Holly Humberstone's Record 'Paint My Bedroom Black': An Ode to Vulnerability, Femininity, and Growth
Alternative pop powerhouse Holly Humberstone recently released her highly anticipated debut record Paint My Bedroom Black. Holly Humberstone is known for her expertly chronicled depictions of loss, isolation, and the troubled transition into adulthood. This album brings out a new level of vulnerability for the UK starlet.
Holly’s life has been anything but consistent throughout the last few years. At just 23 years old and globe-trotting to perform for sold-out crowds, her emotional turmoil crackles like a live wire. The story of this album represents the quarrel between her musical drive and her longing for normalcy as she enters adulthood. There are themes of isolation and loneliness that protrude throughout the record, painting the experience of being far from home and separated from the people she loves.
The album’s title track details what Holly was going through at the time to a T, narrating love and loss while also incorporating plenty of upbeat pop sounds. When asked about the story behind the track, she said, “I had been on tour for the past year, and as much as I wouldn't swap it for anything, it felt like such a fake existence that I was living. I just wanted to shut the negativity out. When I wrote it, it felt like such a relief to get things off my chest and it turned something that was bringing me down into an upbeat song.”
Holly feels more connected with this project than anything she has put out in the past. Paint My Bedroom Black was written during an extremely dynamic time, acting as a personal journal for the ups and downs that she was going through in her personal life while also pursuing this huge creative endeavor. Another stand out track on the record, titled “Ghost Me,” opened up about the love she has for her friends and confessed her longing to be with them while on tour. “A lot of the album is about being in the dark alone in the hotel room day after day and scrolling on my phone. I was seeing my friends back at home and feeling like I should surely be there and I was confused about what the hell I'm doing in Milwaukee. It's a weird roller coaster. I've had the best times and some of the lowest points as well,” said Holly.
Holly’s melodramatic lyricism and blissful synthpop production signifies her establishment of a distinct musical identity. Her experimentation throughout her last few projects have led her to a lush and ethereal sonic landscape, as presented in the expertly produced track “Cocoon.” Reluctant to recreate the sounds that she has made in the past, Holly has been working tirelessly to produce something fresh that reflects where she is now in her musical and personal development.
From the Spongebob reference in “Ghost Me” to the dedication to her friends in “Room Service”, Holly shares several deeply personal moments on this album. Along with the honesty that she presents regarding her romantic endeavors, Paint My Bedroom Black is dedicated to the platonic love stories in her life. When asked about the meaning behind “Room Service,” Holly said, “I feel like not enough people write about platonic relationships, like with sisterhood and friends. That song is about missing my friends during lockdown. I love my friends so much and I feel like I'm so lucky to have amazing people around me all the time.”
Holly grew up in Grantham, England with three sisters, who she is extremely close with. Holly has always expressed her relationship with femininity through her music, and she is greatly passionate about creating a space with her art where femininity is celebrated. “There are so many incredible female artists right now that are writing about how they feel and not being afraid to share the most personal parts of themselves. I feel really lucky to be a part of it and to be a female and feel strong. It's cringe, but I feel like it's my little superpower.” Over the past few years, Holly has been on tour with incredible artists such as Olivia Rodrigo and Girl in Red, and she is incredibly inspired by all of the powerful females that she has in her life.
Even with her vast success, Holly is not at a loss for gratitude to her fans and situation. As humble as she is talented, Holly is bound to grow even more over the next few years. Ever since her debut single release of “Deep End” back in 2020, Holly has been settling into her sound as an artist, and with bold experimentation and a fearlessness for vulnerability, she has proven herself as a creative. Paint My Bedroom Black is a testament to her artistry, painting her experiences with a pallet of struggles, triumphs, and hauntingly beautiful melodies.
Listen to Paint My Bedroom Black at the link below:
Watch the music video for "Into Your Room":