Wednesday, 20 February 2013

Albums for Life: 48: Hem: Rabbit Songs

'Lord, Blow the Moon Out, Please'

That one line tells you everything you need to know about Hem.
Winsome, with religious undertones and very polite...
I guess you'd call this mellow folk music.
I'd add pastoral, melancholic and very gentle, no one hits drums here, they brush them with delicate care.
Lost love and death seem to feature prominently but you can expect the odd jig too. There's no massive development from album to album but this debut holds a place in my heart because... well, it got there first and you can't put a liter in a half pint glass.

You can download their 2006 album Funnel Cloud (also excellent) for free here on NoiseTrade:
http://www.noisetrade.com/hem/funnel-cloud
Meanwhile, here are 2 tracks from 'Rabbit Songs' 'Half Acre' & 'Idle', followed by a brief but compelling profile of the band.







6 comments:

  1. Totally new one on me - like the backing more than the voice. Half Acre is very nice

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  2. 'Very nice' indeed.
    They're not going to start any fights are they?
    It is that lack of edge that makes them strangely compelling.

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  3. Prosaic... really? I guess you've got a point about their MO being samey, but I seem to have an insatiable appetite for that sameness. One of those bands where I wonder how anyone could not LOVE their music. Sally's voice one of the prettiest around to my ears. However I've gotta realize that "mellow folk music" may not be everyone's cup of tea. But serve me up another one please!

    Enjoyed the profile clip. Humble folk and nice to see a band working live in the same room. A mystery how they make a living giving away great albums like Funnel Cloud...

    TT

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    Replies
    1. There's a word beginning with 'p' that is the opposite of 'prosaic'.
      That's the word I meant...
      I must stop composing nonsense in the early hours, for theirs is the prettiest of music.
      And 'mellow folk rock'? The categorizing of music always seems to demean doesn't it?
      They occupy a similar heart shelf as The Innocence Mission who, as I'm running out of space, I'm realizing might miss my list which is, frankly, ridiculous.
      The Noisetrade thing is part and parcel of the new industry; musicians willingly giving music away; I'm there too; not sure why other than that everyone's doing it... a 'profile' thing I reckon.
      I need to start selling me some T shirts TT!

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  4. Winsome, lose some. Makes me want to listen to The Cowboy Junkies. Is that a good thing? There's a sort of hypnotic quality.

    This is very disjointed because its late and I'm in pain - pulled my calf muscle.

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    ReplyDelete