London artist Alex Mankoo aka Holy ’57 has returned with his first new music in a couple of years, and the first song to be shared from the forthcoming mini-album Y, which follows up H, O and L. Details are to follow about the mini-album’s release, but today he shares the new song and video “Cambridge, MA”, about which he says:
“This song was my way of processing the sense of anxiety and helplessness that I feel about the digital labyrinths of our times – that exhausting experience of living with a constant barrage of competing messages that seem to be simultaneously true yet false, moral yet amoral, important yet totally trivial, permanent yet fleeting.”
The singer’s academic background certainly informs “Cambridge, MA” (one guess as to what he’s aiming at with that title), but rather than be stuffy and hifalutin, he unwinds the associated stiffness through his playful approach. The feeling of information overload is presented through expertly layered production, blending treated audio clips, sharp guitar interplay and hyperactive electronics. Holy ’57 switches voices between a tense worry and a caricature of pompous lecturers, reflecting both those who feel inadequately prepared for the world and people who think they know it all. Deftly combining all of these ideas together “Cambridge, MA” is an art-pop delight that is at once comforting, thought-provoking and just downright fun.
The ideas established in “Cambridge, MA” are further explored in the dreamy video, which you can watch below, or listen to the song on your preferred streaming service.