Monday, 3 December 2012

Hymn For Holy Year - Kim and Leanne (1974)

This is a lovely religious/psychedelic pop tune attributed to two singers known only as “Kim and Leanne”. Did they go on to achieve musical success? Did they go on to achieve ecclesiastical success? This, like the holy trinity, is a mystery that will probably never really be known by mankind. The label says that the track was written by Julie Atton and produced by Peter Martin - an online record shop I found says that this is “jazz heavyweight” Peter Martin (and such a man does exist) but I’m unsure as to how they would have distinguished between that Peter Martin and some random Peter Martin from the congregation of Kim and Leanne’s church. 

The single was released by Sydney’s 2SM radio station which was enormously popular in the seventies and eighties and pretty much molded the Top 40 radio format as we know it in Australia. However, despite their populist appeal, until 1992 2SM was in fact owned by the Catholic Broadcasting Company which in turn was controlled by the Catholic Archdiocese of Sydney. (The ‘SM’ apparently refers to Sydney’s St. Mark’s Church) I won’t go into it in depth here, but yes, running a popular radio station that was controlled by the Catholic Church did have it’s challenges; various songs couldn’t be played, such as obvious examples like Skyhooks’ sleazy seventies stuff but also songs like The Ballad Of John and Yoko due to its conspicuous use of the word ‘Christ’. (All information on 2SM stolen from the excellent Australian vintage pop site, Milesago.)

Anyway, the song itself is great, Kim and Leanne are sweet, unpretentious singers, the phrasing of the melody kind of reminds me of Radiohead’s Optimistic and you literally won’t believe their use of primitive synths. The lyrics are rubbish and are in reference to the Catholic holy or jubilee year of 1974 - now this weird: the B-side features Father John Murphy talking about the Holy Year of 1974, but all the media I can find on the web says that the year in question was in fact 1975. Another Biblical mystery, on par with the resurrection, no doubt. So, enjoy this unique gem and give thanks to reader Rex who sent me this single. Amen.

Label: 2SM
Released: 1974
Players: Kim and Leanne - vocals
Peter Martin - production
No other musicians credited.


  1. A-side is phenomenal stuff, I adore it

  2. I wonder what Kim and Leannes school mates thought when they played the record to them; were they impressed, or a little freaked out... My theory about Peter Martin is that he is the same guy responsible for producing, playing on and writing the excellent Drouyn surf soundtrack from 1974. On that album theres a bit of synth plodding, reminicent of this song.

  3. Cool! Maybe it is the same guy. It's really hard to tell with some of these guys who have fairly common names.

    I'm sure Kim and Leannes' mates thought they were pretty cool - they had recorded a single, that's pretty impressive. I don't reckon the overly Jesus-y lyrical content would have raised too many eyebrows in 1974.