Having fallen deeply for Welsh rock band Holding Absence, I have already thrashed the three tracks they’ve had available on Spotify, finding it hard to determine a favourite out of “Dream Of Me”, “Permanent” and “Penance”. Thankfully, we’ve been blessed by “Heaven Knows”, a brand new track to tide us over until the band’s album.
Holding Absence’s love affair with black and white aesthetic continues into the world of “Heaven Knows”, where overlayed and projected footage craft a sense of not seeing the full picture that you want to see, which is very fitting given what the song shares.
As we could assume from the track’s title, faith is the subject of “Heaven Knows”. A monotonous introduction shares a sombre and defeated statement of faith that has reached (or is soon to be reaching) its limits. They are desperately praying, and seeking to be heard, but is there anyone to hear? Is there anything to be gained?
Vocalist Lucas Woodland consistently hits the mark with emotion woven in the words he shares and “Heaven Knows” is no different, allowing him to express defeat and emptiness, fire and fury (think along the lines of screaming “SHOW YOURSELF!” toward a higher power), frustration at hitting dead ends, and softened vulnerability.
The ability to share from hard-hitting massiveness through to tender gentleness exists through the entire band, giving Holding Absence a curiosity where you’re not entirely sure what they’ll be doing next, just that you know you’ll feel something, and it’ll be good.
“Heaven Knows” seems to lean toward the concept of suicide, with the broken and defeated screaming to seek help from something they don’t know even exists. The finality is most easily noticed in “To everyone I’ve ever loved”, “I hope you never forget that” and most powerfully “I’m still alive in all I’ve touched”. The desperation in the final screams as well as what could be seen as ‘life flashing before your eyes’ also adds to this theory.
Listen and watch and see what you think: