My Rating: Add It To My Playlist! [4.0 / 5]
Holly Starr’s fourth studio album, Human, will be available on September 15th. The songs on Human are the soundtracks to both “seasons of great joy and seasons which we wish we could erase.” Holly Starr says that “writing songs from all these moments has been the heartbeat behind [her] music from the very beginning.” These songs allow listeners to find mutual understanding in the experiences that unite us together as humans.
“Run The Race” makes two appearances on the album – the original recording and a remix. Both are full of energy and seem written for dancing. The synth and drums accompany lyrics that broadcast a hopeful message: “don’t lose hope; this is not the end.” It is a song calling for endurance, pulling its lyrics from Hebrews 12:1-3. Musically, it definitely feels like a song that will keep you going – and maybe even dancing - as you aim for the finish line.
“Human,” featuring Matthew Parker, speaks to the complexity of human experience. It’s another synth-filled song with an electronic feel. The lyrics remind us that our flaws make “us human, that’s what makes us feel.” And it reminds us “that grace is real” despite our imperfections. Holly’s vocals are strong and clear as she sings these lyrics, and the overlap of her lead vocals with Matthew’s voice and background vocals, creates beautiful harmonies and depth.
Lyrically, “Sailing,” tells a story of a journey that is, no doubt, personal for Holly while still holding universally applicable truths like: “no one can escape it, we’re sailing through time.” The song was inspired by Holly’s grandmother’s life story, and it stands out musically as one of the more acoustic songs on the album. It is a truly beautiful song both lyrically and musically.
Holly Starr’s Human encompasses a wide range of sounds and styles throughout the songs. However, the hopeful and honest messages in the lyrics are consistent. Each song feels genuine and heartfelt, and the album as a whole is incredibly encouraging. These are songs that will help you celebrate in the good times and endure in the bad.