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Hollie Kenniff | We All Have Places That We Miss (2023)


Active as half of synth/dream pop duo Mint Julep since the 2000s, Hollie Kenniff began releasing solo material in 2019. Departing from the group’s hook-heavy, often danceable pop songs, her own music is lush, hazy, and a bit nostalgic, blending ambient synths and chiming guitar melodies with wordless, textural vocals… AllMusic
Kenniff’s second LP for Western Vinyl, We All Have Places That We Miss, is a chorus of cloudlike synths, seraphic strings, humming drones, and reverb drenched shoegaze guitars, all melding into an impressionistic story of remembrance, loss, family, and connection… Western Vinyl
The beauty of Kenniff’s music is that it is alive with emotion, and we can imprint our own images upon the pieces. Some feelings are universal though it might not be a home or a favourite place we have lost. We rated The Quiet Drift very highly – it was our second favourite album of 2021 – and it’s possible we felt so strongly about it then because it felt like being in the company of an old friend and that was what we needed at the time. It was a record that captured our imagination and touched our hearts… A Closer Listen

Hollie Kenniff: We All Have Places That We Miss

The album opens on “Shifting Winds,” quickly giving way to “Salient,” forming a deeply emotional dual prologue that wraps echoing guitar notes loosely around Kenniff’s vocals and piano. “Eunoia” cements the aesthetic with flits of piano from Hollie’s husband Keith Kenniff, aka Goldmund. This track perfectly exemplifies the couple’s shared aptitude for head-on sentimentality without so much as an eyeroll, provoking deep affect while skillfully bypassing the saccharine. Here, near the album’s midpoint, “Momentary” reveals the kosmische side of We All Have Places That We Miss, employing digitized vocal shimmers and quick synth sequences that wouldn’t be out of place on a Harmonia album. Another outlier, “Carve The Ruins,” is anchored around the album’s only moments of percussion: a soft, low kick drum throbbing beneath a topsoil of chorus-y guitar, resulting in the gentlest post-punk possible. These moments shift the gorgeous New Age leanings of the album into subtly unsettling territory, adding the frayed edges needed to convey the more difficult emotions brought about by time’s passing.
“The landscape and pace of life of these places will always stay with me,” Hollie recounts of the Ontario lake she visited from infancy until the onset of the pandemic, when her family made the difficult decision to relinquish their multi-generational home-away-from-home. “I thought about how many people are missing places that are important to them. Sometimes grief feels isolating, and it felt like I was mourning the loss of a place that mattered greatly to me.” With all of this in mind, We All Have Places That We Miss becomes a scratched up polaroid rendered three-dimensional through the power of sound, offering a counter-intuitive certainty of the past through the ambiguous lens of the present.
The setting that inspired the album– the lakeside hideout Hollie recounts– is hallowed ground loaded with family history. Her grandparents built this lakeside cottage where her parents eventually met as teenagers, and her father is now buried a short distance from that same place.
Now with her own family to look after, Kenniff feels the unrelenting procession of life ever more palpably. “Whenever I visited the lake,” She explains, “I felt like my father’s presence was still there and that my sons experienced a place he loved more than anywhere else.” Western Vinyl

1. Shifting Winds (4:12)
2. Salient (4:21)
3. Eunoia (3:28)
4. Momentary (4:28)
5. Start Where We Are (4:02)
6. No End To The Sea (4:28)
7. Carve The Ruins (3:49)
8. Amidst The Tall Grass (3:42)
9. Between Dreams (4:27)
10. This Division (3:31)
11. Remembered Words (5:10)



Product Dimensions ‏ : ‎ 4.92 x 5.51 x 0.39 inches; 1.41 Ounces
Manufacturer ‏ : ‎ Western Vinyl
Original Release Date ‏ : ‎ 2023
Label ‏ : ‎ Western Vinyl
Number of discs ‏ : ‎ 1

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