Updated: Feb 18
Welcome all to 𝗖𝗼𝗻𝗻𝗼𝗹𝗹𝘆’𝘀 𝗖𝗼𝗿𝗻𝗲𝗿, a series of weekly reviews by Charles Connolly - an artist in his own right. Here, Charles delves into the greatest brand new singles brought to you by the best unsigned artists on our electrifying and eclectic set of 𝙉𝙚𝙬 𝘼𝙧𝙩𝙞𝙨𝙩 𝙎𝙥𝙤𝙩𝙡𝙞𝙜𝙝𝙩 playlists.
𝙃𝙤𝙡𝙙 𝙊𝙣 - 𝙃𝙤𝙡𝙡𝙞𝙣 𝙆𝙞𝙣𝙜𝙨
Charles takes his index finger and pinkie, and raises them to the sky…
Enough about love for now. Get ready to don the leather jacket. Brace yourself because your toes are about to be crushed into the point of a cowboy boot. Pretend you’re brave enough to get a few tattoos. The Brylcreem is thick and glossy, and the quiff is high. This is the time for masculinity to come out, as it were. Just macho enough, but lean as a mean machine. On stride Hollin Kings with their single, Hold On.
Kick drums immediately pound you into submission. A fat riff lifts your heels off the ground. The distortion is blustery, crumbling like an avalanche, as each note whips up the rocks like a juggler. The energetic drum fill metrically brings in the fuzz bass with a high split kick! You are theirs.
The members of Hollin Kings seem to have done their best to keep their birth names out of the public eye, so I can only speak of them by their talent.
The whole band is quickly muffled into a captivating hypnotic shuffle, paving way for the casually confident singer, not too dissimilar to the style of Josh Homme (Queens of the Stone Age). There is a feeling of them having grown up listening to Black Sabbath, but these days being huge fans of Royal Blood, Foals, Jack White and the aforementioned QOTSA. The bass humps the drums in a perfectly rhythmic relationship. The lead guitarist can’t hold back his jealousy and makes occasional squalls of excitement to make his presence known. There is love and sex in rock music, and there is rarely anything so close as the members of a rock band, Hollin Kings being no exception. They come together with a united fiery passion - each player as cocky and important as the next.
Back comes the all-important riff, as the hips jut, the faces sneer and the heads punch forward to the beat. It is the modern, cooler version of the long-haired headbangers of the past. A tambourine halves the tempo and brings straight swagger as the chorus is under way. The singer, having until this point seemed relatively reserved, lets rip! The voice growls and cracks - in a good way - as he screams, “Just hold on to me!”, and we heave back into the solid, gritty shuffle for one more round.
It is the lead guitarist’s time to shine, with a solo so far from widdling and more reminiscent of the way George Harrison wrote his solos. A perfect piece within a piece, thought-out and sculpted for the duration before passing the baton to the singer. The bridge takes us down a notch, to where we once belonged. The singer is raspy with thin distortion, the guitars thrum only once a bar, the sparse tom fills surround you with refined depth, as we are swept once more into the pushy chorus. This is shades-on cool. An organ joins the band for the final fat riff. They are spanking hard! The energy is high. Sweat is flung as though despised. Guitar necks jolt violently. These brothers in rock have reminded us what it’s all about. It is so real. So organic. So full of life and guts. They mean it: so you feel it.
The song is done, the song is over
You’ve left me feeling far from sober.
The boots have stomped, the crowd is wild
I light a smoke, to Man - not child.
Crash upon me, like a pill
Writing nonsense, with a quill.
Rock is dead? Rock is gone?
Never fear, just Hold On.
Listen to 𝙃𝙤𝙡𝙙 𝙊𝙣 HERE!
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