"Hold On, Hold Fast is a multivariable meditation on existence and a queasy sonic exploration. The album combines Havadine Stone’s vocals and writing with Ben Baker Billington’s roving modular synth soundscapes that oscillate between the caustic and atmospheric, resulting in something plainspoken, disorienting and singularly Midwestern.
Composition for Hold On, Hold Fast began in 2020 with Stone starting the creative process, sending her vocal contribution to Billington. “I thought she might send field recordings,” he says, “but she ended up writing a long piece and reciting it.” Once Stone turned in her vocals, Billington turned to his custom modular synth, made by Matthew Regula, to create backdrops, slicing the monologue into twelve pieces. This is the Midwest without Culvers, where crop rows line the earth, where uniformity averts attention, where a few stalks back something waits, inspecting the passers by, and jotting down notes, as it has, and as it will continue to."