Montreal-based artist, producer, engineer and remixer Patrick Holland announces his debut album today. Holland has been known in the past for his electronic releases under aliases such as Project Pablo and Jump Source, as well as his production and remix work for artists such as TOPS, Cut Copy, Jacques Greene, Homeshake, and more. Now with his forthcoming record entitled You’re The Boss, Patrick Holland is re-introducing himself and making his first foray into guitar-driven indie pop. Written and recorded in tandem, You’re The Boss finds Holland self-producing, playing almost every instrument on the record, as well as singing and writing his own lyrics for the first time. Though it’s full of firsts, You’re The Boss sounds like the work of an indie artist decades into their career.
To celebrate the announcement of You’re The Boss, Patrick Holland shares the album opener and first single. “Sinister Bell” is an earworm featuring sunny guitars and velvety harmonies, courtesy of the members of TOPS on backing vocals. “The song is about coming to terms with being haunted by a ghost. Whether it comes in the form of subconscious anxiety or physical paranormal activity, it’s all the same to me,” Holland says of the track. “There’s a camaraderie in the haunting relationship with the ghost, and the result is rarely fear. The ghost felt like a travel partner while on tour – making noise and breaking gear, but keeping the mood light. It was fun while it lasted.”
On the “Sinister Bell” music video, director Erin O’Connor says “Sinister Bell speaks to the feeling of being haunted by yourself which inspired the ghost hunting show premise. I feel lucky to have worked with and learned from Pat.”
Despite covering a lot of sonic ground, You’re The Boss also sounds remarkably cohesive, a testament to Holland’s airtight production and mixing capabilities. There’s tension on this record despite its gloss, to be sure – experimenting with lyricism and singing for the first time was an exercise in vulnerability for Holland, and the resulting reflections find him grappling with self-doubt. While it’s a stylistic pivot from the house and ambient textures of his prior releases, the keen melodic sensibilities that have always underpinned his music are on full display here.
It’s ironic, in a way, that an album about relinquishing control would turn out to be such a masterful display of creative faculty. Long-standing fans of Holland’s will find this unsurprising. Though it’s full of firsts, You’re The Boss sounds like the work of an indie artist decades into their career.
Photo Courtesy: Briggs Ogloff