Slim Dime | Hold Fast

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Folk: Alternative Folk Country: Country Folk Moods: Type: Acoustic
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Hold Fast

by Slim Dime

A journey for the soul by candlelight - a collection of original and traditional songs, intimate, gentle, and at times uplifting and rousing - this is music for the literate Hillbilly.
Genre: Folk: Alternative Folk
Release Date: 

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  Song Share Time Download
1. Candyman
1:51 $0.99
2. The Coalminers Blues
3:08 $0.99
3. Pretty Saro
2:33 $0.99
4. Muckrake
1:34 $0.99
5. The City Song
2:40 $0.99
6. Adeline
4:51 $0.99
7. The Great Divide
2:43 $0.99
8. Pretty Polly
3:09 $0.99
9. The Waggoners Lad
3:12 $0.99
10. Old Banjo Song
2:03 $0.99
11. Your Lone Journey
3:08 $0.99
Downloads are available as MP3-320 files.


Album Notes
Based in Melbourne, Australia - acoustic duo - Slim Dime are Jen Land & Chris Taylor: vocals, guitar, banjo & tenor guitar. Their music references the simplicity and space of old time mountain music yet talks directly about contemporary experience. The sound of Slim Dime is both rich and sparse. Silence is their third band member.

Recorded at Incubator Studios by candle light Hold Fast is a collection of original and traditional songs that take the listener on a journey of the soul. Intimate, gentle and at times uplifting and rousing, their music is deceptively simple and surprisingly complex.

Jen Land & Chris Taylor have been playing together for the last 10 years making country tinged music in as bands such as The Original Smith Family and The Bitter Sweets, playing around Melbourne, Victoria and Tasmania. They presently play in Slim Dime and the Prairie Kings - a Western Swing Boogie Woogie 6 Piece band and Slim Dime - an acoustic duo.

Hold Fast - the songs

Candyman - there are quite a few blues and country songs about “The Candyman”, this Slim Dime original wonders what the woman who loves her Candyman might be like ……

The Coalminers Blues - this Original Carter Family Song is a Slim Dime favourite, we refer to it as the day-job song
Pretty Saro - a gorgeous traditional song that follows the journey of an immigrant and their search for love and a sense of home

Muckrake - a Slim Dime original with words by Liz Williams, a poetic journey through the experience of anger and conflict to eventual release and peace

The City Song - A Slim original that describes the experience of feeling alone in the city, written by Jen Land in Brisbane - nothing like feelin' lonely in your home town….

Adeline - a very sad tale about a girl who gets lost in the snow while her lover searches for her, a Slim Dime original with words by Liz Williams, this is one of our all time favourite songs and we will admit to being moved to tears on a few occasions thinking about poor Ollie and Adeline.

The Great Divide - a little song that explores the perceived distance between people and asks us to see that the Great Divide is an imagined space and can be easily crossed with mutual understanding and the recognition that we are all the same, a Slim Dime original.

Pretty Polly - a traditional murder ballad about a girl lured to her death, not about a talking bird……….

The Waggoners Lad - a lovely traditional song sung from the perspective of a Lass who has been courted by The Waggoners Lad…… with unusually feminist lyrics

Old Banjo Song - a Slim Dime original, many songs are written from the perspective of the person left by another in a relationship, this song explores the idea of a woman who has left her Husband and child, a live favourite as it really thumps along…

Your Lone Journey - this beautiful song was written by the inimitable Doc Watson, and his wife. It is a lovely song about a lifetime relationship that has reached it’s end due to the death of one of the people. Absolutely heart breaking

“We want to take the listener on a journey of the heart, mind and spirit, the music we love and write talks about the experience of being human. One of the things we love about traditional songs is that the essential truths about being a human are always shared by us all, fashions may change but really, we are all the same.”

Wednesday, 4 September 2013
Review: Slim Dime – Hold Fast

Slim Dime – Hold Fast (Independent)

Slim Dime - Jen Land and Chris Taylor – are an acoustic, country flecked, alt. folk duo based in Melbourne, Australia who’ve been together for a decade or so - playing in various groups and configurations. The pair sing together, play guitars and banjo, and it’s that basic set-up that they’ve taken into the studio for their new record “Hold Fast”. On paper, it appears a trifle simplistic, but the arrangements and performances are utterly engaging and, because of the nature of the material, altogether timeless. The mix of old songs and original material comes together as a seamless whole and Land sings with a voice that seems steeped in 70 years of backporch, mountain songcraft.

Recorded by candlelight (which sounds like a health and safety nightmare), the combination of atmosphere, presentation and themes makes “Hold Fast” a pleasure from beginning to end; and very much an album experience rather than a collection of songs. They begin with “Candyman”, a common enough character throughout the Americana tradition, and here Land sings from the female perspective, exploring the personality of the woman who loves the Candyman. Their take on the Carter Family’s “The Coalminers Blues” moves at pace under banjo propulsion, and the haunting “Adeline” tells a tale of death in the snow, and its evocative “Oh lord I fear my gal’s lost in the snow” refrain lingers long after the song has faded.

Leicester Bangs

Jolene: The Country Music Blog
Monday, January 6, 2014
Review: Slim Dime
Over the past handful of years, it has become obvious that Australian country music and its subgenres are home to independently recorded and released music that is of very high quality. The writing, producing, recording, singing and playing are all of such a standard that it should perhaps make 'traditional' record companies nervous - what happens if country musicians all decide to go independent?
Too many weeks ago - and I say 'too many' because I've been remiss in not reviewing these albums earlier - I was sent Hillbillly Salad by Slim Dime and the Prairie Kings, and Hold Fast by Slim Dime. Slim Dime are a Melbourne duo, with Jen Land and Chris Taylor on vocals and all sorts of guitars.
Hillbilly Salad is well named, its eight tracks (does that make it a long EP or a short LP?) embodying the spirit and style of honky tonk. Land's voice has a wonderful tone and it sits comfortably and cleanly above the music.
Hold Fast is a more melodic production - Land has lead vocals throughout (whereas they are shared on Hillbilly Salad), and the songs, and the singing, are sweeter. Some of the tracks are traditional, some covers and some originals. The traditional songs may have determined the direction of the album, towards ballads, so this is a slower, more melancholic affair than Hillbilly Salad.
Both of these recordings were independently made, and they exemplify the best of their kind. They also offer a simplicity of production that honours the songs - the tracks are not overlaid with more instruments than they need in order to make the sound 'bigger' for radio, which is obviously a concern for record companies. Thus we see why independent recordings suit country music so well: in a genre where songwriting is held in such high esteem, the most outstanding recordings are those that recognise that. Slim Dime treat songs with utmost respect, and the listener is the beneficiary. Plus, I could listen to Jen Land's voice for days.

Posted by Sophie Hamley at 12:20 PM



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