When the word charity appears on a press release my expectations of the music on offer is always low. Hills Of Home is proof that sometimes you need to put your preconceptions aside. This ep was inspired by the death of Harbourne's friend Lance Bombardier Matthew Hatton who was killed at the age of 23 while serving in Afghanistan and is being released as a tribute to his friend with all profits from the sale of the ep going to Help For Heroes.
The title track is a folk song at heart but it is infused with lush pop melodies and heartfelt lyrics that are touching without being sycophantic. Request doesn't quite have the instant appeal of the opener but track 3, Actress, most certainly does. Its off kilter guitar and Jacques Brel inspired vocals make it a weirdly wonderful song.
The ep closes with the upbeat Sand, backed with a bossanova beat and jangling guitars that is completely different from the other 3 tracks. Harbourne's background is in musical theatre but thankfully this ep shows no hint of that. This ep shows Harbourne to be a fine songwriter and I'm sure that his friend would approve, both of the heartfelt music and the charity that will benefit from its.