

Written By Andy Mockbee



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