Woodland Echoes GLADSOME HAWK. CD/DL/LP
Former Haircut 100 leader is still enjoying a fantastic day. For his first straight pop album in nearly two decades, everything is reassuringly businessas-usual for Nick Heyward, one of the most tuneful ’80s pop heroes. Woodland Echoes is an unhurried album full of paeans to passion and nature. Like his best solo work, his unmistakable Englishness is presented through an Americana filter. Love Is The Key By The Sea scene sets, while even the hillbilly hoedown of Mountaintop reveals its charms; the luscious, acoustic Beautiful Morning revels in the joy of the moment. Best still is The Stars: Heyward is not the first writer to compare the universe’s wonder with the rapture of love, but it’s done with great charm, and, in old money, would have been a Top 10 single. “I’m in love with everything I see,” says Nick. It would be churlish not to agree with him.