Text Box: Rebel Man (Reviewed by Mike Rimmer—Cross Rhythms April 2015)
Bryn Haworth seems to be getting even better with age!         ...Accompanying the veteran are a great many Haworth stalwarts who add to the quality of the project, including bassist Les Moir, drummers Phil Crabbe and Henry Spinetti and keyboards from Mark Edwards. And I always love it when Bryn adds a horn section into the mix, here supplied by Steve Gregory and Raul d'Olivera. 
'Rebel Man' offers a combination of Haworth originals and a few traditional songs and there's plenty to enjoy here with Haworth's trademark slide to the fore in both acoustic and electric guises. "Dancing With The Father" and "Love Me Like You Used To Do" have the horns adding some extra punchy power whilst his version of Bobby Charles' "Why Are People Like That", which has been a live favourite for a while, has a great vibe. Bryn even throws in a reggae groove with the title track (which wouldn't have sounded out of place back in his days on Island records) and features some delicious guitar licks. Another couple of highlights are a return visit to "Moments", a song first featured on 'Grand Arrival', and a gorgeous solo instrumental "Only Believe" which is reminiscent of his earliest work on 'Let The Days Go By'. Overall 'Rebel Man' is Haworth on top form.

Rebel Man
By Deltak    Bryn At His Best
Bryn Haworth is one of the most underrated musicians in the UK and this is one of the best CD's I've bought in the past 10 years.
The first track [Love Me Like You Used To Do] rocks along with a good tight horn unit backing up. Second track has a solid reggae beat and, again, a good horn section backing.
The rest of the album is a good mix of nicely reworked standard blues numbers [Why Are People Like That & That's all] and some pleasant reflective guitar playing. A Really good punchy version of Just A Closer Walk.
If you like Ry Cooder, Keb' Mo', Hans Theessink, Taj Mahal - then give Bryn a try.

Time Out  (Premier Christian Magazine June 2014)
Time Out follows Haworth’s 2010 album Inside Out as a broad set of songs designed for prisoners. While the first largely featured existing tracks, this seems to have been created as a set list for a jail gig. 
 Haworth spotlights his blues credentials, both on solo acoustic 12-string and riffing with a full electric band, but dips into gospel hues when original members of the London Community Gospel Choir add discreet backing vocals.       One of Britain’s top slide guitarists (Haworth regularly works with musicians from Eric Clapton’s backing band), he offers two instrumentals: an electric slide version of Elvis’ ‘Crying in the Chapel’ and a beautiful, meditative fingerpick-and bottleneck take on ‘When I Survey the Wondrous Cross’.      You don’t have to be incarcerated to enjoy this highly accessible set, although it is offered free of charge to prison inmates. Smoulderingly strong, it is how worship music should be: grounded in real experience, written with real words, played with impeccable musicianship and aimed at growing God’s kingdom in tangible ways.  
Time Out   Review by Lins Honeyman   for Cross Rhythms Magazine April 2015
English blues veteran Bryn Haworth is well known for his prison ministry work and this release, primarily designed for distribution amongst prisoners, highlights a work ethic that ensures that there is no drop in quality from his mainstream output. As ever, Haworth keeps things varied by chopping and changing between styles with the electric blues rock of the title track sitting comfortably next some delightful country blues in "Good Friend" whilst instrumental covers of stalwarts such as "Crying In The Chapel" and "When I Survey The Wondrous Cross" showcase the man's supreme slide guitar work. Delivered with his trademark warmly accessible vocal style, Haworth touches upon themes that will be relevant to his target audience with the likes of "All My Trials" and "Motherless Child" honing in on potential experiences of inmates in a generic sense whilst the gospel blues of "Sure Do Need Him Now" and "Walking With The Master" plus an affecting rendition of "What A Friend We Have In Jesus" all serve to offer up hope through Jesus for all who listen - incarcerated or not.

ONE WAY TICKET        Reviewed by Derek Walker for Christianity Magazine   December 2010
‘When many Christian musicians are either too proud to acknowledge their faith or lack skills in describing anything else, this collection shows how to get it right.   Gently earthed lyrics about time passing and everyday life sit among songs of fresh starts and two delicate instrumentals, including a slow-building, deftly-arranged ‘Once in Royal David’s City’.   
Throughout, his consummate skill on a variety of strings matches the talents of his band of top-rate sessions players.....
Haworth knows his strengths—riffs, blues intricate instrumentals, and adroit slide work.   He plays to them.’

and from the review for Phantom Tollbooth 
Five years is a long wait for a Bryn Haworth album. ….but in this case, the longer you wait, the better the product at the end.     There is plenty to excite the music-lover before even pressing the play button.  . ......The acoustic blues roots workout “Nobody’s Fault but Mine” is always going to appeal to the same bunch, so strengthening this album’s appeal.     Whatever Haworth does has a sensitive touch, whether his soft-edged vocals or the delicate touches of mandolin and slide. Ever since his early live staple “Anywhere You Want to Be”, his instrumental tracks have been ones to watch out for. There are two here: “Up on the Downs”, a gentle acoustic shuffle with slide-led lead lines and an instantly ‘gettable’ melody; and a complete re-working of “Once in Royal David’s City.” It comes from such an ambient place that it takes a good 90 seconds to start to recognise the melody.   …..           Combining the bluesiness of Glenn Kaiser, the strings finesse of Phil Keaggy and the accessible faith of both, this re-invents blues to his own style. If you play this for long, it might get you running out to get a bottleneck for your air guitar.

Cross Rhythms April 2006 - review by Anthony Longville - 9/10
One of the UK’s musical treasures is Bryn Haworth. This CD is all about the blues with a touch of rock and roll. Trademark Bryn Haworth. A return to recording and to these ears a real return to form.  On the opening title track I defy your feet not to tap as Bryn motors along, singing apparently about his love for listening to the radio in the 50’s but with a subliminal message about listening to God. “I’m in Love With You” is a great piece of blues music, showing that Bryn is quite happy to sing songs about his wife as well as the “spiritual” songs. Great blues guitar work. “Wash Me Clean”, a Maggi Dawn song, moves gently along before providing a beautiful showcase for Bryn’s excellence on the slide guitar—so much his forte. “Psalm 40” get the blues treatment. And there’s beautiful worship too on “Wings Of The Wind”. At first I think “Satisfied” is another love song—well it is—but it’s about Jesus’ love for the church. Each track is a gem in its own way.  Bryn is one of those people often described as a musician’s musician. The playing, backed by his usual band, is impeccable. Haworth proves again that the blues doesn’t have to be sad. Play it loud!
Music Week Magazine‘s reviewer wrote..‘this new album, with touches of folk and blues amid the tuneful rock – really deserves consideration. Lyrics carry a strong Christian message, but there’s nothing Sally Army about the music‘. Bryn deserves even wider recognition as probably the finest bottleneck guitarist this country has ever produced. Hopefully this superb album will give it to him.
Cross Rhythms June 1995 - review by Tony Cummings - 10/10
There can be few CCM artists, British or American, who could have three albums reissued ('The Gap' from 1980, 'Pass It On' and 'Wings Of The Morning' from 1983) and have them popping up as bright and immediate as his new stuff. For Bryn's music, locked as it is into an urban blues groove, is utterly timeless. In case you weren't around when Rob Andrews' pioneering Chapel Lane company released these masterpieces, 'The Gap' was the album which set the agenda for all that was to follow, a sassy, romping, stomping set full of searing guitar, lazily understated vocals and simple lyrics full of wit and charm exhorting us to get to God. Eric Clapton's old rhythm section give just the right drive.

Renewal Magazine March 1996
Slide Don’t Fret by Bryn Haworth is the best Christian contemporary CD I’ve heard in a long while. If you hadn’t guessed, slide guitar is the order of the day, and Bryn’s playing is second-to-none. In fact all the musicians are brilliant.  The simplicity and relaxed atmosphere of the album is testimony to the skills of all involved in the performance and production. They make it sound so easy.

New Christian Herald February 1996
What a delight superbly played blues and slide guitar is. And the delight is multiplied when the music comes from the excellent Bryn Haworth, wrapped in songs of strength and encouragement. The Christian music scene rarely appreciates the craftsmanship of this man’s playing, and to these ears his expressiveness speaks as eloquently of his love for the Creator as his lyrics. Slide Don’t Fret mixes tempo and style, from the mean and moody “Judgement Blues” to the dance-friendly “Cajun Song”, but it’s really a treat from start to finish.  

Cross Rhythms December 1995 - reviewed by Tony Cummings - 10/10
Who'd have thought you could write your Christian testimony in song beginning with the words “Left my home in Lancashire” and put it to a rollicking cajun groove that reeks with the flavour of chicken gumbo rather than Lancashire hotpot? But this then is Bryn Haworth, veteran bluesman of this parish who with this delicious set turns in possibly his finest album yet. Catch “Judgment Blues”, an eight minute plus while searing guitar soars over a languid sax cushion, as spine tinglingly moving as anything T-Bone Walker ever concocted, or the romping, tongue-in-cheek opener where the likes of Blind Willie Johnson and Fred McDowell are name checked alongside Ry Cooder and Lowell George. Concentrating on Bryn’s slide talents was an inspired concept while that rock solid band have such an infectious, laid back swing that only the most devoted technohead won’t be drawn into this timeless celebration of good tunes and old truths.

Bryn Haworth Music Reviews




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