“Holding Hands” is the latest single from Melis, Turkish/Czech singer/songwriter, previously a part of electronic pop duo IYES. This is the lead single from her debut EP, “Parallels” (coming out November 24).
Melis uses “Holding Hands” to weave a story of a one-sided relationship, and the frantic attempts to fix it which lead you to ultimately forget yourself. What she creates is a haunting melody that leaves you entranced.
There is something truly raw and vulnerable to this song, which is what makes it so appealing. The honesty behind the music is like jumping into cold water: refreshing and crisp. There is sorrow imbued into the music and the lyrics, and it feels like you are calling out to a lover who you would move mountains to be with, but who isn’t willing to give you five minutes of their day.
The song starts out gently, and crescendos steadily throughout the duration of the track. The music starts out fairly simple, with quiet piano strokes that are tinted with a hint of urgency and want. She frames the melody with this, with each additional instrument adding a layer of complexity and urgency to the track. The song picks up pace with each “are you ready” asked by Melis, with the music coming to the apex at the chorus. The music sounds like it is spinning around you, like dizzying spinning lights. It really captures the feelings of letting go of a one-sided relationship with the yearning and pain and the tumultuous confusion that’s roaring in your ears. The music slowly sounds more and more whole as her voice and the music gathers strength. With one last “stop holding my hand”, she is letting go of a toxic lover and becoming her own individual. It’s beautiful, haunting, and a story of finding strength within yourself.
Melis released a video along with this track. Directed by Luboš Rezler and cinetomography by Filip Marek, the film is wonderfully done. The cinematography and the color palette and lighting fits with the music very nicely. The video is full of blood-reds and muted blues and greys and whites and is just very beautifully shot and captivating. The video was filmed in Prague (a city with a long history and I would love to visit one day) and serves as an allegory of a young girl finding her place in a dystopian near-future. Drawing upon Orwellian themes, the video depicts totalitarian regimes of today and interprets the hidden meanings and emotions from the song and carefully interlaces them into the film.
Melis is a rising star and this track is just one of several of great songs by her. Definitely check out her other songs like “Sober (Over You)” and “Love Song Idea”, and check out her EP when it drops, I know I will.