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Wine Dark Sea

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iTunes Review

Jolie Holland flows back and forth and in and out of genres like water trickling in a stream, from pedal steel cowgirl to smoky jazz diva, from soul and gospel devotee to indie chanteuse, all within the parameters of what we think of as the singer/songwriter tradition. She has a sensuous voice, marbled with a richness that's utterly satisfying. It pairs well here with the twangy tones of “Route 30,” the gritty textures and scraping electric guitars of “On and On,” and the primitive blues of “Out on the Wine Dark Sea.” Her music has never been particularly uplifting, and it’s a delight to hear her deliver some retro- and horn-flavored R&B on the finger-snapping “Waiting for the Sun” and some pure soul on Joe Tex’s “The Love You Save.” But much of this collection is dark in nature, crawling and slithering with slow, hissing percussion, distorted guitar atmospherics, lonely piano and violin, and even tuba. Holland takes a lot of chances on Wine Dark Sea, and she does it with admirable confidence and skill.

Customer Reviews

Not What you may expect....BETTER

Okay - Can't wait for this entire to come out. If Dark Days is any indication of where she is taking us with Wine Dark Sea - This is going to be one hell of a listen! Love this new direction!

Jolie Holland, plugged in

I have been waiting for this album to drop for months and it’s finally here and better than my anticipation promised. A huge sound, electric and dark. Jolie Holland’s voice has wrapped around itself and is multi-layered and rich. Soulful. The duet on The Love You Save is one of the best things in music this year. Check it out.

Get drunk on Jolie

Such beautiful songwriting, lyrically and sonically. To listen to Jolie's album gives me a wonderful feeling of groundedness, sitting on a beautiful shore next to the Wine Dark Sea.


Born: May 17, 1976 in Houston, TX

Genre: Alternative

Years Active: '00s, '10s

Jolie Holland grew up in Texas, where from a young age she experimented with writing, playing, and singing music. By her teens she had learned piano, guitar, and fiddle, and was performing as a traveling musician. San Francisco was home for a time in the mid-'90s before Holland was on her horse again, ambling to Vancouver and founding the neo-traditionalist folk outfit Be Good Tanyas. She contributed to the Tanyas' Blue Horse LP (Nettwerk, 2001) before moving back to San Francisco. There a series...
Full Bio