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Sometimes a chorus just can’t wait. It’s too good. It has to come first. That’s the case with Hembree’s hard-hitting new single “Holy Water”. It’s only the second song released by the band but it shows a sonic ambition and clarity of purpose that’s formidable. Featuring a seamless mix of distinctly modern sounds, a timeless melody, and Isaac Flynn’s spirited vocals, “Holy Water” realizes the promise of synthetic sounds to elevate the organic into a sublime hybrid form.
The song came from a moment of uncertainty and change for Flynn, “After our first song came out I was feeling the pressure to make our second single bigger and better. I found myself putting limitations on my writing. I was following patterns, trends, whatever you want to call it to try and craft a song that was an undeniable winner. I felt like life was moving, and I was just sort of sitting there watching it go by. Only reacting when absolutely necessary. After being frustrated for several months I remember sitting in my loft telling myself, ‘I’m just going to record whatever I want; just let it all pour out, and I’m going to enjoy doing it.’ Ultimately, there’s a bit of a duality to ‘Holy Water’: part of it is an internal struggle, and part of it about everything happening in our world. I attempted to condense those ideas into this song and balance it with everything I’ve been feeling over the past year.”
Hembree’s debut single “Can’t Run Forever” earned praise from the likes of Neon Gold and found its way into heavy rotation on both of the band’s hometown (Kansas City) alternative radio stations. That support, coupled with a groundswell of grassroots listeners, led the song to be played over 500,000 times on Spotify and Soundcloud.
It’s easy to imagine “Holy Water”, expertly mixed by Joe Visciano (The Kills, Jamie XX, and Beck), reaching many times that number of people in the year to come. It’s a given it’s message of hope will resonate with all who come across it. Says Flynn: “The song started with me making a conscious decision to stop letting the bad win. I realized I was always going to be faced with adversity and the world would be filled with it. I decided it was time to do my part by embracing the obstacles and doing my best to overcome them. I really just want to be true to myself and good to others, and I want the same for other people. Perhaps that’s the message from this song.”