Band – H.C. Slim
Album – Sings
Country of Origin – Finland
Genre – Folk
Release Date – May 24, 2019
Label – Svart Records
Author – Schultzie
Roam through any thick expanse of trees and you may just find H.C. Slim surrounded by littered pine needles and damp discarded branches, leaning back against a stump strumming a somber tune for the birds. He plucks his strings in a way that rings similar to skipping stones – a simple plunk followed by ever-growing circles that stretch out wide, rippling further and further until they fade and flatline back to where they came. His voice sounds as if it may have been set alight by one too many cigarettes, and his words reek of a smoky darkness that seem as if they have traveled up through lungs of blackened tar. After all, in his own words, “all things must burn.”
H.C. Slim’s music has recently been picked up by Svart Records. His album Sings is twelve swaying declarations of dull aching and gentle pity. A calming warmth comes through the strings and washes over in the opening tune “Boat By The Sea.” The gentle picking emulates the light tossing of waves on a rocky shore that then retreat to reveal the residual dampness. Up from this shoreline lies an abandoned fairground. Toward the center sits a carousel so decrepit that when the wind blows it creaks out its old tune, “The City Is Burning.” A few ghostly notes in the wind at first, and then a light, twinkly song floats along like the rise and fall of the once lively carousel horses. The music found on Sings are tender, human. Moving along without haste, they’ll surely warm you up like an embrace and linger there long after the arms have gone away.
With the rawness of Bruce Springsteen’s Nebraska and a lilt akin to Dylan’s, H.C. Slim is the dusty crossroad where music lovers from all over can stop to take a rest and just peacefully listen to the short simplicities of a man roaming alone. I truly believe Svart Records has something to offer for anyone. With quite an extensive list of artists to choose from, ranging from doom metal to folk, you will stumble across a favorite in due time.
Recommendation: Heavy as folk! Sings is smooth with a slight edge of scratch and tinged with a glowing warmth like a crumpled up love letter set alight and then regretfully stamped out. If you find appreciation in H.C. Slim’s music, I invite you to check out Svart Records and all they have to offer!