Danish band Yung already released one of our favourite albums of the year with Ongoing Dispute, but their vocalist, Mikkel Holm Silkjær aka Holm is gearing up to release his debut solo album, Why Don’t You Dance. Named after the Raymond Carver short story from his classic collection What We Talk About When We Talk About Love, Holm says Why Don’t You Dance “made me realise I’d been in a dark place for a long time, and that I hadn’t really been vocal about not feeling well, but it was there in the songs. There was this overwhelming sense of realising things weren’t going the way I wanted. As soon as I read the story, I wrote the last song for the album.”
Today he shares lead single “Back Home”, saying: “At times you bump into compelling people that truly fascinate you. It can be in a friendly context or a romantic context. Sometimes you meet someone where it’s more the naive perception of their life, which is never quite accurate, that compels you. Nevertheless, the song is about wanting to engage in some sort of a relation with a person, but not knowing how to make it happen. In some way it’s quite a banal feeling, which is why I think a lot of people might have felt it at some point, I certainly have been confronted with that sensation once or twice. The song references a specific incident in my life, but to anyone else it might mean something different, and that is, I think, the beauty about a banality.”
“Back Home” begins with Holm’s characterful drawl draped over minimal piano keys, giving us a picture of someone, perhaps slightly tipsy, lost in that banal feeling of loneliness; “Your questioning eyes left me exposed / and you questioned my ways when I cried out for you to stay.” From there, “Back Home” picks up energy with the gradual insertion of guitars, but this only serves to emphasise Holm’s desperate isolation, his voice lifting into a beseeching lilt as he sings “won’t you follow me back home / won’t you promise me that I’m never gonna be alone.” It seems that promise never comes, as “Back Home” blusters into a full-on barroom stormer, his feelings remaining ripe and unrequited, his wishes for someone to follow him “Back Home” being cried out to the ether with no response, no hope of connection, no hope of companionship. It’s a dark but undeniably resounding song.
Listen to “Back Home” below or on streaming platforms.
Holm’s debut album Why Don’t You Dance comes out on November 12 through PNKSLM (pre-order/save). You can find him on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram.