Emo Elders Broken Hearts Are Blue Reissue First Album

Sweet Cheetah Records and Poptek Records announce the reissue of a freshly mastered (by Matt Lynch in December 2023) The Truth About Love, which was originally delivered by Broken Hearts Are Blue in 1997 and saw release via Caufield Records (Mineral, Christie Front Drive, Giants Chair). The album sees release digitally and via cassette, a format the album has not yet seen release on, on June 28.

Pre-order it here.

The band shares “Because I Am” from the reissue, a song once covered by Braid for a release via Polyvinyl Records. Listen to the track, and enjoy a recently unearthed live video of the song being performed during a ’90s-era Michigan Fest here:

From their start in 1995, when they occupied a place in a culture that included then contemporaries Braid, The Promise Ring, Mineral, Christie Front Drive, Jejune, and Jimmy Eat World, Broken Hearts Are Blue’s signature consistency has been its refusal to stay consistent. Their idiosyncratic catalog reflects an enduring preoccupation with exploring the rock and roll form, filling in its near-exhausted but still nimble outline with inspired compositions filled with colorful intertextuality, gallows humor, and personal allusions to place and past. Ever since their debut album, The Truth About Love, their songs have vacillated between styles, tempos, emotional textures, and indie rock influences.

The band regrouped in 2018 to release three previously unrecorded songs (Here Is Always NowhereLate Night, Walnut StreetRustbelt Sunsets), plus a brand new one (Murder Mysteries). The experience of writing and recording after more than two decades spurred the geographically-dislocated four-piece to continue to develop and share demos from their homes in Los Angeles, Alameda, Minneapolis, and Kalamazoo.

Over the following five years, the band has surpassed their original production, releasing the seven-song Goodbye Bunny Smith in 2020 and the twelve-track Dark Whimsy and Soft Surrealism in 2021.

Their most recent album Meeting Themselves was recorded in the summer of 2023 at John Vanderslice’s Tiny Telephone studio in Oakland. Meric Long (The Dodos) served as engineer and producer, while Bay Area multi-instrumentalists Yea-Ming Chen (Yea-Ming and the Rumours) and Anna Hillburg (Shannon and The Clams, Will Sprott, Shannon Shaw and her All Star Buddy Band) were brought in to add their unique flair to several tracks.

With the latest reissue, fans and newbies can here where the ever-evolving band began and, as vocalist Ryan Gage puts it, “Let the unborn cultural priests of the future debate the curious case of The Truth About Love and its rummy place in the annals of rustbelt balladry.”

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Photo by Mikel Palmer