ALBUM REVIEW: Experience the ‘healing power of music’ through Hannah and Ben

Hannah Sanders and Ben Savage sing together on their debut album as a duo, Before the Sun, out now on Sungrazing Records. Photo by Rosie Hardy.

Before The Sun, Hannah Sanders and Ben Savage, Sungrazing Records, Out Now

In Tim Burton’s 1989 film “Batman”, Jack Nicholson (The Joker) said: “Haven’t you ever heard of the healing power of laughter?”

East Anglian folk duo Hannah Sanders and Ben Savage, special guests of Spalding Folk Club just two weeks ago, plan to spread “the healing power of music” if their debut album as a duo is anything to go by.

Before The Sun features two of the duo’s own songs, starting with “The Fall (Hang” which gives full vent to her Annie Lennox-like vocals.

The pair’s other, original song, “What’s It Tonight My Love?”, appears to be inspired by the track which immediately precedes it, the astonishingly beautiful “The Sun Is Gonna Rise” written by Native American performer Bill Miller.

One song after another, “Clayton Boone”, “Deep Blue Sea” by American folk legend Pete Seeker and Richie Stearns’ “Ribbons and Bows” just pour out with ambience and serenity.

We love the feeling that singing (The Sun Is Gonna Rise) gives (as) Bill Miller’s works remind us of the healing power of music

Hannah Sanders and Ben Savage, Before The Sun

Even the more traditional folk songs like “Come All Ye Fair and Tender Maids”, which Hannah first performed alongside her mum and sister as travelling family band, The Dunns, “Lady Margaret” and “Unquiet Grave” are delivered with the kind of care and loyalty the pair spoke about during their visit to Spalding on June 7.

Finally, there is Bob Dylan’s “Boots of Spanish Leather” where Ben Savage’s singing voice sounds strikingly like Michael Crawford in his Phantom of the Opera days.

Quite simply, Before The Sun is one of the best albums of any genre I have heard this year.

To buy it, visit

Review by Winston Brown

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