I don’t have a witty intro for you today. It’s Monday. Life is weird. It’s good, but it’s weird. It’s hard to believe it’s already almost Christmas time which means almost New Year. Basically what I’m saying is things are just feeling a bit frantic, a bit insane, which means it’s time for some new music because, honestly, listening to music seems to be the only thing that keeps me level so don’t let me down Holden Laurence!
Holden Laurences’ ‘Floating, Drifting’ EP begins with “The Final Scene”. A bass-heavy beat kicks this track off before some epic synth sounds come and really drive this track into its comfort zone. Holden’s vocals come in like a warm blanket. They are silky smooth but also have this almost playfulness in them but don’t come off as juvenile. Slow and steady is the name of the game for this opening track which wasn’t helping me get over my mid-Monday afternoon hump but the undeniable motion in Holden’s voice and the emotionally charged delivery of every word definitely helped perk me up ever so slightly. Even though I found a sense of playfulness in the vocals here, there’s something overall shadowy about this opening track. I won’t call it eerie or creepy but there’s just this subtle smokiness about the song that I hope continues on throughout the other five tracks on this EP.
“Memories and Dust” definitely amps things up to where I was wanting them. That’s not a knock on the opening track as it is absolutely a stunner of a song but I just needed the energy that comes with “Memories and Dust”. Even with this more infectious and upbeat tempo, there’s still that odd balance of darkness and playfulness that comes with this track. Clearly a signature of Holden Laurence, it’s something that I found so intriguing and got completely wrapped up in it to the point that “Memories and Dust” was coming to a close before I could even find the right words to describe the track. No need to fear though, the title track “Floating, Drifting” continues with Holden’s distinct sound and style while shifting it ever so slightly. The darkness felt in the first two tracks seems to fall to the wayside giving the playfulness in the vocals and instrumentation the spotlight. Even with this slight shift, this song is still clearly that of Holden Laurence but with just a bit more of a surf rock vibe. I really love the ebb and flow of this track to the point where this was absolutely my favorite track thus far and will probably be the standout song on this album for me.
Whereas “Floating, Drifting” seemed to showcase the more playful nature of Holden Laurence’s sound, “Awakening” has an almost abstract ambiance to it that brings the darker side of this amazing musician to the forefront. A stunning track that will hit you right in the feels by both the instrumentation and the brilliant lyricism, I found myself completely addicted to the moodiness of this track. It’s one of those songs that, when listening to, you just get lost in your own head but not in the stressed out or anxious way, more just in a content and sentimental way. There’s an infectious bassline in this track that really stood out to me and instantly got stuck in my head. The perfectly placed waves of sound and energy made this track one that absolutely warrants an honorable mention as far as my favorite tracks on this album go.
“Beautiful Light” may be one of the longer tracks on this six-song EP but it doesn’t feel like it. There are so many interesting layers in this track that it was hard to hone in on just one throughout the song. This intricate layer thing is something that has reigned supreme throughout the album but there’s just something about how they are all put on top of each other in this track that made it super clear. There were moments in this track that reminded me of Death Cab for Cutie but I will stop short of comparing the two. There are just a few similarities in the vocal delivery of this track and Death Cab’s signature sound.
As you all know by now, all good things music come to an end and this one ends with “The End Will Come”. An anthemic ending to a perfectly beautiful and content EP, I loved how this song closed everything out and tied up any and all loose ends while making sure you know that Holden Laurence is one of those artists that refuse to be put into a box. With a little bit of that surf rock style heard in “Floating, Drifting”, a little of that darkness felt in “The Final Scene” and the addition of a very triumphant mood, I couldn’t think of a better way to close out this stunning album.
My Favorite Track(s): “Floating, Drifting”
For Fans Of: Undeniable Power and Emotion; A perfect balance of playful and darkness
Mosh-ability: 1 out of 10
What My Cats Thought Of It: Artie slept on the back of the couch; Autumn roamed around the dining room
How Badly I Want To See This Performed Live: 6 out of 10
My Overall Rating: 7.5 out of 10
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