Earlier this month, I posted a piece about this Cologne five-piece, focusing on their energetic indie single “Still There.” In short, I found it to be a breath of fresh coldwave air, a slick slice of retro-alternative sound, adrenalized yet approachable. You can revisit that here.
A few weeks ago, Holygram were in town performing with VNV Nation at the Wiltern Theatre. I was hoping they’d do a headlining show in a smaller venue, because you can’t beat the intimacy, plus you’d get a full set. But the Wiltern has its advantages. The sound is fantastic, and an indie band such as this can only benefit from that. And the views are mostly good, as you’ll see in the footage below.
Just for a refresher, Holygram are essentially a modern-day mix-up of the aforementioned coldwave and alternative genres, as well as darkwave, old-school goth, new wave, shoegaze, post-punk, and Krautrock. That’s a bit of an earful, but it’s mostly accurate. Stick all that in the sonic blender and out comes the six selections they performed on 12.13.18.
Five of the six are featured on their 2018 debut album “Modern Cults,” but three of the six date back to their 2016 self-titled EP. So essentially, they’ve remastered and reissued some of their earlier material, “Still There” being one of them. But it all feels consistently cohesive.
From seeing their performance, which sounds remarkably in line with their studio recordings, Holygram have a lot of potential. I love what they’ve done thus far, even if some of it strays towards repetition – that’s the Krautrock for you. But they possess a sound, that despite their more obscure and darker tones, feels immensely listenable, even if immediacy is not on the table.
Here’s the six song set Holygram performed at the Wiltern on 12.13.18.
Holygram perform “Into the Void / Modern Cults” @ the Wiltern on 12.13.18.
Holygram perform “Still There” at the Wiltern on 12.13.18.
Holygram perform “Signals” @ the Wiltern on 12.13.18.
Holygram perform “Daria” @ the Wiltern on 12.13.18.
Holygram perform “A Faction” @ the Wiltern on 12.13.18.
Holygram perform “Distant Light” @ the Wiltern on 12.13.18.