Album Review: "A Beginner's Guide To Bravery" by David Keenan

16th January 2020 //

Hey everyone!

If on this mighty fine Thursday you are looking for an escape,
an escape to a sound world you might've not explore before,
we invite you to check out David Keenan's debut album.

We get this feeling of pure joy whenever an album takes us on a ride and lets us lose ourselves in the music. (Not an Eminem pun, promise!)
David Keenan's album did exactly that for us, so please join us on journey of discovering the album.

Artist: David Keenan
Title: A Beginner's Guide To Bravery
Genre: Folk
Label: Rubyworks
Release Date: 10th January 2020

David Keenan is a singer/songwriter from Dundalk, Ireland.

David has always found the fascinating in the seemlingly mundane. That creativity and imagination have helped the songwriter to find his style.
On the journey of finding his style and voice, David went to Liverpool to find Lee Mavers, singer of The La's. And while he didn't find Lee, he found confidence - confidence in his writing, his performing and his ability to sing each song like it was his last, an ability he admires in artist such as Damian Dempsey and Jacques Brel.

His debut album, "A Beginner's Guide To Bravery" was written over the span of four years, embedding stories of the past, present and future within the eleven tracks which were recorded within a week. Giving the songs time to tell him exactly where they wanted to go shows David's ability to really lean in and let his craft develop.

And he's right - there's no sense in rushing, it's just the beginning. Journeys unfold over time.

His passionate performances have captivated large audience including the times he played support sets for Glen Hansard, Rodrigo y Gabriela and Hozier.

1) James Dean
2) Unholy Ghosts
3) Altar Wine
4) Love In A Snug
5) Tin Pan Alley
6) Good Old Days
7) The Healing
8) Origin Of The World
9) Eastern Nights
10) Evidence Of Living
11) Subliminal Dublinia

Opener "James Dean" prepares you for the journey you are about to embark on in the most gentle way. It's minimalistic, it's soothing, the closer you listen, the more you'll find yourself ready for more. More poetry, more stories sung by David.

"Unholy Ghosts" unfolds and blossoms into a song bigger than the first few chords would let you suspect. Towards the end you are engulfed in warm fiddles, steady drums, welcoming acoustics and a voice you don't want to stop listening to. 
Of course "Altar Wine" needs to be mentioned. It gives us the feeling of driving on the highway past midnight, you're one of the only ones travelling, travelling to where you're going but also travelling to where David Keenan takes you with this song. It's one of the most haunting, most captivating songs on the record.

It seems like David has a thing for starting a song off calm and mysterious, but letting it crescent into something bigger than imaginable. With choruses that make you move your entire body, "The Healing" wins you over with rapid rhythms, intensifying instrumentals and the passion with which David tells you these stories.

To sum it up: David Keenan has managed to create his very own sound world. One that's filled with poetry, charm and mystery. It allows you to go on a journey as you travel through the songs, discovering new elements and highlights each time you listen. "A Beginner's Guide To Bravery" is a record that transports you into another place and time and that's a pretty big achievement.

You should listen to these tracks: Unholy Ghosts, Altar Wine, The Healing, Origin Of The World

Watch David's acoustic performance of "Alter Wine" right here:

- buy and/or stream "A Beginner's Guide To Bravery" here -

David Keenan online: Website | Twitter | Facebook | Spotify | YouTube | Instagram

Thank you for your visit!

Credits // Words: Vanessa Jetwash | Image: via Backseat PR


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