Tough Love Records (Ulrika Spacek, The Proper Ornaments) drop their first EP by Danish polymath Holm, an artist who has already made records with Yung, Brooch, Tears and more. The four tracks of Dappled are rough-and-ready home-taping that skirts the line between bedroom indie and twee-punk. Songs like 'Hope' evince a neat way with harmony and melody. Yo La Tengo, Frankie Cosmos, Girlpool and more spring to mind.
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Attention people who own guitar rock records and an overflowing bucket of feelings: this one is for you. The four earth-scorched guitar songs contained within this EP belong to Danish band Mikkel Holm-Silkjær, who makes bizarrely shaped emo tunes that sound made on tracing paper that’s then been torn up and thrown towards the nearest bin. “Hope” is a hot jangly mess, taking swipes at its own melodies in bursts of frustration. The use of these contradicting structures -- hooks as clear as day getting bastardised ‘til they’re indecipherable -- makes for an endlessly fun version of a deeply melancholy record.
It’s as if a polymath has been given a very specific set of tools and been asked to dig his way back into an open world where everything’s available. The guitar grain and bleating drums make this record feel economical, Holm-Silkjær making simple songs with oft-crafty solutions. The record’s title track is a simple, emotively lilted rock song with a programmed drum and a spindly guitar pattern, echoing the post-punk ruminations of Trust Punks. “Erase Repeat” is his sound countrified, given an Alex G slant via a hint of acoustic plucks and a vocal delivery halfway between whining and mumbling.
He does a lot with a little and it’s good: this sound spread into a whole record would be a very exciting thing indeed, though you’d think that with a sound this jerky, this antsy, Holm will be using this as a template for only a quarter of his sound. ‘Dappled’ is an inventive, untuned, evocative little temper tantrum.
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