STYLE: Celtic RATING OUR PRODUCT CODE: 18218-11343 LABEL: ICC ICC0931D FORMAT: CD Album ITEMS: 1 RRP: £12.99
Reviewed by Lins Honeyman
A sequel to previous volumes 'Heartcry' and 'Homecoming', this release is a delightful collection of Celtic-styled songs from this husband and wife team from the monastic-inspired Northumbria Community. Firmly footed in the Irish traditional style, 'Haven' thankfully dodges the clichés and well worn paths that many Christian Celtic collections are prone to follow and is therefore a pleasingly refreshing listen. The opener "Masterpiece" sets the scene for both the album's musical and spiritual content and points to the fact that our God is beyond description and, whilst her voice could at times be stronger, Anita's lead vocals on this and other songs are well suited to the reflective mood of the album. Whilst the style is mostly contemplative, the Haighs have wisely thrown in a couple of pacier numbers in the likes of "Show Me Your Ways" and "I Bind Myself To You" - the latter inspired by the St Patrick's breastplate prayer and therefore cementing the Irish connection. A couple of tracks are dedicated to the couple's long awaited daughter - a sprightly instrumental called "Erin's Favourite", featuring some lovely mandola from multi-instrumentalist Nick Haigh, and the beautiful song of thanksgiving "Erin Mo Chroi (Erin My Heart)". The vast majority of the songs on show here are self-penned and stand up on their own merit but the album is enhanced by a version of Henry Francis Lyte's hymn "Praise, My Soul, The King Of Heaven" set to a beautiful new melody by the Haighs. All in all, 'Haven' is a well-crafted and enjoyable piece of work and is a good example of what happens when Celtic music is treated with the care and respect it deserves.
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
Interested in reviewing music? Find out