Following on from the release of his debut EP ‘With U’ in 2011, Holy Other is now ready to unveil his debut album ‘Held’. Working with the same blend of R&B, UK garage and house sounds that influenced the funereal pop sounds of ‘With U’, Holy Other found another significant influence during the making of ‘Held’ in listening to and absorbing Gregorian chant. This new found influence is most keenly felt in the monastic atmosphere that haunts sections of the album, as well as the ways in which Holy Other uses the voice in a way that sounds devotional and comforting in one instant, and unknowable and distant in another.
While it was never explicitly stated at the time of release, Holy Other opting to remain vague about the meaning behind the record, ‘With U’ essentially chronicled the painful break down of a relationship. In comparison ‘Held’ is about being confined to a relationship and the depth of emotions felt throughout its course. The muted euphoria of ‘Tense Past’ and the dramatic, brooding urgency of ‘Love Some1’, give way to sparser songs like ‘U Now’ and ‘Inpouring’, which sound like navigations through a foggy mind, culminating with the schizophrenic sensuality of the album’s title track and closing with the melancholic poignancy of ‘Nothing Here’, a song which perhaps best sums up the record as a whole. ‘Held’ is both a lament to the fragility of human bonds and the desire for them to be tighter and longer lasting. Where ‘With U’ was fuelled by a desperate urge to ‘feel something’, ‘Held’ is possessed by a more resigned feeling, concluding with the acceptance that some bonds ultimately yield nothing. Deep stuff! ‘Held’ is released August 28th on Tri Angle Records. Check out new single ‘Love Some1’ below.