There is not much to know about Through Waves. Created by transgender artist Raine Holtz, this solo act seems to challenge every concept that makes a “band” what it should be: there are no band-members apart from Raine, and rarely does he allow any other musician to contribute in recordings; there are no live concerts, as the work is far too complex and painful to be presented in front of an audience; it is entirely self-produced and self-released, being managed by Raine’s private independent label The Schooner Harbour; and it weaves, through the usage of ancient musical instruments from all corners of the world, a conceptual theme that would make most bands’ works seem trifle and mundane. There is nothing trifle and mundane about Through Waves; Raine plays in his own league.
First and foremost, Through Waves is a musical therapy project, created as a medium of interaction between Raine Holtz and the world. Through the healing quality of music as a tool of self-discovery and personal acceptance, he produces an ongoing documentation about his impressions of life as a depressed, lonely and shy person, longing for a response from the others, but ultimately afraid of actually receiving it. In this way, Through Waves becomes a vulnerable, intimate experience, meant to offer solace and understanding for those who feel they have nothing left in the world.
Elegant and thoroughly refined, the diversified music of Through Waves plays with many different musical genres and structures, becoming something way out of the ordinary guitar-based standard of current popular music: instruments such as the hurdy-gurdy, celtic harps, recorders and woodwinds, bowed strings, accordion and a vast array of hand-percussions from Latin, Middle-Eastern and African origins create alongside with synth pads and electronic landscapes a distinct atmosphere that would categorize the project as “world fusion”, “darkwave” or “ethereal”. But even art-rock, progressive influences and gothic ambiences are present, enriching the music to astounding levels. And it all comes from a single person, composing, writing, recording, mastering and eventually releasing it, with an unmatched sensibility, even in the midst of independent music scenes (and certainly in the midst of brazilian pop culture).
Since 2006, Raine has been working with Through Waves, and released under the private label The Schooner Harbour a series of albums, EPs and singles. While presenting his own music live in rare occasions (so rare in fact, that we might simply put it as “never”), the fascination for Traditional music from a myriad of different cultures takes him out in the streets of his city, busking with a hurdy-gurdy and presenting a complete different approach in the way of sharing his music: a very intimate and incredibly rich offering to the passing crowd, proving that diversity and flexibility are two key-words to describe this seriously underrated project, silently humming its enchanting magic below our noses for long and bleak years.
This is Through Waves, the most beautiful music no-one has ever heard.