The Holy Pictures

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The Holy Pictures
Studio album by David Holmes
Released 8 September 2008
Genre Electronic rock, electronica, Krautrock, Big beat
Label Go! Beat
David Holmes chronology
David Holmes presents The Free Association
The Holy Pictures
The Dogs Are Parading

The Holy Pictures is a 2008 studio album by David Holmes. The album departs from the eclectic soundtrack-to-an-imaginary-film style of his previous studio albums, in favour of a more personal approach.[1] It was nominated for the 2008 Choice Music Prize,[2][3][4] awarded to the best Irish album of the year. The tracks "I Heard Wonders" and "Holy Pictures" were released as singles.

Critical reception[edit]

Professional ratings
Review scores
Source Rating
Allmusic 3.5/5 stars[5]
Drowned in Sound (8/10)[6]
The Observer 4/5 stars[7]
Pitchfork Media (7.8/10)[1]

The album has garnered generally favourable reviews, and is seen as a successful departure from its predecessors.[6] Thom Jurek, writing for AllMusic, called it "engaging, at times stunning", praising the pop aesthetic of the upbeat songs, while remarking that "there is that sadness at this album's heart that draws one in; it doesn't feel like mope or exorcism, just personal".[5] Pitchfork Media added that the closing three songs "seek to recapture a certain back-to-the-womb comfort... and prove an affecting come-down to the preceding songs' sunglasses-at-night swagger".[1] Both critics praised the final song, "The Ballad of Sarah and Jack", referring to it as "gorgeous" and "unspeakably somber".[1][5] Jurek also favoured the opener, "I Heard Wonders", calling it a "killer track".[5]

The album was seen as reflecting many influences, most notably The Jesus and Mary Chain (particularly Jim Reid's vocal style[5]), Primal Scream and Neu! in its upbeat songs and Brian Eno in its "warm production" and "limpid, wistful instrumentals".[1][5][6][7]

Appearances in other media[edit]

The track "Love Reign Over Me" is featured on the episode "Freddie" (series 3, episode 5) of the UK version of Skins.[8] The track "Holy Pictures" is featured in football video game Pro Evolution Soccer 2010. "Theme / I.M.C." previously appeared on the compilation The Oh Yeah Sessions '08 as "McCready Rides Again".[9] The song "I Heard Wonders" was featured in the opening ceremony of the London 2012 Olympics[10] and, later in 2012, as the theme for the first series of Dara Ó Briain's Science Club.

Track listing[edit]

All music composed by David Holmes, except where noted.

No. Title Length
1. "I Heard Wonders" (Holmes, Leo Abrahams, Martin Rev) 5:35
2. "The Story of the Ink" 5:22
3. "Love Reign Over Me" 3:47
4. "Theme / I.M.C." (Holmes, Abrahams) 3:55
5. "Holy Pictures" 5:19
6. "Kill Her with Kindness" 4:03
7. "Melanie" 3:59
8. "Hey Maggy" 4:58
9. "Birth" 1:07
10. "The Ballad of Sarah and Jack" (Holmes, Jon Hopkins) 4:27
Total length: 42:32

iTunes bonus tracks:

No. Title Length
11. "Return of the Nightfarmers" 4:28
12. "The Dogs They Are Parading" 3:12