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Design By Humans
Published On: Tue, Dec 15th, 2015

Ban Hatton: Walls

banBan Hatton
Walls
(self-released)

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Ban Hatton’s rootsy, folky Walls opens with the flick-y, acoustic “Backed by the River,” setting pretty quick and straight the songwriter’s slightly nasally delivery and alt-country approach. With David Raouf laying down the beat behind the single electric slide, from one note to another, the tune is over quickly and we are into the harmonica opening cry of “Brothers,” with it’s solid snapping of Raouf’s stick-to-rim. There’s that same, two-note sliding thing behind the verses here that are slightly more kinetic, with guitars getting over-driven a bit. “She’s Gone” is a much slower read on that high-end, acoustic sound, some doubled vocal and sad harmonica on what is basically Hatton and his acoustic pleading for a lost love. About a third of the way in, Raouf comes smashing in and there are added power chords from electric guitar for what reason I am not so sure, but it is dramatic. “Roanoke” feels pretty much classic folk to me. Again we get a quick, flicky, acoustic and Raouf manages an oddly syncopated snare snapping. As he does throughout Walls, Hatton delivers another in-your-face vocal and here especially his singing is very effective. “Coast to Coast” to “Wish I Had the Sense” ends the 10-song collection. The former is a true Steve Forbet-like plea with a staccato rhythm, where again about a third of the way in we get loud lead guitar and Raouf’s snapping throughout. The latter, “Wish I Had the Sense,” is a sweet, country-flavored, acoustic ender to the album, Hatton remarking on his place in the scheme of things in the love he has. I like the acoustic lead here very much.

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Ban Hatton: Walls