A Chat with HOLY B (29.07.2020)

HOLY B is an experimental musician creating a fresh and unique sound. While he is a progressive electric bass player, he is using a mix of hypnotising grooves, rough sounds and pop-culture references to captivate his audience. This experimentation shines through in his first EP Adventures in Lo-Fi – Vol 1. We sat down with HOLY B to talk about the EP, his music and much more!

OSR: Was there a person or experience that lead you to realise that music is the career for you?

HOLY B: My real first experience that had an impact on me was when I started going to concerts in my teenage years. I was blown away by the energy music can create. Ever since, I feel like I want to be part of this magic and create and share it.

Those experiences were motivating me a lot to play the bass, but I was not having enough time to do it as I wanted. I remember asking myself one day if I should leave it as a hobby or try it full-on. I decided to go for it.

OSR: As a traditionally trained bass player, what drew you to experimental electronica?

HOLY B: At one point, my curiosity took over. I felt, if I want to be a contemporary bass player/musician, I needed to adapt to the zeitgeist and find my own voice through exploring and experimenting with what is around me in this time. I started a solo project The Dark Side of Bass which explored the bass guitar as a sound source. I recorded an experimental audiobook including effects, percussions, noises and also voice. Shortly after that, I added my first synthesizer and off I was. I got sucked into the realm of DIY, synthesizers and sounds.

OSR: Adventures in Lo-Fi – Vol. 1 is your first EP, were you nervous about creating and releasing it?

HOLY B: Yes, I was, at least about releasing it. The whole process that was involved in my development is very personal. Creating it felt liberating and exciting because I only had an abstract concept in which I could experiment and be open also to intuitive twists. That was a lot of fun and I learned a lot as well.

OSR: What was the creative process like for the EP?

HOLY B: After all that experimentation, I wanted to bring together both realms, the one of an electric bass player and the one of the electronic music world. I created some kind of guideline/concept for myself, that gave me a lot of freedom for experimentation. One of the restrictions was to work exclusively with a sampler and my bass guitar. So I started to make some beats, sampled some bass and putting together tracks.

At one point a friend of mine gave me a fretless bass and I didn’t want to miss the chance to record something with it (I just sold mine a couple of months earlier and, of course, I regret it). That was the motivation for ‘Lo-Fi Blues’.

When I thought about how I want to put it together, I came across a track I did with Denis Androic, who sampled my bass for that track, aka. perfect intro vibes. The outro came out of a jam with producer Fred Red. We just played around and recorded. One day he just sent me that snippet of that recording session and we both digged it. I am happy that all those things happened on the way and I am even more curious about what is going to happen in the future.

OSR: Do you have a favourite and least favourite song?

HOLY B: ‘God loves you’ is the first song I made on my sampler. I have heard it too many times and the kitschy hook doesn’t help to like it more. (laughs)

I really dig ‘Be water my friend’ as well as the two collaborative tracks, ‘Trashday Minimalism’ and ‘Wickedness’.

OSR: What is an average day like for you?

HOLY B: There is no average day for me. That is something that I really like about my life. In any case, I can’t do without a good coffee in the morning. The rest of the day is usually filled with sitting in front of my laptop, checking emails, doing organizational work and making music.

During the lockdown, I had the chance to finally focus all day on creating and finishing things. I really enjoyed that a lot.

HOLY B Adventures in Lo Fi Vol 1 cover

OSR: If this EP was an animal, what would it be and why?

HOLY B: Some kind of futuristic bubbly being that can glow in neon colours and spreads world peace through telepathic abilities, which we cannot understand yet. You may call this thing alien or strange or just a futuristic bubbly being, most probably from a “Rick and Morty” or “Midnight Gospel” episode. Why? I like their imagination, humour and the psychedelic edge.

OSR: If you could have people remember one thing about you, what would it be?

HOLY B: A person, who is doing cool stuff and doing something different. I think it is important to exchange ideas and thoughts, inspire and constantly push each other further. These days are more than crazy and we need to take care of each other.

OSR: Would you consider collaborating with other artists? If yes, who and why?

HOLY B: Certainly. I am really in love with the two collaborative tracks on the EP, and I find working with inspiring and amazing people can just influence you in a positive way.
There are so many amazing people out there, doing amazing stuff, but if I have to think about specific artists, I would like to collaborate with Micachu. I have been a huge fan of her for some time already and I love what she does.

Another person I am more than curious to try something together is Beatdenker. He is a good friend of mine and he is cooking up something incredible, I would love to join forces with him.

OSR: What are your plans for the next 6 months?

HOLY B: The last months were very intense and productive. So I’d like to spend some time in nature soon. In September, I’ll be heading to an artist residency, which is taking place in Austria in the Alps. I am hoping to get the portion of nature and calmness there before I am getting back to work on Adventures in Lo-Fi – Vol. 2, which I’d like to release at the end of the year/beginning of 2021.

My friends of Ark Noir from Munich are releasing their remix album at the end of October, for which I contributed two tracks; and in between, I’ll be working on a DIY-controller for some visuals in my live-shows. Like I said in the intro of the EP: “This is just a start!”

Thanks to HOLY B for chatting with us! You can find more about him on his Facebook, Instagram and Bandcamp.

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