The Holidays : Post Paradise
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The Holidays : Post Paradise

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In late October, The Holidays delivered one of the stand-out pop gigs of the year. The East Brunswick Club was abuzz and a record number of over-confident dancers were unleashing unsightly moves.

In late October, The Holidays delivered one of the stand-out pop gigs of the year. The East Brunswick Club was abuzz and a record number of over-confident dancers were unleashing unsightly moves. It was not the ideal gig for those who abhor dancing and hence, I felt slightly out-of-place. However, The Holidays – being the sneaky charmers that they are – somehow seduced me with their contagious, imaginative pop gems.

 

Clever and intriguing exponents of multi-textured, tropical-esque soul-pop, The Holidays are not a common breed. It’s effortlessly infectious, but shimmering in African/Asian-inspired rhythms, multi-layered melodies and percussive intricacies. A few rockier tracks such as 2 Days only inject a more exhilarating pace to what is a consistently hook-friendly and cohesive record. Resplendent in vocal harmonies, coos and a vibrant riff-driven melody, 2 Days is an intoxicating offering.

 

6AM , however, enters a whole new realm: opening with an eerie atmospheric ambience, it somehow glides into a slick funk-influenced soul-pop anthem, as if walking from the shady enclaves of a laneway into the flashy seductiveness of the dance floor.

 

Bongos and jaunty guitars permeate Golden Sky while frontman Simon Jones unleashes his charismatic croon with an assurance that comes with finding his true voice over the space of a few years. The fluidity with which the songs blend into one another is testament to the Sydney band’s focused vision and the impressive attention-to-detail that’s evident in their meticulously-arranged and well-produced debut album. With its ‘80s influenced synth-pop flourishes and epic chorus, Broken Bones merges The Holidays’ uplifting sonic soundscapes with emotive vocals beautifully, as Jones cries: “Just show me your broken bones / And I’ll show you mine”.

 

Although Moonlight Hours and Golden Sky were released as singles prior to the release of Post Paradise, and Conga was the first song written for the debut album, these three songs merely suggested the record’s inspired proclivities – allowing for plenty of surprises along the journey. Closing song A Million Eyes is its most confounding and experimental offering. With its heady shifts in pace and tone, A Million Eyes skips from glitch-y electro to wide-screen pulsating pop.

 

Meanwhile, animal coos abound alongside Jones’ mournful lament that “I got hundreds of friends / And I don’t know what they’re for”.

 

Just like the intrigue invoked by its name, Post Paradise is a search for the ideal, otherworldly and flourishing rather than an arrival at a luminous destination. Post Paradise is a spirited, soulful and elevating record, but its complex textures and imaginative trajectory render it a memorable debut pop album.


The Holiday new album Post Paradise is Beat Magazines, album of the week and it’s out now through Liberation