A Chat with HOL (23.01.21)

Born in Athens in 2003, Greek singer-songwriter HOL (aka Hollie Findlay) has an ever-evolving indie-pop sound. We speak with the young artist about her debut album The Chapters, phobias, future plans and much more!

OSR: What is the backstory to your release The Chapters?

HOL: The Chapters was a challenge for me to create an album in a year and I based it on some of my own experiences and some not. The idea was to create an album of chapters almost like a book with two tracks and one emotion, which is where the chapter title comes from. Example, ‘The Quest Chapter: Lost’, so starting out on a quest but you don’t know where it will lead you.

OSR: What was the writing and recording process like?

HOL: My typical writing and recording process involves plenty of fluidity. I feel that if I try too hard to make something sound or look right, it doesn’t sound as good. I try to let songs become rather than forcing them to sound a certain way.

OSR: If you could change one thing about the album what would it be?

HOL: This album was made over the span of a whole year. My music taste and even voice has changed in that time, so naturally, I could say that it would be better to make all the songs sound the way I would make them now, but that would take away the whole meaning of the album and the journey within my own songs. So, I wouldn’t want to change anything because it’s all part of the process towards where I am now.

OSR: Which was the most challenging song to write and record on The Chapters?

HOL: By far the most difficult to compose and produce because this was the time where I really transitioned from RnB and slow minimal tracks to alt-rock and indie.

OSR: Are any of the tracks particularly significant to you or is the whole album meaningful?

HOL: For me, ‘Sunset Kids’, ‘No Doubt’ and ‘The Girl I Used To Be’ are all songs which hit me lyric-wise more than any others. Mostly because I really cared about every line and word I wrote. But, of course, every song is meaningful in its own way.

OSR: What do you hope people take from your music?

HOL: I hope that if someone listens to this album they’ll be able to see it as a kind of journey in itself. As the songs are all so different from each other I hope there’ll be at least one song for almost everyone.

OSR: What is your earliest memory?

HOL: I think my memory might be the worst. I’ve only recently realised that I completely forget events and memories from the very recent past. When I try and think of my earliest memory I just picture obscure and random memories, so I would not even be sure what it would be.

OSR: What is the worst haircut you have ever received?

HOL: My own haircut when I was 12 and used the kitchen scissors to cut myself a fringe. I thought it looked great then. It really wasn’t!

OSR: Do you have any phobias?

HOL: I hate when glasses and cups are hot after being in the dishwasher and they squeak when you touch them like nails on a chalkboard. ?

OSR: How would you describe your music to a new listener?

HOL: Inventive and experimental. I like to think that my music will never be constantly the same. I hope I can surprise people with different things I bring out.

OSR: What are your future plans?

HOL: I am planning to release more singles this year, build a fanbase and hope that live music is allowed by August as I am supporting The Wendy James Band at The Waterloo in Blackpool. It has been rescheduled three times, so hopefully will go ahead this time.

Thanks to HOL for chatting with us! You can find more about HOL on her official website, Twitter, Instagram, YouTube and Spotify.

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