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Rabbit Songs

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Editorial Reviews

Barnes & Noble - Lydia Vanderloo
The Hem story began with a homemade tape of Sally Ellyson singing lullabies, sent in response to a want ad in The Village Voice, and so begins their lovely, haunting debut, with a fragment of Ellyson cooing the blues-tinged lament "Lord, Blow the Moon Out Please" from that cassette. The Brooklyn group's homespun, easygoing folk music, occasionally fleshed out by orchestration, made Rabbit Songs an instant hit with the NPR crowd when the public radio network championed the disc on air and on its web site. The band's sunny luck, however, belies the album's moody, melancholy songs, which capture heartache and loneliness. Echoes of the Cowboy Junkies or Joni Mitchell ...
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2005-05-24 Audio CD New NEW-IT IS BRAND NEW-It is still in its original factory seal, It is free from any foreign markings.

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Editorial Reviews

Barnes & Noble - Lydia Vanderloo
The Hem story began with a homemade tape of Sally Ellyson singing lullabies, sent in response to a want ad in The Village Voice, and so begins their lovely, haunting debut, with a fragment of Ellyson cooing the blues-tinged lament "Lord, Blow the Moon Out Please" from that cassette. The Brooklyn group's homespun, easygoing folk music, occasionally fleshed out by orchestration, made Rabbit Songs an instant hit with the NPR crowd when the public radio network championed the disc on air and on its web site. The band's sunny luck, however, belies the album's moody, melancholy songs, which capture heartache and loneliness. Echoes of the Cowboy Junkies or Joni Mitchell drift within these grooves, but Ellyson's sweet, sorrow-hung voice and the lovely musical arrangements, rich with piano, mandolin, pedal steel, and tinkling glockenspiel, give Hem a distinctive sound with its own resonance. On the mournful "When I Was Drinking," she recalls a relationship lost to excess, the twang of pedal steel reinforcing her bluesy moan. "I should wake up this town/ My heart's on fire," she quietly announces in "Leave Me Here" but you can hear the resignation that forecasts the song's about-face, and sure enough, Ellyson snuffs out early expectations as she croons, "Tonight love feels nothing like heaven/Don't leave me here." Things look up a bit on "Idle (The Rabbit Song)," a measured celebration of love -- momentary, at least -- and the gorgeous string backing will certainly have you swooning. Hem's world may be full of half-empty glasses, but these warmly wrought songs and Ellyson's soothing voice make for some of the brightest music news of 2002.
All Music Guide - Travis Drageset
Quoted as wanting to make a record "we could love the rest of our lives," Hem spent a year on this collection. The idea was to combine their love of traditional American music with the lushness of the occasional 18-piece orchestra, a good choice considering the sweet, crystalline quality of the vocal work by lead singer Sally Ellyson. Ellyson had never sung professionally before, but answered an ad in The Village Voice with a cassette of lullabies she'd recorded for a friend's child, and the set begins with a snippet of what was on that tape -- a few lines unaccompanied from the traditional "Lord, Blow the Moon Out Please." Her voice, untarnished, as it may have been by spending nights on end singing in smoky bars, was worth waiting for. Rabbit Songs' sound is lyrical, melodic, and pure. It was recorded in the old-fashioned, non-digital manner and that devotion to tradition is apparent in each song, whether in simple and sparse arrangements or full of strings and glockenspiel. The songs, which speak of devotion, loss, and voyeurism, don't try to sound old -- they just have an effortlessly timeless appeal. "Betting on Trains," with its simple ebb and flow, is particularly lovely; "When I Was Drinking" speaks knowingly of disappointment, the effects of which are punctuated by swirling pedal steel; and "Horsey" swoons along to the old-time violin work of Carol Sharar like a relic from the past.
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Product Details

  • Release Date: 5/24/2005
  • Label: Rounder / Umgd
  • UPC: 011661324824
  • Catalog Number: 613248

Tracks

Disc 1
  1. 1 Lord, Blow the Moon Out (0:26)
  2. 2 When I Was Drinking (3:44)
  3. 3 Half Acre (3:23)
  4. 4 Burying Song (1:13)
  5. 5 Betting on Trains (2:44)
  6. 6 Leaving Me Here (3:50)
  7. 7 All That I'm Good For (3:24)
  8. 8 Idle (The Rabbit Song) (3:44)
  9. 9 Stupid Mouth Shut (3:24)
  10. 10 Lazy Eye (2:26)
  11. 11 Sailor (3:00)
  12. 12 Polly's Dress (1:12)
  13. 13 Night Like a River (3:47)
  14. 14 The Cuckoo (2:57)
  15. 15 Waltz (2:41)
  16. 16 Horsey (3:34)
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Album Credits

Performance Credits
Hem Primary Artist
Peter Bucknell Viola
Bob Hoffnar Pedal Steel Guitar
Carol Sharar Violin
Andy Stein Violin
Mary Wooten Cello
Liuh-Wen Ting Viola
Jeffrey Ellenberger Violin
Hannah Emlen Cello
Gary Maurer Guitar, Mandolin
Heather Zimmerman Violin
Mark Brotter Drums
Patti Monson Flute
Technical Credits
Greg Calbi Mastering
Gary Maurer Producer, Engineer
Geoff Sanoff Engineer
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Customer Reviews

Average Rating 4.5
( 8 )
Rating Distribution

5 Star

(5)

4 Star

(3)

3 Star

(0)

2 Star

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1 Star

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Sort by: Showing all of 8 Customer Reviews
  • Anonymous

    Posted October 1, 2010

    Awesome!

    Norah Jones should take note!

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Anonymous

    Posted October 1, 2010

    Fresh & New

    In this age of commericialized artists and billboard hits that offer nothing new, I have finally discovered the most refreshing approach to new music in years. Not only are the songs well crafted, the order placement on cd makes you feel you are growing with the band through their music. The lead singer is incredible. Her voice is soft, yet haunting which makes you hang on every lyric as the melody drifts through the room. I can't wait until these guys get to Chicago for a show!

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Anonymous

    Posted October 1, 2010

    Simply Beautiful

    This is one of the most beautiful albums I've heard in years... I heard about HEM in an interview in National Public Radio a short while ago, and ordered the album before there were sound files available online. Definitely check this out, you will be glad you did.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Anonymous

    Posted October 1, 2010

    Wonderful musicians

    This group is full of fantastic musicians. They play their hearts out and blend superbly. This band must have been made in heaven!

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  • Anonymous

    Posted October 1, 2010

    HEM ROCKS

    After hearing NPR's interview with HEM the other day I had to run out and buy the CD. Hems sound is fresh, insightful, and renewing. It's the best new band I've come across in a long time.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Anonymous

    Posted October 1, 2010

    Best Music

    This is some of the best music since Joplin and King. Relatable,Relaxing and worth listening to!

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  • Anonymous

    Posted October 1, 2010

    Great instruments and vocal

    Totally relaxing. This group really relates well with each other and the audience! Would like more from them.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Anonymous

    Posted November 9, 2008

    No text was provided for this review.

Sort by: Showing all of 8 Customer Reviews