Live Review: Holy Holy + Carla Geneve – The Roundhouse, Sydney (18.10.19)

Sydney’s Roundhouse was packed out on Friday night for Holy Holy, an indie rock outfit whose origins span Australia’s East coast. Having recently released their third studio album, My Own Pool Of Light, Holy Holy have garnered an intense fanbase eager to relive the best cross-section of their discography live. But first, it was Perth’s Carla Geneve to open the night.

Haven’t heard of Carla Geneve? Well, you actually very well might have. This 20-year-old played Laneway ‘19 as the Triple J Unearthed winner and has recently been announced to support Julia Jacklin in the new year. And after touring with Holy Holy, she’s sure to amass quite a following. With a sound similar to Courtney Barnett and Angie McMahon, she screams trendy observational Australian rock, which she epitomised in a song “about going to the chemist” – a journey that got her Doc Martins wet.

Her opening performance was strangely positioned to the stage’s perimeter, with the three-piece all being shrouded in the lights’ shadows. After two or three songs, I heard someone ask who was playing and it struck me that Carla hadn’t promoted her name in any way which is always instrumental for an up-and-coming artist. By the end of her set, she had the crowd applauding, so she was definitely doing something right.

But the pure musicianship was highlighted when Holy Holy took to the stage. Within the first three songs, they’d pumped out some of the big ones including ‘That Message’ and ‘Maybe You Know’, and we can safely put together the message that we knew we were in for an incredible night – huge tunes already and only bigger ones to come!

All from their most recent album, ‘Maybe You Know’, ‘Faces’, ‘Flight’, and ‘Sandra’ were played out back-to-back to get the proper listening and narrative experience, as frontman Timothy Carroll explained. The crowd was a writhing pit giving back as much energy as Holy Holy were giving out. There was a bit of dad dancing on stage and some swigging straight out of the wine bottle. Epic.

The night rolled through other tracks like ‘Straight Line’ (“makes me think of Justin Timberlake,” said Tim), their cover of Lorde’s ‘Green Light’ and the biggest hit of the evening, ‘True Lovers’.

Their 13-song set made me realise just how many great songs this band has put out over the years and it was a brilliant night to have the best of the best played live. Not only is Holy Holy an undoubtably talented tune machine, but they’re also excellent performers that really do leave you saying, “Holy moly, Holy Holy.”

It’ll definitely take me the full weekend to get my breath back.


Holy Holy continue their ‘My Own Pool Of Light’ tour. Get your tickets here.

November 1 | Torquay Hotel | Torquay, VIC (SOLD OUT)

November 2 | Forum Theatre | Melbourne, VIC

Header image by Bruce Baker

Tait McGregor