Holy State's debut album Electric Picture Palace comes at a strange time as the band decided to call it a day just weeks prior to its release, and so this is not only their debut, but also their swansong. What is on offer here is an account of a band who exhibited a great deal of potential in their time together, playing some momentous shows (even taking in arenas as support to Biffy Clyro) packed with great tunes gone far too soon.
The album opens with a sort of twangy, dirty, lo-fi guitar sound ushering in the truly blistering Ride On, which is not a million miles in sound away from Hundred Reasons; the chorus is huge and the riff is infectious. It is on these faster, harder edged songs that Holy State truly shine. Further examples of this are, recent single Dial 'M' for Monolith and Medicine Hat.
The only real problem with Electric Picture Palace however, is that there is very little variation. You are essentially getting 12 tracks which don't really differ in style or tempo, leading to a sort of monotonous record which on the first few listens is, at worst, entirely forgettable.
With repeated listens however, there are moments on offer here that are absolutely worth a listen, such as the aforementioned Ride On and the glorious blasts of Age of ADHD. For a debut album there are bags of potential on offer here and it would have undoubtedly been worthwhile to watch Holy State grow and evolve as a band, but sadly it is not to be.
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