Blueanimal is a band that has its origins in an Orlando band called Redwax. Luke Elms (guitar, vocals) and Matt Lube (bass) branched out from Redwax nd got together to perform duo shows. Those duo shows grew into Blueanimal.
The band’s new album is entitled Figment That Was Me and it is that rare entity: a concept album. As if that weren’t rare enough, it is a concept album about mental health. Of the new album, singer Luke Elms said, “I wrote this as a concept album telling the story of a person descending into and rising out of a battle with depression and the consequences on his relationships, self-image, and all facets of his life.”
The beginning of the title track sets a mood that is fitting for the narrator’s descent into depression. The melody is subdued and the vocals are whispered. It provides a dark and somewhat foreboding mood that fits the concept of the album. After the beginning, the song turns toward a grungy sound that might take you right back to the 90s.
The album hits its low point with “Rock Bottom”. The song actually rocks harder than some of the other songs even as the narrator sings about sinking to the bottom and being unable to get away from himself. The end of the song features a solid guitar solo, which makes you notice that you haven’t heard anything quite like that in the preceding songs.
“What Does It All Mean” is very existential in mood. He sings, “A mind like this can be a curse.” But then the song becomes more hopeful when he sings, “I broke the cycle and now I’m here with a purpose crystal clear.”
This album does a great job of capturing the existential crisis of the narrator. It’s in the melodies that are fittingly grungy. It’s also in the imagery where you find yourself right with the narrator when he says things like, “The room is dark and the blinds are drawn.” It might hit a little too close to home for those who have suffered from depression, but ultimately the album is about the triumph of the human spirit and realizing that it gets better.