Once a cornerstone of rock music, the once-heralded guitar solo has undisputedly fallen out of fashion.
But when a group comes along able not only able to pull off a brilliant guitar solo but give it a slick, elegant 21st century sound, it’s worth assessing whether we should brace ourselves for a return of the form.
Holy Holy’s guitarist Oscar Dawson said he’d grown up listening to classic guitar solos and said while he loved hearing them, he wasn’t expecting shrieking 10-minute interludes to come back any time soon.
“On the one hand yeah sure, that would be great, but on the other hand, there’s been plenty of that done already,” he said.
“Playing guitar solos is what I grew up doing and loved for so many years but I was aware it’s been done so much so I was looking for something that was fresh.
“You almost long for those days, but at the same time culture and music have to move forward.”
The group’s hugely popular You Cannot Call for Love Like a Dog features a soaring, atmospheric 90-second solo.
However their latest offering, Darwinism, heralds something of a departure from their previous style, more synth and vocal-heavy.
Dawson said the group was simply looking for something new to pique their interest.
“I suppose one thing might be boredom, not so much that we’re bored of guitars, there will be heaps of guitars on our record. I feel confident there won’t be any shortage of that, but we’re just trying new textures and keeping our brain and our ears interested,” he said.
“When we’re working on tunes, ideas just happen and we don’t have a choice but to go with them. There’s no point ignoring them or rewriting them so they only fit to guitars, we’re just letting it happen.”
Darwinism’s clip similarly shows a departure from style, with its minimalistic black and white, almost retro style.
Dawson said the idea was to create something clean and not “overly cinematic” in order to showcase the music as it was.
Holy Holy will perform at Karova Lounge on November 13.
For details and tickets, visit www.karovalounge.com
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