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Album Review: Hotel Bleu by Broadside


Hotel Bleu

Release: November 10, 2023

Review by Emmi Sollie

Alternative pop-rock band Broadside release their highly anticipated fourth studio album, Hotel Bleu.


Hotel Bleu features 11 songs, including previously released tracks One Last Time, Cruel, Bang, Lucid, and Bleu. In order to bring the new album to life, the band has collaborated with producers Andrew Wade (A Day To Remember, Neck Deep, Motionless In White) and Andrew Baylis (Sleeping With Sirens, Jelly Roll).

The album kicks off with Stranger, a high-energy track, which with lyrics like "I feel like a stranger, living someone else's life" and "I've been dreaming of getting away from the darkness inside of this hotel room" feel like the perfect introduction to this album.

The songs on this record each tell a different story, touching on various different topics. There are songs for dancing and songs for reflecting. Speaking on the album, Oliver Baxxter says: "On tour, there's nothing like a hotel. Whether you have the most amazing or worst show of your life, the best part of the evening is getting a good night's sleep once all the endorphins run down. In terms of the concept for 'Hotel Bleu', every room is a different headspace. All of the songs are separate stories in one place. They're open for interpretation, but there's a song for every type of person."

Dazed & Confused has an incredibly catchy chorus, and I can imagine this being so much fun to experience live. Lucid feels airy and dreamy, which goes with the theme of the song. It's essentially a song about escaping, as Baxxter explains: "Maybe you're getting away from a breakup or thinking of someone who passed. The idea is 'the only place I'll see you is in a lucid dream, because you're not around'".

How To Love, How To Lie is one of the songs on this record I feel like has a darker sound and a bit of a mysterious vibe to it at first listen. Going into the chorus it hits you with that alt-rock edge and energy, and you can't help but bop your head and move along to it. The album builds towards the tender exhale of the final track, Bleu. You can really feel the emotions through Baxxter's vocal performance in this one, and it's a beautiful song to close the album with.

"Forever without you is a different shade of blue"

By checking in to Hotel Bleu you get to tune in to all kinds of different stories. You get to experience different soundscapes, from classic guitar-driven pop-punk anthems with upbeat loud drums, to more wavy eighties-style guitars. You get layered vocals and neons keys atop glitchy beats, with soaring addictive alternative pop hooks. Broadside have created an album where every song is equally addictive. Hotel Bleu pulls you in, and makes you never want to leave.

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