Quit +/or Fight
I want to be a trucker. I want to spend the remainder of my life driving around, stopping off only to refill on whatever it is that’ll get me a little farther down the road — and listening to Holopaw only makes this notion grow within me like an ever-expanding horizon on some weird interstate in South Dakota. Their music is the stuff of time and place and reflection. It’s Americana road trip, replete with the little things you discover in the forgotten places stretched out over all the lonely miles. Holopaw’s music approximates the lonesome road traveled by many — for me, their music translates into “I should be driving somewhere, always.”
The lyrics? I’m only half sure I know what they mean, and I don’t find that frustrating at all as John Orth’s incoherent, quivering voice takes hold of the orchestrated melodies of each song. All of the lyrical abstractions come from a visual place, and a visual artist. One example from ‘Holiday’ “Periwinkles under the crush of you/dive into the chilly grit/dragging with them your last breath/I’ll thread them back into you.“ So, like the open road, the indefinable lyrical landscape that I don’t quite recognize here evokes subdued fascination. It’s good to get lost.
Quit +/or Fight is the follow-up to the band’s self-titled Sub Pop debut (a crazy-good collision of indie rock, alt-country and electronica), and builds upon their initial understated complexity. This time the songs are even denser, with more strings, winds, drunken bossa nova percussion, stomping, handclaps, wine bottles, synths, and thrift store furniture-as-instruments. This record is an exercise in unabashed imagination, a hushed-yet-ready-to-bust-at-the-seams work of art. You’re bound to uncover new experiences each time you take it for a spin