The latest from Manchester band Hollows came out back on the 24th of February through End of the Trail records. We listened to ‘Chequered’ and it’s clear to see why the band has enjoyed a string of new fans in the last year.
The single is self-admittedly a relatable heartbreak anthem that attempts to grapple with the bugbears of separation and angst through powerful melodies and lyrics from front man Sean Davies. A sliding, surging guitar kicks the tune off and Sean lays down a passionate vocal straight away, imposing the aforementioned motifs well. The titular ‘Chequered’ comes from the partner’s chequered dress, a memorable image that the narrative clearly has seared onto his mind as a sign of regret in separation. ‘I’d have been in awe of you in that chequered dress, if only I’d have seen you in it before you left’.
It’s just too late. The ship has sailed, yet there’s an element of acceptance amongst the heartbreak – with an euphoric breakaway: ‘"hope you find yourself, as I’m still looking for me". It’s a tale of accountability and growth as much as longing.
Speaking of growth, the spirited Manchester band has seemingly gone from strength to strength. Their most recent release ‘Ghosts’ saw multiple plays from Steve Lamacq on BBC Radio 6, John Kennedy at Radio X, as well as BBC Introducing. Lamacq labelled ‘Ghosts’ a “gatecrashing pop song”. Kennedy raved: “I should have played it sooner, it sounded epic!” and BBC Introducing are set “this band is going to break through”.
As well as the media, the fans are onside. 2022 saw the band sell out a hometown show, get a UK tour under their belt and support the likes of Peter Hook & the Light, Space, Fizzy Blood and False Heads.
The band identity is formed from a range of influences and has been likened to bands such as Kings of Leon, Stereophonics and The Strokes, with bits of post-punk and 00s Indie thrown in between.