Recently, I have found myself delving into the realm of experimental, ambient, droning,Ā and somewhat meditative music (see Jenny Hval & Susanna – Meshes of VoiceĀ and Tobacco – Ultima II). My mind and body respond in unique ways that leave me with residual feelings of introspection as well as anĀ overall excitement for the boundaries of music these artist are pushing.
Holly Herndon, a San Francisco artist, isĀ currently a candidate for doctoral study in Computer Music at Stanford University. Her music is reminiscent of Oneohtrix Point Never, Lorn, and Jenny Hval. She is releasing her secondĀ LP throughĀ RVNG, and has included a limited Edition of 300 2xLPs, which are hand numbered with silk screen covers.
“Holly Herndonās second album Platform proposes new fantasies and rejuvenates old optimism.
Herndon has become a leading light in contemporary music by experimenting within the outer reaches of dance music and pop songwriting possibilities. A galvanising statement, Platform signals Herndonās transformation as an electronic musician to a singular voice.
Born in Tennessee, but reared on music abroad, Herndon broke out from her formative years in Berlinās minimal techno scene to repatriate to San Francisco, where she currently lives and studies as a doctoral candidate at Stanfordās Center for Computer Research in Music and Acoustics (CCRMA).
With the progressive themes of Platform, Holly Herndon could be viewed as the 21st centuryās answer to the protest singer were she not also a composer of such sublime music. Old categories donāt fit for Herndon, just as the lineage of protest-music fails to capture the scope of Platformās appeal and its potential for mass disruption.
To achieve Platform, Herndon has opened up her process to vital artists and thinkers from her creative circle, leading by example to tackle a host of topics ranging from systemic inequality, surveillance states and neo-feudalism. Platform underscores the need for new fantasies and strategic collective action.
Among the collaborators are composer and drag performer Colin Self (vocals on āUnequalā), contemporary artist Spencer Longo (co-writer on āLocker Leakā), rogue production outfit Amnesia Scanner (co-producers of āAn Exitā), Ensemble Dal Nienteās soprano voice Amanda DeBoer Bartlett (vocals on āDaoā), Berlin Community Radioās ASMR ambassador Claire Tolan (voice on āLonely at the Topā), and radical Dutch design studio Metahaven (visuals for āHomeā). Influence of long-time collaborator and digital-DIY artist Mat Dryhurst is also echoed throughout.
Herndonās debut album Movement, released in 2012, showcased Herndonās fascination with trance and the disjunctive sampling techniques pioneered by avant-garde composition. Subsequent singles āChorusā and āHomeā ā offered in advance of Platform ā humanised the laptop by celebrating its capacity for memory-storage and lamenting its vulnerability in light of revelations of mass surveillance.
Transitioning to Platform, Herndonās music becomes even more visceral by channeling the chaos and clangor of transmediated experience. Close to a contemporized version of EinstĆ¼rzende Neubautenās industrial rhythms or Joe Meekās fantastical alien productions, Herndonās auditory palette samples the domestic and digital environments of her daily life.
Opposing the dystopic potential of a surveillance state and the specter of a monoculture, Platform seizes this unstable moment for a conscious shift in the pop and dance music conversation. Offering what Herndon describes as āa rupture, a paradisic gesture,ā Platform is an optimistic breakthrough for Herndon, an appeal for progress, and a step toward new ways to love.”
Holly Herndonās Platform will be released May 18 (UK) and May 19 (US / ROW) in cooperation between RVNG Intl. and 4AD on 2xLP, CD, and digital formats.
Limted Edition 2xLP w/ Ltd. Ed. Hand # (/300) Metahaven Silkscreen Cover (includes digital download)
- Maybe Buy
- Not My Style
- Too Expensive