Release Date: October 19th 2018
Reviewed by: Joshua Andre
- Everything And More (feat. Aaron Cole)
“…what i wanted to do is pull back the curtains of my heart and welcome you into what’s actually happening in my life. not just putting spiritual sounding words to a melody that’s been sung before. this is vulnerable, real, and truly the most honest i know how to be. there are two sides to every story, but they go together beautifully and they were made to coexist. the tension of ‘this’ or ‘that’, pick one or the other, and either/or is simply a mask for being afraid. if we don’t open up about our most tragic, magical, and even heartbreaking moments what are we giving to the world? another false hope? i want to put the whole thing out there in the open…” A cryptic tweet by Gotee Records a few days ago sparked my interest and had me thinking- is Hollyn going to go mainstream? Because her monologue sounded interesting, albeit a little ominous, and I was indeed apprehensive. See Hollyn released a well thought out and thoroughly enjoyable debut album a year and a half ago (and if you want to know more about her music and how she got her start, you can read my brother Jon’s review of One Way Conversations right here!) yet I found that after “Love With Your Life” and “Can’t Live Without”, the other two singles “In Awe” and “Lovely” never really took off- and I was afraid that Hollyn would be a one album wonder. Not that her first album wasn’t any good, but because I thought that the world thought it wasn’t good; plus I didn’t hear any news about Hollyn being in the studio recording anything as a follow-up song/EP/album. So naturally when word spread about something from Hollyn, I thought ‘mainstream gig’. Yet here we are with two new songs (still on Gotee Records), and it’s marketed as a ‘single’. Let me tell you, they’re the most vulnerable that Hollyn has ever recorded.
“Everything And More” features Aaron Cole on guest vocals and is musically vintage and signature Hollyn through and through. Lyrically though, it’s a relationship style melody, as Hollyn imparts to us her feelings and emotions while she is in the midst of a breakup. It’s a left-field track from the young singer/songwriter- though Hollyn has recorded ‘mainstream pop relationship’ melodies before (“All My Love” and “Obvious” are the ones that come to mind!), nonetheless the melody is super catchy, and you can tell from the passion in Hollyn’s voice, that this track is therapeutic for her as she heals from this ordeal. “Isaac” is the last song on this double ‘single’ as the focus turns to worship and trusting in God’s perfect plan, as Hollyn surrenders over her relationships to Him, which is indeed a scary notion but necessary nonetheless. It isn’t clear who Isaac is- maybe he’s the guy Hollyn was interested in, or maybe he’s a family member, however I reckon it doesn’t matter, as whoever it is, is probably inspiration for the song. As Hollyn lays everything at Jesus’ feet, we are presented with the notion that Jesus is in control over everything, and whenever we pray to Him about someone, no doubt He will answer. Maybe not in our timing, but definitely in His.
Sky is the limit for Hollyn (maybe in the mainstream, maybe not!), as we anticipate her next album, which shouldn’t be too far away. While One Way Conversations was enjoyable, personally I reckon it wasn’t that groundbreaking nor memorable (sorry, Hollyn!); but if this sophomore project is of similar calibre to “Everything And More” and “Isaac”, then maybe it’ll be Hollyn’s best thus far, and a standout in 2019! So…what are you waiting for guys? Check out these two tracks and enjoy listening!
RIYL: TobyMac, Lecrae, Tauren Wells, V. Rose, HillaryJane, Riley Clemmons