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  • Lauren Nolan

Review: "Holy Smokes!" - Isabel Maria


Isabel Maria Holy Smokes! Cover Art

Fresh off of her Alan Hull award win this past January, singer-songwriter Isabel Maria has released her first of three singles funded by the award ceremony: Holy Smokes! Holy Smokes! is an acoustic anthem about a toxic car crash of a relationship. The track is earnest, relatable, and stunning. When discussing her writing process, Isabel states: "'A wise person once told me that anger is like fire - it only burns you if you hold it - so I suppose this song was my way of trying to let that fire go." And that fire burns through the whole song. With biting, sharp lyricism and a grand, dynamic instrumental, Holy Smokes! is an infectious song. It's the perfect track to sing along to in the car when you relate.




Produced by Josh Ingledew, Holy Smokes! is the definition of a power ballad. Isabel's intricate vocal mixing and the gradual building to the explosive drum-heavy chorus give the song such a singular vigor. It truly is yet another emphatic single in Isabel Maria's catalog. Holy Smokes! is a strong showcase of the artist's keen songwriting abilities. Lines like "I held my opinions, cried over the facts" are just a sample of Isabel's clever yet poetic lyricism. Her writing style is unique in its metaphor usage and storytelling while still remaining catchy. Fans of artists like Olivia Rodrigo or Phoebe Bridgers would find much to love here, with Isabel's heartbreaking lyrics and emotionally raw vocal delivery.


Isabel Maria is a Sunderland-based singer-songwriter who focuses on indie and folk music. Despite only being 17, Isabel has been creating thoughtful music for years now. Her debut single, "Catharsis," released in 2021, was an instant success, garnering support from the Sunderland Young Musicians Project and becoming a finalist in the UK Songwriting Contest. In 2023, the singer-songwriter released the EP "The Melodramatic Milers Club," which received critical acclaim and spawned several hit songs. Tracks from the EP, like "Changed Man," "Flower," and "A Guy," currently hold a collective 30,000 streams on Spotify. Holy Smokes! is Isabel's first release since The Melodramatic Milers Club and is the start of an exciting new era for the artist. You can now listen to Holy Smokes! and the rest of Isabel Maria's discography on streaming services.



Written By Lauren Nolan



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*Sponsored Post - Discovered on Musosoup. A contribution was made to help create this article.

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