Three years in the making, Holding Back Entirely's combination of driving beats, hard guitar and bittersweet odes to love and loss defies easy categorization. Written, produced and fronted by Nikolaus Schuhbeck, the eight-song (plus) collection features irresistible, climactic rhythms, tightly arranged melodies, soaring vocals, and lyrics sprinkled with sweet, stinging irony. From the daybreak chirping of birds in "Pound," to the ripping solos in "Everyone," and "No Pity," Schuhbeck's songs feature the unbeatable combination of introspective lyrics of uncertainty, confusion and desire backed by fast-grinding guitars : a soundtrack for those moments between abject misery and sheer joy. In other words: life as we live it.
A professional musician born in Europe and educated in the United States, Schuhbeck spent over a decade criss-crossing the country, performing everywhere from Boston pubs to East Texas honky-tonks, the Sunset Strip and underground clubs in NYC. Along the way he's refined his memories, impressions, passions and politics into the collection of songs on Holding Back Entirely, a powerful new album that features odes to addiction, angst and the sweet miseries of love and living.
Critical acclaim for a self-released EP motivated Schuhbeck to produce this complete album, a feat that's taken three years of effort and inspiration. Schuhbeck's influences include everyone from Prince, Miles Davis and Rickie Lee Jones, to the latest wave of Canadian artists like Stars and Broken Social Scene. But perhaps Schuhbeck's greatest and most direct inspiration would be the great Phil Lynott, whose presence can be directly felt in many of the songs on Holding Back Entirely.
A steadily-gigging NYC musician since '98, Schuhbeck has played with David Kolker, Emily Curtis and a myriad of R&B, pop, jazz and rock artists from the smallest Bowery gin joint to a crowd of thousands in the Hammerstein Ballroom.