Friday, January 8th, 2021

Iann Dior – Holding On

Have you maybe tried letting go?


Dorian Sinclair: Literally three quarters of “Holding On” is the same two phrases repeated. If you don’t have enough lyrical or musical ideas to flesh out a two-minute runtime, maybe just shelve the song for a while?

Will Adams: Why’s he always in a mood, fucking ’round acting like this is brand new?

Scott Mildenhall: Real commitment to not acting brand new, and real commitment to maintaining a mood. Even the verse stands like a free association riff on the doggedly uncompelling themes thus far established by its burgeoning extended universe. Unfortunately though, sometimes, the longer the riff and the more extended the universe, the more boring it gets.

Jeffrey Brister: The lowest effort emo/Drake-ass song possible. Speed it up, put some real drums and distorted electric guitars in there, put the higher octave at the front of the mix, add a bridge, and just make it a pop-punk tune. Don’t give me this limp and lifeless nonsense (the melody in the pre-chorus is nice, though).

Joshua Minsoo Kim: The guitar riff is worse than the one on “Mood,” and its glossy sheen makes it sound extremely obnoxious, but it makes perfect sense when that midsong detour arrives. Suddenly, any and all brattiness has emotional depth, the reality and relatability of teenage angst and heartbreak uncovered for all to see. And then Dior snaps out of it, transforming “I’m never coming home” from depressive mantra to playful sneer. It’s a real neener-neener moment.

Juana Giaimo: This has the same happy emo (is that possible?) vibes of “Mood” and Iann Dior truly fits that spirit (I like the angst in the chorus and his louder rap flow), but I wish the beat and guitar loop offered something more interesting.

Nortey Dowuona: A clanging guitar radiates across the skipping hi-hats, thudding bass drums and light shading snares as Iann peels himself out of the hi-hats and follows the snares, then chases the falling guitar and crushing fader fall, then dryly recites the chorus as the sun falls, as he falls into —

Thomas Inskeep: Acoustic-based raps by misogynist little boys are going to haunt me until my end of days, aren’t they? Ladies & gents, the Juice WRLD legacy.

Katherine St Asaph: “I’m not gettin’ rest ’til I get you in my bed / I’m not askin’ much, baby, just give me respect.” I know the concept of “selling out” has been internetted and poptimisted and pomposified to death, but can we at least agree that using the same lyrical gag as Meghan Trainor counts?

Samson Savill de Jong: This guy’s voice makes him sound like such a twat. And then you listen to his lyrics and he sounds like even more of a twat. Another dude who thinks they’re the “nice guy” that’s being treated unfairly by a woman, while dismissing out of hand her suggestions that him being “reckless and dumb” might have something to do with it. I praised “Shady” for depicting a young teenager who’s an idiot about relationships, but that was because I got the impression the writer agreed that they were an idiot. This song has no self-reflection, and thus it is outrageously obnoxious, especially when you combine the lyrics with Iann Dior’s self-satisfied, smug and whiny vocals. At least it’s short.

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