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Hold Time

M. Ward, She & HimAudio CD
4.2 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (29 customer reviews)

Price: $14.88 & FREE Shipping on orders over $35. Details
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MP3 Music, 14 Songs, 2009 $9.49  
Audio CD, 2009 $14.88  
Vinyl, 2009 $20.95  

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Songs from this album are available to purchase as MP3s. Click on "Buy MP3" or view the MP3 Album.

Song Title Time Price
listen  1. For Beginners 2:47$0.99  Buy MP3 
listen  2. Never Had Nobody Like You (Featuring Zooey Deschanel) 2:26$0.99  Buy MP3 
listen  3. Jailbird 2:31$0.99  Buy MP3 
listen  4. Hold Time 3:05$0.99  Buy MP3 
listen  5. Rave On (Featuring Zooey Deschanel) 3:35$0.99  Buy MP3 
listen  6. To Save Me (Featuring Jason Lytle) 3:01$0.99  Buy MP3 
listen  7. One Hundred Million Years 2:11$0.99  Buy MP3 
listen  8. Stars of Leo 3:18$0.99  Buy MP3 
listen  9. Fisher of Men 3:12$0.99  Buy MP3 
listen10. Oh Lonesome Me (Featuring Lucinda Williams) 6:05$0.99  Buy MP3 
listen11. Epistemology 3:49$0.99  Buy MP3 
listen12. Blake's View 2:29$0.99  Buy MP3 
listen13. Shangri-La 2:20$0.99  Buy MP3 
listen14. Outro (AKA: I'm a Fool to Want You) 3:47$0.99  Buy MP3 

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Product Details

  • Audio CD (February 17, 2009)
  • Original Release Date: 2009
  • Number of Discs: 1
  • Label: Merge Records
  • ASIN: B001NJY53K
  • Average Customer Review: 4.2 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (29 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #59,731 in Music (See Top 100 in Music)

Editorial Reviews

Although he's been compared to everyone from John Fahey to Tom Waits to Howe Gelb, with "Hold Time", it's clear that M. Ward, with his brilliant guitar playing and innate sense of melody, is one of those rare and special talents who defy comparison and compartmentalization. His deft guitar picking, bar room piano, and voice like drizzled honey make him a huge favorite of music critics and the focus of public praise from such disparate talents as Norah Jones and Oasis' Noel Gallagher.

Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews
46 of 50 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars M. Ward - Hold Time 10/10 February 17, 2009
Format:Audio CD
In a world of Pro Tools and Logic, any wannabe guitarist can pick up the nearest acoustic and strum out a few half-hearted tunes about the allure of the road and their lost love, but few have been able to do it as consistently and as accurately as Portland, Ore.-based wunderkind M. Ward. With a healthy appreciation for his musical roots and a talent for speedy finger picking that calls to mind the greats of his favorite genre, Ward has proven time and again that folk-pop is in no danger of dying out, no more so than on his seventh effort, the superb Hold Time.

Ward's diverse oeuvre is even more striking when you look at the clearly discernable sense of progress he has made over the years, from the lo-fi acoustic wizardry of his debut to his more recent orchestral tapestries. Fresh off his work with actress Zooey Deschanel in the duo She & Him, Hold Time is the logical progression in his work, sounding like a more male-dominated version of She & Him's ode to the soul of the `60s, Volume One. Opener "For Beginners" is a concise bridge into his new work, a deceptively quick guitar melody underlying Ward's roughened vocals. The mellow production and Ward's campfire playing create a song with a sort of timeless quality to it, one that would sound just as home in an old-time western saloon as it does on an iPod's headphones.

The following trio of songs that open the record play like a best-of collection of some unsung folk hero, with the bluesy thump of "Never Had Nobody Like You" and the hypnotic jangle-pop of "Jailbird" leading into the more reflective, sedate title track.
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12 of 13 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Post-Ward February 26, 2009
Format:MP3 Music
M. Ward's sixth album finds him with an increased public profile (having toured with Norah Jones) which of course brings more expectation from fans and critics. But the fact is that Ward hasn't changed his approach a whole lot over the years.

There is a brighter sound on this record that is no doubt a result of his experience and confidence as a producer, both of his own and others' works. The arrangements are more varied and ornate, but he's savvy enough to know that all the sonic bells-and-whistles are no substitute for a good song. The "She & Him" project was obviously a lot of fun, and some of that sense of fun pervades more upbeat songs like "Never Had Nobody Like You." And of course, there's lots of great guitar work, from lovely, intimate solo acoustic moments, to the fretwork fireworks on "To Save Me."

But above all, there are still a handful of truly great songs, which seem to come from the mists of time, bridging Tin Pan Alley, backporch Americana, and shambling indie rock, where the ghosts of Mississippi John Hurt and John Fahey mingle with contemporary influences and collaborators Vic Chesnutt, Lucinda Williams and Howe Gelb. And there are some that are just merely good, that sound similar to too many other past M. Ward songs, but familiarity, in this case, breeds comfort rather than contempt.

And of course, he is still has a brilliant ear for interpreting the work of others; the airy, delicious cover of Buddy Holly's "Rave On" is, for this listener, the absolute highlight of the record, just as his revelatory cover of David Bowie's "Let's Dance" first demonstrated how effortlessly he can take someone else's song and make it his own.
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Already on the short list for Best of 2009 March 20, 2009
Format:MP3 Music
This is my first introduction to M. Ward. Reading the reviews and listening to samples of other albums, I can see how some might think this is just more of the same - but for me, it's new and fresh and brilliant. By the third time through Hold Time (and it really lends itself to listening all the way through, especially with headphones) I was sold - atmospheric, warm, catchy, intelligent, just a GREAT sound. It's very 'now' yet also timeless, hard to place in any particular era, which makes me think I'll be enjoying this 5, 10, 15 years from now as well.

And for just five bucks (limited offer from Amazon)? No brainer - get it.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
By loujack
Format:Audio CD|Verified Purchase
This is stop Number Seven on the Ward Highway (if you count "To Go Home") and delivery Number Ten if you count the Monsters of Folk and his two great albums with Zooey. I had the opportunity to hear Matt roll Hold Time out in a concert in Eugene, Oregon and my goodness, what a treat. Gathered around the stage, everyone just got sucked into his soulful vortex as one amazing song after another issued forth. I have long suspected that he was a philosophy major in college (San Luis Cal Poly?) and when he started in on "Epistemology" my wonder turned into near certainty (philosophy majors are never ever completely certain of anything except musical genius when they hear and see it). Who would even know to title a song EPISTEMOLOGY except a philosophy major and who could play an intro guitar riff like the one that begins and ends his lecture on epistemology except a musical genius who continues to evolve and develop as the years and albums go by. So what is this amazing man's theory of knowledge? Ha, I thought you'd never ask: putting one foot in front of the other, doing his very best, and the rest is anyone's guess. Clearly he studied the Zen masters at school and as his musical muse continues to pour forth he just gets deeper and deeper and deeper into a musical journey that promises to find him at the top of the mountain in the end. We also caught him in Portland with the Monsters of Folk where he opened the show with Lotta Losing, jamming in the spotlight on the piano. It was an amazing moment in time. Connor took the mike and thanked Portland for this incredible man, this incredible genius, M Ward and then Matt settled in with 2,000 of his best friends for an unforgetable evening. They played for three hours and it felt like twenty minutes. Read more ›
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Most Recent Customer Reviews
5.0 out of 5 stars Brilliant, different
Discovered M.Ward several years ago. As an old folk music fan, not my normal fare, but found the uniqueness of his songwriting and playing, the amazing rhythm of his band, the... Read more
Published on February 20, 2012 by Big John
5.0 out of 5 stars Hold Time
A unique, genre-less tapestry. Plenty of catchy hooks, interesting chord changes, some non-cliche' rockabilly and substantial emotion. Read more
Published on October 16, 2011 by Moodman
5.0 out of 5 stars love his music
I love his music. I am a true fan and listen to his music a lot. I hate all other bands he is part of, such as she and him, but I love the music he makes by himself. Read more
Published on May 6, 2011 by Manuela A. Pop
5.0 out of 5 stars Great album when feeling mellow
I've been listening to the album for about a year now and keep coming back to it. Solid songwriting, nice vocals, simple arrangements, enough interest to keep me engaged. Read more
Published on June 25, 2010 by M. Newman
5.0 out of 5 stars Hold Time Salvation
With his distinctively sensual, echoey sound, M. Ward has crafted a Christian album that works. From an introduction to faith in "For Beginners" to the Johnny Cash/Jesus homage... Read more
Published on February 14, 2010 by Luann Yetter
5.0 out of 5 stars Perhaps the most underrated album of 2009
I'll admit: I wasn't planning on liking this album when I checked it out from the library. I've heard some not-too-good things about this album. Read more
Published on December 11, 2009 by D. Taylor
3.0 out of 5 stars Ok followup
M. Ward is a man trapped in time, stuck in the Oughts but enamored of the music from long ago. Strikingly spare, most M. Read more
Published on July 9, 2009 by Greg Kinne
4.0 out of 5 stars next stop shangri-la
M. Ward's latest release, Hold Time, continues his trend of revisiting and perhaps reinventing the good-old-time sound of none other than the good-old-times. Read more
Published on June 2, 2009 by gonzobrarian
2.0 out of 5 stars So-So
M. Ward received a lot of hype due to his previous album. That album was better, not only because of the wonderful-if-overplayed Poison Cup. Read more
Published on May 22, 2009 by Stephen M. Vakil
2.0 out of 5 stars needs more emotion
I'm a fan or M. Ward and wanted to like this cd, but for's missing the emotion factor. Not enough catchy songs like Poison Cup and To Go Home.
Published on May 19, 2009 by M. C. Marsh
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