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Keli Holiday (Adam Hyde) returns with the video for ‘Human Nature’ from his debut album, KELI, out now via Sony Music Entertainment Australia | BMG (rest of world). The video has clear cinematic yet comical feel, with incredible shots taken across an open desert.
They say life imitates art, but in the case of Keli Holiday, art also imitates lfe. Hyde describes Holiday as a caricature of himself: “A heartbroken man who still thinks he’s the shit.”
Keli’s new album opens with ‘December’, and the chorus, “Now I’m all alone and you’re not mine.”
It’s the first song Hyde wrote as Holiday, the project he describes as being the most real and raw work he’s produced. “At first it felt quite daunting, but it became cathartic, like the feeling of getting something off your chest,” he says. “Keli Holiday is genuine, authentic and it comes from the heart.”
Heartbreak is the universal feeling at the core of the record and Hyde captures it with brutal honesty and stomach-sinking relatability. The track ‘Picnic’ describes the strain of feeling like you’re not good enough for your partner: “That feeling when someone is a beautiful picnic spread atop a pristine hill and you’re a $5 Happy Meal in the gutter.”
‘Rollercoaster Eyes’ is a reflection on the compromise and companionship of true love. “No one’s perfect, everyone’s a bit twisted and crooked. If you can see that in someone and still want to be with them, I think that’s true love,” explains Hyde.
In ‘Off My Mind’ – the album’s fifth single, which was released in January and features guitar work from Johnny Took of DMA’s – Hyde tries to convince himself he’s okay on his own by repeating the mantra: “Now I feel the sun, because I got you off my mind. Now the tears are gone, because I got you off my mind.”
The first four singles from the album – ‘December’, ‘Song Goes On’, ‘Where You Feel’ and ‘We Don’t Have To Know’ – dropped in 2021 and landed on rotation on triple j (and on repeat in the minds of all of us nursing a sore heart).
The album, which was co-produced by The Presets’ Kim Moyes, is at once candid and cathartic, revealing and relatable, helpless and hopeful. There are dizzying pop peaks – in the form of crowd favourites ‘Corolla’ and ‘Human Nature’ which features Nicky Night Time of Van She.
And there are sombre synth lows – including ‘Better’ and ‘With You’, which Hyde wrote about losing his best friend when he was 17, growing up in Canberra.
“Every time I sing ‘With You’, it hits me because it’s so real. It’s deeply emotional and personal, and it’s a piece of art that I’m really proud of. I spend every day reflecting on losing my best friend, it still fucks me up constantly, but writing the tune gave me some catharsis,” says Hyde, now 30.