Holy Holy and evolving with each album

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Holy Holy and evolving with each album

Just like the theme behind Holy Holy’s newest single, ‘Darwinism’, the band’s music has evolved since the 2015 debut LP, When the Storms Would Come. Where marine life may grow legs and leave their watery confines, Holy Holy’s Timothy Carroll has stepped significantly away from playing guitar, instead adding in horns and streamlining the band’s overall sound.

“We been playing the songs off When the Storms Would Come for a long time and it sort of got to the point where, when we went into rehearsal for these songs, we be like, ‘Oh these songs again, somebody shoot me’,” Tim says jokingly. “But it’s really exciting to have new material and we’ve sort of freshened the older songs as well to match in with these newer ones. It’s a bit different as well as I not playing guitar, I just singing so there’s a bit more space in the songs and that really different for me to not be thinking about pedals and tuning and playing in time and just kind of relax. We’ve planning on playing about five new songs on the upcoming Australian tour.

“There were a few moments [recording the new album] where Matt Redlich [producer] and Oscar Dawson [Holy Holy guitarist] said, ‘Is this too different from what we’ve done and will people still like it?’ And in the end it didn’t matter, the songs were great songs and had integrity to them and something we’d be proud to release. I think often times the band themselves are so involved in what they’re doing that they think it, really different but from the outside it, less pronounced.”

While Timothy has stepped away from the guitar in several new tracks, the instrument hasn’t been completely abandoned. Learning his way around the microphone in the music video recording for ‘Darwinism’, Tim found that the absence of the guitar at his chest wasn’t as hard to adapt to as he thought, adding “When the music started it just felt really natural and easy”.

The new onstage set-up was trialled in Europe through a few songs, and by a common theme the band adapted. Instead, a surprising discovery while in Europe wasn’t so much the effect of their new music, but of the band in general. As Holy Holy have gained audiences throughout the continent and in places they’ve never been to, of which Tim credits the undeniable reach of Spotify.

“We’d had some great audiences but we’ve never had people knowing the songs and knowing the material,” he says. “I guess since the album has been out a while and we’ve been on Spotify and a bit of radio in some of the territories (like in the Netherlands) but at every show there were people singing along to the songs and wearing the Holy Holy t-shirts. And in towns that not only we’d never been to but never heard of and didn’t know how to pronounce – so that was really humbling and exciting and fun.

“When we did the show in Paris there was a guy who’d driven from Geneva because the record was really important to him and saw we were playing so he drove across the country to a tiny little club in Paris.”

When it comes to driving in the Holy Holy camp, travelling across the country in the van is far from Tim’s responsibility after an incident during their first European tour.

“[This tour] was a lot easier because our tour manager did all the driving,” Tim says. “We hire these vans which are called sprinter vans and they’re really long. On the first tour I drove that and I put this massive scratch down the sprinter van in London on the first day that I arrived. I fully gauged the fuck out of this brand new Mercedes-Benz van. So I now I try and have a policy of not driving. So it was great, I just sat in the back and did stuff on my laptop.”

With no incidents in sight from the recent overseas tour, both Oscar and Tim arrived home safely and are days away from kicking off their Australian tour, which sees them stop by Melbourne, Geelong and Ballarat. Following the tour will be the last of three sessions in a studio in Preston, putting the final touches on album number two, which is slated for an early release next year.

Written by Amanda Sherring

When & Where: Corner Hotel, Melbourne – November 11, The Workers Club, Geelong – November 12 & Karova Lounge, Ballarat – November 13.