The notion of a sound being affiliated with a place has long been tossed out the window, and increasingly, bands from all over the world are offering their take on genre. Such is being made clear by Swedish think-punk newcomers HOLY, who are set to release their debut LP, Stabs on March 11. The band, brainchild of a gentleman named Hannes Fern, is a transcendent force of punk, floating past seemingly concrete definition and instituting a cooler, more colorful compilation of tonal and rhythmic vibes.
The record’s first single, ”Lights”, is a trip from the very first note, with cleanly oscillating melody, both pleasant and fun, while the vocals intoxicate with a persistent “ooh la la, ooh la la” refrain: charming parentheticals encompassing an overall engrossing composition, speaking to all languages in all corners of the globe. After the second chorus, with the help of a psychedelic drum phaser that will make you check your headphones, the song shifts gears entirely, quickening up the tempo and finishing with some wonderful female vocal “oohs.” To dub HOLY as “punk” would be an oversimplification, and perhaps a disservice, ignoring the tasteful infusion of delay-lacquered guitar, the occasionally muffed bass, and the warm coating of reverb on everything. The sound goes beyond genre definition while simultaneously staying grounded in its roots.
Stabs will be available on March 11 via PNKSLM. You can stream “Lights” below.