My first glimpse of HOLY HOLY was at Splendour In The Grass, 2015.
They played an early time slot, though I was unexpectedly swept away by their polished presentation and interesting sound: alternative rock rooted with hints of psychedelic rock.
Eighteen months later – and having been an audience member of three HOLY HOLY gigs – it’s entirely accurate to say the band are well and truly on the uprise. They constantly push the boundaries in composing and consecutively producing massive hits: proven after revealing tunes from their upcoming album ‘Paint’, plus strong singles ‘Elevator’ and ‘Darwinism’.
All too frequently, emerging bands are steered by one driving force, one gifted musician that carries the others in hope of breaking into the music industry. What’s incredible about HOLY HOLY is the sense of balance reciprocated between the band members, each contributing an equal part to each piece.
Songwriters Timothy Carroll and Oscar Dawson especially demonstrate a clear synergy on stage, all supported by the beat of Ryan Strathie on drums: who performed a mind-blowing solo during the set.
On top of showcasing a string of songs consistently lined with flawless vocals and breathtaking guitar instrumentals, it’s the aptitudes of all musicians and the connection they display on stage that instils me with surety HOLY HOLY have only scratched the surface of what’s to come.
Support act Alex L’Estrange made for quite the spectacle when he stood before the microphone at The Triffid on Saturday (27 November), sporting bright-pink slacks and surrounded by his band: notably including Ball Park Music’s guitarist, Sam Cromack.
Despite only playing before a small crowd, the musicians swiftly filled the empty room with sweet, alluring sounds: ‘purity’ was the first word that sprung to mind as they enchanted the growing audience with warm harmonies and smile-splitting lyrics.
‘Trip Wire’ was my highlight, however all tracks are beautifully written and vary enough to demonstrate Alex L’Estrange’s capabilities at tackling a number of different genres.
Having heard bits and pieces of I Know Leopard’s shimmery pop splashed over the radio, my immediate presumption was that music so exotic must be the result of five very interesting characters.
It was genuinely surprising to be overwhelmed by such an unsettling notion of arrogance the moment lead vocalist Luke O’Loughlin swaggered onto the stage, followed closely by a sauntering Jenny McCullagh. Two thirds of the gig floated by with sequences of airy tracks each quite similar to the last, sung so narcissistically it was often uncomfortable to watch.
However, the performance finished strong with singles ‘Perfect Picture’ and ‘Close My Eyes’, two shining beacons of hope, both so exquisite and rich with life and colour I Know Leopard’s sheer talent and creativity shone through their over-confident stature.
The violin is arguably the band’s biggest asset, and will hopefully be an exceptional addition to many more stunning tunes to come.