Lofi indie pop is given a dreamy and playful makeover in “Holds Me Down,” the first single off Test Card Girl’s self-described eclectic debut album.
The song launches with a punchy, laser sharp synth riff that carries throughout its three-minute and thirteen-second run. A classic drum kit kicks off after the first call to the song’s namesake, cleanly progressing the song into the next verse. After a few choruses and a short instrumental break, the song comes to halt and introduces a natural piano for the first time, coupled with an organ and some lofty humming harmonies, flowing into the final chorus before the conclusion of the song. Test Card Girl’s cool vocal tone and dainty, echoing harmonies are reminiscent of indie pop artist, The Japanese House, but have an additional lilt that create a more jaunty atmosphere. All these eclectic sounds work together to create a song that’s lighter than air, like you’re soaring through the clouds while holding onto a single balloon, only at the mercy of where the wind blows you.
What truly makes this song so special is how it defies any preconceived ideas you may have about what makes an indie pop song. It takes so many different, adventurous directions you’d never expect it to take, but it works harmoniously and effortlessly. It feels so natural, yet so refreshing and new. Refusing to lean into any current lofi indie trends, Test Girl Card brings a joyous, genuinely delightful sound to the table-- a sound that is all too underrated in today’s largely moody indie scene.
Catherine Burgis of Manchester is the creative mind behind Test Card Girl. Done with the mundane motions of everyday adult life, Burgis began to write music and express her creativity in 2018 at the age of 34. A year later, she paired up with songwriter Dave Fidler to write and record together. At the same time, she was expressing her creativity as a stand-up comedian, where she toured the UK and proved herself worthy of multiple awards and recognitions. Fast forward to 2020, she is recording her first ever solo album. In June of this year, Fresh on the Net revered her as a “glorious mess of retro-synth sonics”.
Written by Jess Ward