Holy ’57 – “Diorama”


A creative whirlwind of a new single from Holy ’57, “Diorama” impresses with a richly expansive soundscape. Flurries of brass, guitars, and synths construct invigorating melodies amidst a variety of vocal-based twists and turns. Enthralling funk-laden pop builds to a dramatic, sax-featured bridge around 01:20, as suave vocals lead toward another expansion. The project of London-based songwriter-producer Alex Mankoo, Holy ’57 has impressed in the past with the track “Jep Shuffle,” and with “Diorama” touts a newly realized aesthetic vision, one that wholly impresses with its lively sound, infectious melody, and an inspiration that is near and dear to Mankoo.

“‘Diorama’ is a very personal track for me,” the artist writes. “It pulls together my Indian ancestry, my reflections on the colonial history of the UK, and my love for jazz and hip-hop. Inspired by my grandmother, it’s a sort of pro-immigration that contains parts of a speech I gave at my mother’s funeral. I remember as a child she used to enjoy reading my palms, so in this song I wanted to explore the idea that her hands presented an incredible life story – of family, of power, of culture, and of migration.”

“Diorama” and other memorable tracks from this month can also be streamed on the updating Obscure Sound’s ‘Best of October 2020’ Spotify playlist.

The track is also featured in the genre-based, best-of Spotify compilation Emerging Indie Funk.

Mike Mineo

I'm the founder/editor of Obscure Sound, which was formed in 2006. Previously, I wrote for PopMatters and Stylus Magazine.

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