Saturday, December 18, 2010

Hhymn - These Hands

Hear The Track Here

No dear I haven't suddenly developed a stutter, it's the band's name and they are entitled to call themselves what they like. Now, where is that gag so that we can proceed without interruptions... Nottingham, a city in the middle of the UK is famous for being the county where Sherwood Forest (and of course Robin Hood) takes place, but it's always been a steady music town as well and - as if to prove my point - Hhymn and their attendant record label Denizen Recordings are natives of the town. From all that I can gather, the word is out on this four piece band who profess to play 'melodramatic popular songs', and judging by their web presence they seem to have all their musical and promotional ducks in a row, but does the music deliver that killing blow?

**** yeah.

Mind you, it's a bit of a softer killer blow than you may have been used to but no less lethal for all that. See the description given above really fits this band, and their blend of folk, English traditional music and a modern production approach, coupled with a knockout song. What more could you desire? Why are you looking at me like that? OK, OK, I'll 'fess up. I'm not exactly keen on a lot of modern bands, but I do recognise the good ones even if I don't actually like their material, and like many people get my dose of REAL music from the ultimate master of ceremonies Jools Holland and his Later TV show. I discovered the Doves on there and, as much as I wriggle and squirm at the style, cannot deny that they write great stuff. I mention them because there is definitely a hint of them in Hhymn's These Hands, but I can't remember the Doves being this good musically.

As a native Englander swinehund I have spent my whole life surrounded by a particular sound, emanating from anywhere north of Watford but particularly where there were coal towns. These towns and industries gave birth to a musical form I personally love to death: brass bands. Not the gung-ho Army whatever versions but music that had so much heart and soul it made grown men weep to hear it. It first I was so swept up by Hhymn's splendid use of this element, it took a while for the track to fully work its way into my pleasure centres. Maybe, as I say, it was because it is indeed almost a ballad, certainly slow in pace but the emotion and beauty oozing out of it is a wonder to behold. My blog has been a great source of new music for me, with the odd surprise but none as awesomely pretty as this one.

MUST HAVE and a wonderful blend of styles.

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