venus demilo are a group that have never been too far away from the forefront of the music scene in Liverpool, having already been supported to date by Tom Robinson of BBC Radio 6 Music, Dave Monks of BBC Introducing in Merseyside, Amazing Radio and Rock FM as well as several other radio stations, their brand of feel good pop has a way of making itself jump to the Spotify playlists and become part of your everyday listening.
Since a small hiatus between 2016-2019, they’ve hit back in quick succession of catchy singles and, most recently, a Live at Parr Street Studios album which catches their musicality and talent wonderfully.
It’s their latest single, Holding You, which links up a trio of singles (Sophia & Sinking Ships) aimed at promoting the benefit of talking about mental health and its importance in dealing with it head on. Said to be their most honest song to date, the bones were brought to the attention of the band (Tom Anderson (vocals, guitar), Josh Adams (guitar, backing vocals), Ryan Williams (drums) and Jake Worboys on bass) by Spring Offensive guitarist Matt Cooper, where the song took shape in Liverpool’s Parr Street Studios.
Tom comments “it’s a song about fighting off negativity. When Matt (Cooper) first played me and Josh an early version of the song, the line he wrote that instantly stood out was “remember they’re thoughts that’s all, they’re just connections and chemicals. That’s a message that people need to hear. The negative side of your brain isn’t you, it’s the chemicals in your brain telling you to perceive things negatively. For me personally, understanding that has helped enormously in those lowest moments, knowing that the battle isn’t with myself but with the way that I perceive things”.
“I think songwriting can be quite therapeutic and writing down what you’re thinking on a page can help you zoom out a bit and give perspective. When they’re in your head they’re a bit overwhelming, on a page they;re more manageable”
Needless to say the talent of the band gives them the perfect canvas to create music from, allowing a deeper delve into the meaning behind some of the lyrics in Holding You. The band’s namesake ‘The Venus de Milo’ statue, is coincidentally shrouded in mystery as the armless statue is often pondered upon to what she may have once held, some say a baby and some say more of a warrior or a fabric spinner. Either way, it’s this idea of what you make of these scenarios that gives music its ability to be interpreted in so many ways, and hopefully this openness of mental health awareness helps to bring comfort to many at a tough time.
The song itself begins gently, upbeat synth sounds with Tom Anderson’s vocals moving the rhythm along with the layers getting built up as the songs progresses. Beautiful thumping drums on this track emphasise an almost trance-like emotion, carrying with it a caged aggression with the lyrics ‘The more you try to fight the more it always wins…I know you think about it but you can’t give in’ really hits the tone that many feel that their mental health is able to, and can, dictate their state of mind.
The mantra is repeated until the end where it does feel like you need a few moment after to take in the track which means it’s done it job.
We hope that the music keeps coming from venus demilo and their message gets spread far and wide!
Listen to Holding You on all major streaming platforms now.