Tiny Ruins & Hamish Kilgour – Hurtling Through (Flying Nun)

Tiny Ruins & Hamish KilgourNot quite the follow-up to Tiny Ruins’ exquisite Brightly Painted OneHurtling Through is a 7-track EP recorded in New York City with The Clean’s Hamish Kilgour. Hollie Fullbrook provides the voice and the songs, while Kilgour sprinkles everything with percussive fairy dust.

These seven tracks were recorded over two sessions in Brooklyn, the first in October 2013, the second, a year later. Hollie Fullbrook has left bandmates Cass Basil (bass) and Alexander Frear (drums) back in New Zealand and teamed up with ex-pat Hamish Kilgour. The duo performed a few shows together in and around New York and then decided to record a couple of songs. The first of those two efforts opens this EP. Tread Softly takes it’s lyrics from a W.B. Yeats poem, but its pure Tiny Ruins. Hollie’s voice is recorded up close and natural, accompanied by her gently strummed guitar and Hamish’s inventive percussion. His use of the tambourine is especially subtle and effective here.

The vibe was so good for that first session that they returned to producer Gary Olson’s basement studio in 2014 for more recording. Three of those four songs feature additional musicians. Sax player Gary Vegas turns in a beautiful solo during Turn Around…the only track where Kilgour’s percussion threatens to overwhelm the song…and Danny Tunick adds upright bass to Turn Around, Song Of The Wandering Aengus and King’s County. Fortunately the added company never spoils the intimate mood Hollie and Hamish have established between them.

That mood is especially apparent on Public Menace, basically a field recording of the two strolling through Brooklyn on an autumn evening, with Kilgour playing his harmonica and banging away on anything the strikes his fancy with Hollie laughs and talks.

Hollie’s songs are pretty much what you would expect after hearing her two albums…contemplative, introspective, warm and emotive. Her guitar playing impressive as is her cello work on King’s County and the title track.

The EP finishes with King’s County, a wistful tune about “wishing the clouds apart” and returning home, ending with birdsong.

Home may be where the heart is, but this little excursion to New York has proved to be a fruitful one. Here’s to more road trips for Hollie and more inspired collaborations.

Marty Duda

Click here to listen to King’s County from Hurtling Through: