“I wrote The Walls Are Way Too Thin about a time in my life when I felt like I’d lost control of where I was heading and struggling to find my place in the world. I’d just moved to a small London flat and felt claustrophobic and alone. To avoid confronting how I was feeling I’d sneak out the flat and go on train journeys to see my mates, get drunk, then come back hungover through the night and early hours. I wrote most of the Walls and the songs that come next on those trains. It was my place of therapy, in the middle of nowhere, constantly moving with no destination.” – Holly Humberstone.
Holly Humberstone is an artist with a deep understanding of storytelling, and her brand new single ‘The Walls Are Way Too Thin,’ was written during an intense period of feeling claustrophobic and lost in a new flat, in a new city, far away from home. Exploring new territory sonically, with brooding, heavy production, ‘The Walls Are Way Too Thin’ is a landmark single for Holly, both in her remarkable songwriting and phenomenal visuals. The official video is a cinematic triumph and reflects the sheer panic and isolation of never feeling at home in your own home. A collaboration with director Raja Virdi and inspired by blockbuster cinema, the 21-year-old is stuck in an air vent of a burning building trying to find her way out, “Shooting the video was chaotic and my elbows and knees look quite different now after 8 hours of crawling back and forth. The fire blast in the vent was totally real and I’m not going to lie, I was shitting myself!” says Holly of filming her most groundbreaking visual yet. ‘The Walls Are Way Too Thin’ is out now on Polydor Records, Darkroom and Interscope Records, and Holly will be doing a special performance on Later… with Jools Holland on 28 May.
‘The Walls Are Way Too Thin’ follows the immaculate and deeply personal ‘Haunted House’, which was an ode to the crumbling, haunted house she grew up in, and shows Holly’s ability to hone in on particular coming-of-age moments and create a universal story around them. It’s no surprise that the Grantham based artist is one of the breakthrough stars of 2021, coming runner up in the BBC Sound of 2021 and her debut EP Falling Asleep At The Wheel has now surpassed 100M streams.
Breaking through during the year that Covid changed the world has meant that Holly’s home environment has been even more intrinsic to the creative process. Her music videos and the short film ‘On The Run‘ all weave the story of her adolescence together and easter eggs are scattered throughout. When Holly was invited to perform on The Late Late Show with James Corden, she used the fact it had to be filmed remotely to pick up the Falling Asleep At The Wheel storyline, finding herself being thrown into the back of a police van for fictional crimes committed earlier in the tale. Some of the biggest global superstars including Demi Lovato, Camila Cabello and Matt Healy have taken note of the interior and exterior world she has created, which has led to Holly confirming an upcoming collaboration with the 1975 frontman, in her highly-anticipated second EP, due later this year.
From being chosen as Apple’s Up Next Artist and VEVO DSCVR’s Artists To Watch 2021, as well as selling out four headline shows at Omeara, the 21-year-old has also been heralded internationally by the likes of The Sunday Times, NME (5*), The Guardian, i-D, ELLE, Billboard, Triple J, BBC Radio 1 and Apple Music, as well as continued playlist support from BBC Radio 1. Holly has also performed on Jimmy Kimmel! Live, as well as being hand-picked to perform at BBC’s Music’s Introducing Live, and featured in VEVO’s DSCVR At Home series, but at the heart of Holly’s creative output are the poetry books she was raised on and the music created with producer Rob Milton (Easy Life). Holly’s songs embrace and translate some of life’s most intense feelings in a way that typical conversations all too often fail to capture, from mental health struggles to the dizzying feelings of displacement as you grow out of adolescence, with lyrics laced over distant buzzes, ethereal echoes and wonky, warped glitches, capturing the sounds of nighttime in the world the rising star has created.