‘Nothing could keep us away’: Oscar Dawson on Holy Holy’s return to the Torquay Hotel and new danceable music

Subscribe to Forte Magazine


‘Nothing could keep us away’: Oscar Dawson on Holy Holy’s return to the Torquay Hotel and new danceable music

Image credit: Michelle Grace Hunder

Holy Holy will return to the Torquay Hotel on May 4 for one huge live show.

Celebrating the release of their latest single ‘Messed Up’ (feat. Kwame), indie rockers Holy Holy are currently travelling across the nation on an 11-stop headline tour featuring special guests Kwame, CLEWS and Medhanit.

A song unlike anything they have released before, ‘Messed Up’ is a daring move by the group. An arpeggiated synth floats under Sydney-based rapper Kwame’s confessional lyrics before the rapper throws the shackles off and purges the line “Being with you feels so damn messed up!”, launching the track into a drum ‘n’ bass beast at 180 beats per minute.

Keep up with the latest music news, festivals, interviews and reviews here.

With their four full-length albums to date, over 100 million streams across their body of work and multiple gold and platinum singles hanging on their walls, the famed duo has already hit up stages in Wollongong, Newcastle, Gold Coast, and Brisbane, and will be taking to the Torquay Hotel stage on Victoria’s surf coast on Thursday, 4 May.

With a reputation as one of Australia’s best live acts, we sat down with Oscar Dawson ahead of the gig in Torquay on Thursday, where fans can expect to hear new material alongside favourites from their top 5 ARIA Album Hello My Beautiful World and their growing catalogue of hits including ‘True Lovers’, ‘Maybe You Know’, ‘Teach Me About Dying’ and ‘Sentimental and Monday’.


View this post on Instagram


A post shared by Holy Holy (@holyholymusic)

You’re nearly halfway through your latest national tour. How’s the tour going so far? 
The tour’s been great so far. Never gets old travelling around this country. Brisbane was a sell-out at a beautiful theatre up there called The Princess; this weekend we’re in Victoria, my home state.

You’re performing in Torquay this week, making a return after a huge show about this time last year. What keeps bringing you back to this destination?
Nothing could keep us away. Love the surf coast; I grew up coming down this way. Something about the air, I guess! I’m a shit surfer, so it definitely wasn’t that. The water’s cold and I’m scared. In truth the crowds down this way are always a delight, I love Torquay

We’ve heard the last show was a raucous affair with a bunch of frenzied fans and music lovers. What’s the wildest or most surprising thing that’s happened at a gig in recent years?
The most surprising thing was playing two shows a night to a seated and masked audience. That wasn’t wild, though. The opposite. The wildest thing must’ve been selling out our shows at capital cities last year… it never ceases to amaze me that people buy tickets to our shows. It’s a thing of wonder.

What have you noticed about shows following a few years without live music? Is there a different energy in the crowd?
Lots has changed. About the world but also us. I think there is a strong energy and people are so willing to turn up and enjoy the show – nothing is taken for granted. If there’s one thing the pandemic was good for, it was that – helping us feel gratitude for what we have here.

Talk to us about your latest single and the forthcoming album, how do you feel you’ve evolved from previous releases?
Hard to say, because we’re in it. I’d like to hear from other people as to how we’ve evolved. In any case… I think a lot of things have happened. We are making music that’s more danceable. We want people to be able to move at the shows. We are open to collaboration, we want to collaborate with others, hear other voices on our songs, and hear other production ideas. I’d say overall we’re more open-minded than ever before.

Messed Up certainly represents a sonic shift, with the appearance of Kwame. What was the creative process like?
Once Kwame came on board, it was easy – because he lifted the song so much. We had worked on this song for ages but hadn’t found a way to finish it. Kwame came on board, wrote and recorded his vocal, and the song just unfurled from there. We spent some time with him in the studio working on the production – he was important to that also – and then, somehow it came together. An ideal collaboration.

Is this the sort of direction we can expect from the forthcoming album? 
Yes it is – a lot of collaborations on the record, lots of guests. Can’t wait for ppl to hear it.

Will you be previewing any new tracks at the shows?
We just might. If Torquay remains on its best behaviour.

Purchase tickets to the Torquay show here