Hollerado – [Album]

Friday, 08 February 2013

Since forming six years ago and immediately allying themselves with the indie music scene, Hollerado has seemed to go out of their way to see just how far the envelope can be pushed before they finally tear it apart completely. When the music business was interested in seeing just how novel it could make an album without letting it lapse into the realm of complete parody (this was when labels like EMI tried developing two-piece cardboard “CD cases” called “enviro-cases,” and bands including Two Miracles (among a multitude of others skipped cases completely in favor of learning to fold paper inventively), Hollerado unveiled a series of case-free Demos In A Bag which culminated with a Record In A Bag (which was also their full-length debut) in 2009 – a move which could have been seen as a coy commentary on the business' farcical cost-cutting measures, a crass comment on the same, or just brilliant/convenient. When indie rock got so sunny and poppy and fluffy that it was nearly impossible to take it seriously a little while later, Hollerado went a step beyond the trend and released Margaritaville 2: The Reckoning – a concept as perfectly cheesy as the most cartoonish imagination might expect. Simply said, Hollerado has seemed to be game for going too far every step of the way but, this time on White Paint (the cover of which is designed to look like a stained glass window, of course), the band has flown clean over the top and charted a new quadrant of genius that few (if any) minds were even aware existed. In this release, Hollerado has staked a claim among a select group of artists who are certainly on the cutting edge of pop because they simply look at the concept of the form in a way completely unlike everyone else.

The sounds charted on White Paint are remarkable to hear, but even more remarkable is that, in listening to them, people will realize that some are the sort that they simply assumed were completely beyond Hollerado's capabilities. Dense little interludes like the warm-up for “Wonder, Velocity, Charlie and Me,” the thoroughly bizarre, almost Flaming Lips-ish bridge in “Pick Me Up” which will remind listeners why it is a good thing indeed that the punk rockers finally began taking acid, the beat and dynamics of “Thanks For The Venom” (which perfectly recalls the squalid romance of standing outside CBGBs in the Fall of 1976) and pretty much every single damned micro-tone of “Too Much To Handle” (which sounds like the only heir to The Voidoids' legacy ever to appear since the band broke up in 1979) are all perfect examples of the powers that Hollerado possess on this record, but even more incredible is the fact that the band is able to play them all and still consistently produce a powerful and poignant presentation; there is not a single soft moment here, and not one which seems out of place. While there's no easy way to figure out what the band's focus is at any point on this record, the jagged and razor-sharp guitars supplied by Nixon Boyd and singer Menno Versteeg are incredibly affecting and undoubtedly managed with meticulous care. Likewise, Jake Boyd's drums take a bite out of every ear they touch with every beat; it would be hard to absorb were it not for the perfectly fluid form and sound of Dean Baxter's bass, but the combination of those elements turns out to be perfectly sublime; not just better than the average sophomore effort, but better than many bands' fourth and fifth full-length offerings. Readers are advised to get on board with Hollerado now at the release of White Paint, while the getting's good; this band is destined for great things, but one gets the impression that they're not even at the edge of their envelope yet so there's no telling what they may yet be capable of.


Hollerado – "Pick Me Up" – White Paint [mp3]


White Paint
will be released on February 26, 2013 by Royal Mountain/Arts & Crafts/Universal Music. Pre-order it here on Amazon .

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