Nick & Anita Haigh - Celtic Roots & Rhythms 3: Haven

Published Monday 10th July 2006
Nick & Anita Haigh - Celtic Roots & Rhythms 3: Haven
Nick & Anita Haigh - Celtic Roots & Rhythms 3: Haven

STYLE: Celtic
RATING 8 8 8 8 8 8 8 8
OUR PRODUCT CODE: 18218-11343
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 clich├ęs 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.

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