Are We There Yet? reclaims the Past and Excites for the Future

Are We There Yet? reclaims the Past and Excites for the Future

Rick Astley is back with some brightly coloured new suits and a brand new album, Are We There Yet, clearly influenced by his long road trip in the United States of America last year, and it’s brought out all the feels with me.

A few years ago, Rick started to become more public with the difficulties he faced in childhood related to the death of a brother before he was born, his parents’ divorce and living with his father as a child, with his mother being turned out of the house. He has described ‘a lady giving us lunch who wasn’t my mother’. Difficulties in childhood most certainly have an impact on a person as an adulthood and can have far reaching consequences on a person and on their own children and grandchildren if they are not addressed. While Rick’s childhood does not mirror mine I see similarities and the difficulties he has spoken of in adulthood resonate with me deeply.

Just as he inspired and guided me through a difficult teenage period, his most recent albums have helped light a path for me – how to navigate the challenges early issues cause – and how to deal with them. In my opinion his albums 50 and Beautiful Life express his realisation of, and coming to terms with, a painful past.

I believe Are We There Yet? shows he has come full circle.

With it, an album that has elements of pop, soul and jazz and on which he plays many of the instruments himself, he has completely broken with his Stock Aitken and Waterman past and it seems that he is ‘reclaiming’ some of the old songs (although still good and much loved) as his own. Never Gonna Stop (BBC 2 A listed and with an official video beautifully filmed on an iPhone by Rick’s wife Lene Bausager) is bound to make people think of Never Gonna Give You Up, as it is his most famous song and is basically now an internet meme. Rick has stated in interviews that although he is appreciative to the song for everything it’s given him and that it’s kept him in the common consciousness, he doesn’t really feel very coonnected with it any more. Now he has a “Never Gonna” song that is entirely his and always will be.

Rick Astley at Glastonbury this year. Source Rick Astley Facebook
Rick Astley at Glastonbury this year source: Rick Astley Facebook

Taken alone, the title Forever and More certainly gives a feel of Together Forever (my favourite Rick song as a teenager) and the titles probably have a similar meaning – always together. But Forever and More is about a breakup – ‘you’re gone, gone, gone, forever and more. You came into my life like a hurricane’ – and perhaps it’s just a little bit … more? Maybe referring to record producers, not a love affair? That’s just me surmising – but again it’s a great, catchy song. And Take Me Back To Your Place immediately puts Take Me To Your Heart in my mind. Take Me Back To Your Place is (as we used to say in the old days) RAUNCHY! where Take Me To Your Heart is extremely innocent. So … whether these songs do represent a reclaiming of elements of his past or whether that’s part of my imagination, I certainly feel like this album represents Rick coming of age and again it’s an album I can use in my own personal develoopment, as in my struggle I am still a few years behind.

The song Blue Sky, in which Rick shows off a beautiful, gravelly side of his voice that I don’t believe we’ve seen before, certainly seems to represent this – if we can make our peace then we will learn to fly. Waterfall seems to expand on the theme he brought up with Keep Singing when he pointed out that music was his religion. “And under the waterfall of life We all need a little healing”. He also makes some direct comments to his parents.

At this early stage my favourite on the new album is High Enough because for me, as a 48 yo woman who hasn’t nearly achieved as much as she wants to in life, I NEED to be asked these questions. I think Rick is asking this about his own career, which is clearly vastly different to mine but when you’ve got nobody to push you and you stop pushing yourself, you simply stop doing things and I hope that others in my situation will also take big inspiration from this.

Did we want it, did we crave it?
Did we need it bad enough?
Did we want it, did we crave it?
Did we need it bad enough?

Did we reach high enough?

Reaching high while singing with Blossoms in 2021. Source Rick Astley Facebook
Reaching high while singing with Blossoms in 2021 – source: Rick Astley Facebook

There is so much on this album and the best is for you to listen to it for yourself. And while we are certainly ‘there’ in terms of growth I’m excited for the future! I’ve mentioned my favourites – let me know what yours are!

Rick is doing a live on his social medias tomorrow at 7pm UK time to listen to the album. The album has reached midweek number one on the Albums charts and we’ll know on Friday if it retains that coveted slot!

May be a graphic of ‎text that says "‎Official Albums Chart Update 1 12 There Arש ARE WE THERE YET RICK ASTLEY LW: New Peak: Weeks: NEW i 2 NEW SICK BOI REN 3 LW: New Peak: NEW PAINT MY BEDROOM BLACK HOLLY HUMBERSTONE Weeks: 4 NEW LW: New Peak: Weeks: THE DARKER THESHADOW THE BRIGHTER THE STREETS i LW: New Peak: Weeks: i‎"‎
Source Peter Neill Facebook

And you can buy it here:

Digitally Are We There Yet? (

Physically with a bunch of other amazing merch Rick Astley – Official Website

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