Equal Vision Records and California-based rock band Hail The Sun are pleased to present “Maladapted,” the latest single to be lifted from the Friday, August 11 release of the band’s new album, Divine Inner Tension (pre-order/pre-save HERE). A song that carries the throughline for which this album is thematically based, “Maladapted” is an exercise in letting go and simply relinquishing whatever control one has to surrender to a power greater than themselves, which is a feeling that frontman Donovan Melero felt to be one of the most liberating and empowering emotions they have ever experienced.
“Through this fight for control my whole life, I have experienced intense OCD for as long as I can remember,” Melero said. “My mind is on endless loops. And a therapist put it best a couple of years ago – that it was a maladaptive way to give me the illusion of having control over things I didn’t. Purely noise. A distraction. Letting go brings an even greater sense of relief when I can get to that mindframe and do it.” Watch the music video for “Maladapted” on YouTube HERE and stream the song on all platforms HERE.
Additionally, Hail The Sun have announced a number of U.S. summer headline dates to coincide with the release of Divine Inner Tension. Featuring support from Being As An Ocean, Kaonashi, and Origami Button, the tour will kick off next week on July 18 in Phoenix, AZ and culminate in an appearance at Soma in San Diego, CA on August 19. Tickets for all shows are on sale now HERE, and a full listing of dates can be found below.
Helmed by notable producer Kris Crummett, the forthcoming Divine Inner Tension finds the veteran rock band Hail The Sun questioning everything about what it means to be here and to be alive, on both a micro level — where the importance of our existence is profound and paramount — and on a macro one — where our time on this planet is nothing but irrelevant and insignificant. Across its 12 stirring and intense songs, Divine Inner Tension embarks on a journey that takes the listener back and forth between those two extremes as it tries to reconcile that paradox of living intentionally but relinquishing control by taking your hands off the wheel and letting the universe guide you.
One of the main epiphanies the band had when making the album was understanding that inspiration didn’t have to come from a place of despair, and letting go of the idea that an artist needs to be tortured in order to create. Instead, the band — Donovan Melero (vocals), Aric Garcia (guitar), Shane Gann (guitar) John Stirrat (bass) and Allen Casillas (drums) — looked beyond the viscerally emotional to the more spiritual and even enlisted the help of Ice Nine Kills’ Joe Occhiuti, who is also involved with Melero’s Kill Iconic Records, on a number of tracks.
“This is the first album we’ve written that didn’t come exclusively from a place of suffering or pain,” Melero admits. “Sadness, heartbreak and nihilism all inspire, but during the pandemic, there was a big shift, and this is more about retelling the story — retelling stories about everyday perceptions. Everything comes from within, so I thought that maybe I don’t have to suffer to feel inspired.”
Though that idea flows through the entirety of the record, it’s best captured by “The Story Writes Itself,” a song that both figuratively and literally sits at the center of the album. A typically impassioned blast of progressive post-hardcore, it frames the relationship between the universe and the self, and the tension and connection between them, that is so central to this album’s themes. Elsewhere, on “60-Minute Session Blocks,” the band grapples with the notion of identity, examining the way people change and fluctuate, often deliberately, over time. But then that’s followed immediately by “Maladapted,” which counters that idea completely, instead reverting to the notion of letting go of the self and instead trusting the universe. It’s a journey that began, for Melero, in 2020, when he was in a particularly bad place.
“I was going through a painful separation and really feeling low. Just worthless,” he says. “And mixed with that, the music industry was completely gone. So, I was searching for something more for myself; something bigger than myself. I was trying to find meaning in other things, and I got really into how powerful our thoughts are and the idea of attracting whatever it is we want into our existence. I felt an untapped potential that I always thought was there but could really start to feel it. And that was the catalyst to beginning this new phase and this album and that idea of just completely letting go.”
That, then, is the ultimate takeaway from Divine Inner Tension. It is possible to be both in and out of control at the same time. We just have to learn how. This album is the perfect guide for doing so, and as it ends with the urgently ominous “Under The Floor,” you’ll feel yourself finally letting go, finally understanding.
Hail The Sun will be making the following appearances this summer. Dates below with more to be added soon.
August 11 — Seattle, WA — Crocodile *
August 12 — Portland, OR — Hawthorne Theatre *
August 13 — Sacramento, CA — Goldfield *
August 15 — Berkeley, CA — Cornerstone *
August 16 — Fresno, CA — Strummers *
August 17 — Los Angeles, CA — The Regent *
August 19 — San Diego, CA — Soma *
* — Kaonashi, Being As An Ocean, Origami Button supporting