Once upon (a slice of) time, there was a sound that filled dance floors across the world. During it’s heyday in the 20s, 30s and 40s, Jazz was the genre of choice. While the genre has lasted in small forms, it is usually dismissed as nothing more than a novelty to modern ears. There are many artists out there looking to change this, and they are succeeding.
Poppy Holiday has been around for a little while, and has made waves in the world of music and media. Her debut EP Pinch Of Patience was released in 2015, but the songs have made a lasting name for her. The opener Happy is being used as the title song in a feature film; currently in post production. The same song has also been used in a short film or two. Although the songs (or song) have garnered fame in the media, is it any good?
The short answer is….yes! Poppy has an incredibly distinctive voice that calls upon a time and place, but with a modern eccentric twist. The EP opens with a catchy little track called Happy, which features a banjo played by Mike Harding. The track is incredibly bouncy and fun, the type of track that you would sing along to in the car, but possibly not admit to liking. This reviewer has certainly fell prey to it’s charms; I’ve been humming it all week. The second track, Singing In The Bath maintains the Jazzy feel of the opener, but takes it down a peg. Her vocals tend to smooth out on the slower tracks, almost resembling a young Kylie Minogue in her tone. The third track, Sexy Man, is a slight departure for the singer; breaking the theme that has been consistent until this point. It’s a duet with a French male singer, who talks and sings over an accordion infused track. It’s obviously an attempt to do something different, with a clear European influence, but it does break the flow a little. The last studio recorded track of the EP is a sensual blend of bossa nova, smooth Jazz, slow Pop and gentle ballad; showcasing Poppy’s voice perfectly. The instrumentation of this track is basic, allowing Poppy’s unique voice to shine.
The EP also includes a live song called 21st Century Women, which features the same superb musicianship and vocal quality of its former tracks. Although it slightly lacks the shine of the studio, the sound clarity is still top notch; a future live album of more raw recordings would be most welcome. Judging by the busy schedule that awaits Poppy, this has the possibility to become a reality!
Poppy Holiday may not be a name that is instantly recognisable, but her style and voice certainly is. Inspired by vintage Jazz and Pop sounds, Manchester based Poppy blends the two with a quirky and eccentric vibrancy. From the annoyingly catchy Happy to the slow and sultry Bus Stop Boy, a pinch of patience is a wondrous display of creativity.