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For folk artists, the norm is for a mainly acoustic debut to be followed by a bigger, more band-oriented sophomore set. But for Holly Arrowsmith it’s been the other way around.
Her 2016 debut For The Weary Traveller may have won the best folk Tui but the arrangements and playing at times nudged it more towards the poppier end of the singer-songwriter spectrum. A Dawn I Remember, on the other hand, is a richer, more pastoral affair, with most of tracks built around lovely, unadorned acoustic melodies, filled out with atmospheric splashes of steel and electric guitar. As well as bringing out a pleasingly jazzier edge to Arrowsmith’s singing, the bucolic tones provide the perfect backdrop to her wistful paeans to the joys of nature, love and simple living. A number of the songs on the album deal with losing a sense of place, but on A Dawn I Remember, Arrowsmith feels very much at home.
A Dawn I Remember