Rising from the ashes of Palma Violets, Gently Tender first begun as a reminder for Sam Fryer – once, the vocalist in one of South London’s most-hyped bands – to treat himself more softly. Joined by his former Palmas bandmates Will Doyle and Pete Mayhew, along with The Big Moon’s Celia Archer and guitarist Adam Brown, the band’s long-awaited debut album ‘Take Hold Of Your Promise!’ has been five years in the making, and marks a return to something slow and careful, rooted, and soulful. Produced by Matthew E. White, it glimmers with gospel choirs and warm bursts of horn, unearthing a spiritual kind of acceptance in the process. The world may be a burning trash-pit, and the work of striving to be a better person will never end. But in Gently Tender’s universe, at least, there’s a precious sliver of hope to be found; even in the dark shadows, you’re never watching the flames rage alone.