Out 6th November via Severn Songs with a limited run of vinyl coming soon, this EP is a tribute to her grieving process and subsequent creative rediscovery after recovering from breast cancer in 2021. Holysseus Fly’s Birthpool is a truly special six-track EP that brims with magnetic strength, devastating emotion, and heartfelt beauty. 

Stream the album here.

Opening proceedings with the first song written for the EP, ‘Bloom’, a track borne of self-imposed pressure during lockdown to write again after recovering from treatment, the scene is set for the EP’s themes of creative reclamation. Holysseus sings ‘I’ll bloom when I choose to’, a statement of determination to create for only herself. As the sonics progress from a skeletal beat through to a deep, harmonically-rich drop, driven by Holysseus Fly’s captivating vocal, the EP’s opener registers high on strength via stunning vulnerability.

“I started writing Birthpool in Spring 2021 when I was feeling low recovering from treatment for Breast Cancer. Just like a seed having been planted in winter, I cared for a growing garden of creative ideas and allowed myself to write what I really wanted. I had been holding myself back with self doubt and fear that expressing my feelings about cancer would make it my identity as an artist. Looking back on the process of making the EP, I see this music as a true and honest reflection of moving through post-cancer grief and nurturing a new creative identity. This is my Birthpool.”

Holysseus Fly

‘Marigold’, released as a B-side to ‘Bloom’, is as devastating as it is beautiful. Brooding keys and a steady heartbeat kick drive the track as Holysseus’ yearning vocal builds to its heartbreaking climax, cracking with emotion. Easy to hear why this had big support from Annie Mac on her Chill Playlist and Jamz Supernova’s ‘Hit Reset Track of the Day’ on 6 Music on its release. ‘Within The Water’, sees the artist working through her fears via another soaring, heavenly vocal performance which received huge support on its release from Tom Robinson’s BBC Introducing Mixtape, as well as an audio walk feature on BBC 6 Music with Chris Hawkins and seen here discussing on ITV News. In ‘Under Your Sun’ we see the singer’s jazz roots come to the fore in a mellow soundscape topped with deliciously soulful vox that convey lyrical themes of creative rebirth and strength through adversity with typical aplomb.

Holysseus Fly expands themes of empowerment with a lightness of touch on ‘Teach Me’, produced by The Staves’ Rob Pemberton and recently added to the BBC 6 Music playlist. A challenge to undermining patriarchal voices, we see the artist step into her main character energy with a knowing side swipe at anyone who might dare come for her. A feminist flag in the sand delivered with signature radiant vocals and one of many ‘chef’s kiss’ moments on the record. Closing Birthpool is the gut-wrenchingly gorgeous ‘A Weight Too Heavy’. The track swirls with grief, self-examination, and a sense of release after a period of intense mourning. The shatteringly lyric ‘I can’t look for the ‘why’’ is delivered with rawness and intensity and confirms Holysseus Fly as an artist with a real gift for emotional honesty, not to mention heart-stopping vocal abilities. Deeply moving, sonically captivating, and truly remarkable, Birthpool is a jaw-dropping debut from this one-of-a-kind artist. A spellbinding start turn and solo debut from the Bristol based vocalist, songwriter, and pianist. Do not sleep on witnessing her incredible journey through rebirth and rediscovery live with November’s shows likely to sell out as quickly as her previous dates. Holysseus Fly will also be supporting 6 Music’s Tom Robinson on his forthcoming sold-out UK tour. Big things lie ahead for this exceptionally young talent.