Austra - HiRUDiN
Critic Score
Based on 14 reviews
2020 Ratings: #566 / 692
User Score
Based on 185 ratings
2020 Ratings: #391
Liked by 10 people
May 1, 2020 / Release Date
LP / Format
Domino / Label
Art Pop / Genres
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austramusic.com / Website
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Northern Transmissions

It’s a powerful statement about letting go and untangling the maze of feelings on the way to closure, while also recognizing and breaking the toxic patterns that have become too common in her past.


While it's not as brilliantly cohesive as Future Politics, Hirudin's exploration of losing someone and finding yourself sounds like the music Stelmanis had to make.

Beats Per Minute

Katie Stelmanis has been delivering consistently big beats and sing along hooks for years, and her latest, HiRUDiN, is another notch on a belt which is tightening its grip on pop supremacy.


Katie Stelmanis’ fourth album swings for big, embodied pop moments without shying from the strangeness and discordance that’s animated the project since the beginning.

The Line of Best Fit

As well as a wide range of emotions, various musical styles are visited and executed with the causal confidence becoming synonymous with her output.

Under The Radar

Overall, HiRUDiN is a winning combination of the familiar and the peculiar and is worth a listen for fans of rhapsodic pop rock with seductive vocals and grooves.


On Austra's poignant fourth album HiRUDiN, Katie Stelmanis traces a deeply personal journey of growth, queerness and toxic relationships.


Fans of Florence And The Machine or Zola Jesus yet to investigate her yet should do, for Katie Stelmanis is one of the most distinctive voices in pop music today.

God Is in the TV

HiRUDiN, Austra’s fourth record, is the Toronto-resident’s most introspective release, as she attempts to both express her cyclical nature and finally break down it’s barriers.

Loud and Quiet

There are plenty of fun moments, but HiRUDiN never really coheres into a full-feeling album in the same way that 2017’s excellent Future Politics did.

Of all the dark pop names that stood out at the beginning of the past decade, such as Cold Cave and Trust, Katie Stelmanis and her Austra partners may have been the most creative venturers. If, at the beginning of their career, the Toronto band seemed to follow the trail of Bat For Lashes and The Knife, over the years, each new record of unpublished served as a stimulus for a completely different thematic direction. Songs that move through different genres and trends in a particular way, a ... read more
Anywayz- 7,5
All I Wanted- 6,5
How Did You Know?- 6,5
Your Family- 7
Risk It- 6,5
It's amazing- 7,5
Mountain Baby- 7
I Am Not Waiting- 7,5
Messiah- 7
Few good songs here and there.....that's is pretty much it. (Shrug)

"Anywayz" is pretty good tho
apparently i was following austra on spotify before listening to this? but this is also the first thing i've heard from the group so i have no idea where that came from. anyway, i'm glad i was, because hirudin is a great art pop record and i haven't really heard anything like it recently. katie stelmanis's vocals are really highlighted by the sometimes sparse, sometimes not, kind of atmospheric and nature-ish(?) production, and that's good because she's a talented singer. most of the melodies ... read more
The way this went soft as hell, not expected... well I'm very happy about this album, somehow this made my day a little more happier, I like the way the songs tell a story and keep on going til the end. Probably this is the most "quiet" Austra album so far. A great surprise.
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Track List

  1. Anywayz
  2. All I Wanted
  3. How Did You Know?
  4. Your Family
  5. Risk It
  6. Interlude I
  7. It’s Amazing
  8. Mountain Baby (feat. Cecile Believe)
  9. I Am Not Waiting
  10. Interlude II
  11. Messiah
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Added on: March 5, 2020