Brian Houston - Thirteen Days In August

Wednesday 1st September 2004
Brian Houston - Thirteen Days In August
Brian Houston - Thirteen Days In August

STYLE: Roots/Acoustic
RATING 8 8 8 8 8 8 8 8
OUR PRODUCT CODE: 10251-9695
LABEL: Brian Houston 823566024729
FORMAT: CD Album
RRP: £9.99

Reviewed by Tony Cummings

Brian's notes in the CD booklet reveal the anatomy of an album: "This record was made in Belfast, Nashville and Eastbourne. It started life as a collection of demos before moving to Nashville in October 2003, where the plan was to create master tracks from scratch. However, the producer there (Phil Madeira) thought it would be a shame to lose the spirit of the original recordings so decided to add his parts and those of his musician friends to what was already produced. So, after a few months, the songs were sent to England where another producer (Paul Wilkinson) was waiting to begin work on mixing. Soon the files were opened and decoded and their contents spilled onto the desktop of his Apple Mac G4. Proceeding cautiously, Paul carefully massaged and cajoled the disparate elements to take it to the next stage (in other words, he added some banjo and drums). Then I stuck my vocals and guitars over the parts that needed fixing and messed about for a while until I was happy to hand it all back to Paul for final mixing." The happy result is compelling, rootsy, Dylanesque music, full of guts and passion. Maybe there are one or two too many songs about losing your girl ("Wrong Wrong Wrong" makes most maudlin country weepers sound like a barrel of laughs by comparison) but Brian's winning ways with memorable images ("There's a beer bottle and it's lyin' empty/And it marks the place you sat") and telling ways with narrative songs, like on the haunting "The Time We Lost The Car", not to mention his engaging, gutsy, passionate vocals and delightful suck-and-blow harmonica, lap steel, Hammond organ, et al.

The opinions expressed in this article are not necessarily those held by Cross Rhythms. Any expressed views were accurate at the time of publishing but may or may not reflect the views of the individuals concerned at a later date.

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Product Description
Brian Houston is one of Ireland’s best known performers in both Christian and mainstream circles. This release showcases Brian’s songwriting talents in his Americana influenced style. Organic and ‘rootsy’ songs of everyday life written by a songsmith who believes in living a practical and real Christian faith, a walk that takes the dusty track as well as a Heavenly one. Recorded in Belfast, Nashville and Eastbourne this is a well crafted and cared for artist driven album.

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