John-Paul and Jannina Norpoth make up musical group Hollands. Record titles can be a strong clue as to what to expect from an album; their third and newest release—aptly titled Restless Youth—features a range of sounds and instruments that truly coincide with its name.
Hollands have taken rock instruments, symphonic strings, and dance beats and layered them together in a way that doesn’t lose the value of each note played. The lead vocalist delivers his words with a precision that allows lyrics to be heard clearly above the production. Each sound is heard with a crisp clarity, plus there is a certain catchiness to their music that gives you no choice but to get lost in it.
Don’t let the subtle introduction fool you; “Always” is a soft song that swiftly erupts into the energetic “Great White Shark.” “Stoner Lawyer” has a grandiose entrance with a tonality that borders eerie and sultry. Opening with a delicate melody, “Defeat” then segues into an energetic song with a static accent. “Sugarplums” starts off with an alarm-like buzz, and throughout we can hear beautiful melodies that are occasionally interrupted by guitar riffs.
Hollands manage to capture the beauty of complexity and how it can credit much of its beauty to precision. The musicians seem to be well aware of this, and put their skills on display on every track. As previously mentioned, titles can be helpful in revealing the characteristics of a piece of work, but despite the youthful reference in the title, this album is not to be considered amateurish.
In A Word: Vigorous