Is ‘Hymn for Her’ or for him?

U-News Staff

Band is a hit despite odd name

Have you ever been sitting in a rundown boxcar of the train you just hopped, drinking a yard beer, and realizing that this pinnacle moment in your adulthood would be 75 percent better if you only had some tunes to groove on?

Well then, I’m sorry to inform you that the album I listened to by the band Hymn For Her (also known as H4H), entitled “Lucy & Wayne and The Amairican Stream” (not a typo, the album was recorded in an Airstream trailer), would be excellent background music for that defining moment in your life.

To clarify, it wasn’t a physical album by the band through which I had just taken an aural trailer park ride, but rather an impersonal, electronic download of the group’s latest effort.

Let this be a lesson to all of you budding musicians who aspire to be reviewed in print: it would be advantageous on your part to share your melodious gifts with prospective reviewers in strictly physical form.

The initial bad taste left in my mouth by the download-only format of my review was quickly erased off the palate by the proverbial jumbo pencil that is the album’s first track “Slips.” Having exactly nothing to do with the antiquated form of female undergarment, “Slips” comes roaring out of the speakers like a country-punk battle cry, setting the tone for H4H’s ensuing sonic campaign.

Hymn For Her is a self-described “stomp-grass punk folk” act, comprised of the androgynous and somewhat oddly named multi-instrumentalists Lucy Tight (3-string guitar, banjo, vocals) and Wayne Waxing (vocals, guitar, banjo, dobro, harmonica, and percussion). “Lucy & Wayne and the Amairican Stream” was mixed by Jim Diamond, who is credited for working with the White Stripes. This collaboration between H4H and Diamond gives the album a slickly produced sound, and is fitting – as one could mistake Tight and Waxing for Jack & Megs’ backwoods, more acoustically-inclined distant cousins.

H4H brings a brash, D.I.Y. country punk ethos to the current musical landscape that not many similar bands are able to convincingly pull off. Tight plays a mean slide guitar, and Waxing is proficient at the blowin’ harp (that’s “playing the harmonica” in bluesy speak).

The two have certainly cornered the market on a style of music that, if given the opportunity, would wear out the floorboards on any down-home front porch, and see to it that the family moonshine jars were dry as summer dirt by the end of the night.

You can catch the duo performing live on Sunday, Sept. 25 at the Vulcan’s Forge, 3936 Broadway in Midtown. If you don’t dig this act, you can at least peruse a vast array of gemstones and new age paraphernalia.

Standout tracks on the album are the aforementioned country-honker “Slips,” the hauntingly deserted, love anthem “Not,” (which could be straight out of a lost David Lynch film), and the lyrically asinine – but raw, and grittily rockin’ – “Thursday.”

[email protected]