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Ruel Is Back and We’re Here For It

After spending the better part of 2021 writing and recording for his debut album due out in 2022 which we can’t wait for, London-born, Sydney-bred singer-songwriter and multi-talented performer Ruel releases a new track for “LET THE GRASS GROW” followed by his latest single “YOU AGAINST YOURSELF” – an up-tempo pop anthem.

Ruel’s honest lyrics are on display as listeners get a peek into the 19-year old’s relationships,

over a massive chorus paired with gorgeous falsetto harmonies.


“YOU AGAINST YOURSELF” is about someone in my life who has lots of self-destructing

qualities." he admits - "It’s about that feeling of reaching out to them to let them know the direction they’re heading in isn’t healthy and even though it seems like there’s little hope and you feel helpless, you’re still rooting for them.” – And finally, after 2 years of waiting, he decided to visit his fans on this mini tour in the UK & Ireland to, not only visit his family and friends but also to play 3 sold out shows for us.

We had a chat with him backstage at his Shepherd’s Bush Empire show in London a few moments before his fantastic set and here’s how it went.

Three shows between the UK and Ireland, tonight is the last one, how’s it been so far?

It's been amazing. Dublin was hot as well. I love playing Dublin, people are fun! Genuinely, they're a funny audience, they say things that are funny and hold out signs that are organic. We laugh so much and sometimes it’s hard to concentrate (laughs) but it was cool. Manchester was also amazing, they’re very loud there. London is tonight and it’s special because it’s my hometown, my family and friends are going to be in the crowd.

Do you think there’s a difference between your fans around the world when they see you on tour?

There's always it's always really a difference. I feel like in Australia, it’s more like a difference within states. Because I like if I go to like, Perth or anywhere around the city in Western Australia, not a lot of international artist go there so when someone comes and plays the show, they like absolutely nuts. They get really rowdy. But then you go to places like Sydney or LA, New York and London. And then they get everyone like every week. You know what I mean? So London is a lot more fun to play because it is like, I do want to win everyone ever because they're so used to seeing so many great shows and people coming through. But it's amazing. I love it, I'm just so happy to be back here.

Do you feel the pressure of playing London because it’s the capital and there’s so many people from the industry?

I’m looking at these walls with pictures of Oasis and Adele and I mean, it’s an iconic venue. There is pressure, I know I need to put on a good show and I try to give my best at every single show I play but tonight the pressure comes from my cousins and friends being in the crowd. That is the scariest part. They’ll be waving at me and I’ll be on stage, I haven’t seen them in like 3 years and I don’t think I’ll get to see them before the show so that’s going to be a bit intense but I can’t wait!

You’ve been working on a new album, what can you tell us about it?

Well, I can tell you that two singles are out (laughs), “Growing Up Is ___” and “Let The Grass Grow”. I've almost pretty much completely finished the next three singles. I don't know if I'm gonna put out that many. But I've almost completed the first half of the album. It's all been written like it's all just come together very quickly and that’s exciting.

Where did you find the inspiration for this album?

It’s like one thing, one personal place. The songs have been written in over like, three years now. But I’m always writing. I wrote, I think most of the album with PJ Harding, who I did a lot of my first songs I’ve ever put out with. And he moved back to Sydney from LA. So we found this kind of pocket where we both felt like writing a song every day. And then we just kept writing. I was at a point where I thought “Oh, God, I think I've got enough for an album” And then I kind of was putting that together. Later on, I went to LA to get kind of a different vibe and celebrate with some different people to get some variety. I wrote some great songs over there. So that's kind of like a collection of those two. Writing trips and experiences. Yeah, there's like a big concept. I don't want to get into much away but PJ's kind of really, really helped me put this.

“Let The Grass Grow” is one of your latest track, what is the message?

I wrote the song with PJ over Zoom when COVID started. And we were just having conversations before the session, like hanging out, you know, you know, awake at night, and I was kind of thinking about how scary it is just the way the world is heading, And obviously, the cold, hard proof about climate change. And it was this kin of conversation and I asked myself “Okay, what do we feel like we can do when we feel helpless?” I wanted to talk about that, it’s that sense of guilt that we all have, because we feel like we are never going to do enough, unless we're a CEO of an oil company you know? So we can rally about this guilt and what we can give back, and then it kind of turned into another thing where it was like “okay, maybe, let’s not make it so literal make it to be about someone or could just be about a quarter life crisis. Relatable, right? All the things that we were thinking about overnight, we just came up with this really nice, I guess, imagery and a dark way to put it.

I could always just say, I feel like I can't give enough back to this earth which just always gives and all I can really give is my own life. It’s really dark. That's kind of what the song was about to me. But it's so open for interpretation.

And as relatable as it can be, is “Growing Up Is ___” personal?

Every song I write is personal. Whether it is something that's specifically happened to me, or just something I think about, I write everything, it's like something that I believe and it's something that I agree with. “Growing Up Is___”. I think I had a very weird childhood where I didn't really go to school, when I started touring, and it was very weird. Suddenly the producer and the writer I work with were kind of telling me things like what growing up was for them, because they got to the industry a lot later, and we kind of though to mix all these feelings together. Everyone had a weird experience growing up.

We know you’re working on your new album but what is next for you?

I’m going back to LA. It's kind of like always a sunny day in hell in LA. It's so hectic. But it's great to be there. I work really well there. I get a lot done very quickly. It's good to finish an album off there. And then yeah, I go back home for a bit and play some shows and festivals back there. Put out the album and I'll be back here in London.

Follow is journey on @oneruel. “You Against Yourself” is out now.

Words by Sal Fasone

Photos by Federica Burelli

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