STYLE: Roots/Acoustic RATING OUR PRODUCT CODE: 120926-18822 LABEL: Independent FORMAT: Digital Only Album
Reviewed by Lins Honeyman
Another digital only reissue of the songsmith's back catalogue, this time homing in on the 1989 album. Whilst recording and songwriting techniques have certainly moved on from the time of its release, this rough and ready collection of justice-fuelled songs survives sounding undeniably dated largely thanks to the fact that many of the hardships Hewitt sang about back then are still unfortunately as prevalent today more than two decades later. For instance, "Strange Weapons" references continuing issues such as the persecution of Christians whilst "The Sky That Would Not Weep" points out that the world has largely chosen to turn a blind eye to African famine. Elsewhere, songs like "Where Is The Land Of Palestine" talk for themselves and the moving "Thirty-Two Years" speaks of the feeling of worthlessness following redundancy in a way that could have easily have been written for current times. Although this is certainly not a refined piece of work, Hewitt is careful not to let the music suffer at the hands of the message and crosses a number of stylistic boundaries with "When Johnny Cash Sang 'Man In Black'" landing in obvious country territory whilst the preachy nature of "Amusing Ourselves To Death" gets cunningly disguised as a superficially jaunty slice of cod rock 'n' roll to keep things fresh. Whilst this release may not totally stand the test of time, it is a great example of what Hewitt does best whilst being an ideal starting place for anyone interested in getting into the man's work.
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