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ALBUM REVIEW

Hank Woji
AMERICAN DREAMS
©2008 K Z Records
Review by Lucky Boyd
Co-Founder, MyTexasMusic.com

Hank Woji has no problem with, and is rather adept at, creating a fence. Generally, you must come down on one side or the other of his subject matter. However, if you are mature enough to set your politics aside, you’ll find the timelessness in his songs, each transcending current events and eventually becoming an anthem of life. Some of the best songs of our time started as political statements, but over time have become less galvanizing and have just become good songs. There’s a lot of that on this album. Musically, the album is put together nicely, using an upbeat folk-rock filter with a cast of accomplished pickers. Woji taps into the strength of his MyTexasMusic membership mates to assemble a ‘who’s who’ of Houston-area musicians. Woji’s delivery is passionate and crisp, even on the darkest of his cuts, which is arguably “Yuletide Blues.” There’s a train-beat knee-slapper included that still has a poignant message, a typical tongue-in-cheek Woji composition. “Patriot Games” is reprised, and without a doubt, “Livin’ On The Edge” is the album’s best cut, deep within from which Woji derives the album’s title as he tells an all-too-often story, while getting a point across as only Hank Woji can.

Stats:
Produced by Hank Woji, 15 cuts, 10 written by Woji; Co-writes: Ronnie Brandt, Dan L. Ford, Carly Sheehan; Covers: Brian Mullins, Martin Hoffman, Woody Guthrie; Musicians and Vocalists: Jeff Duncan, Thomas Helton, Mike Mizma, Anton Ullrich, Mark Zeus, Ken Gaines, Jack Saunders, Gary Sapone, T.C. Smythe, Alan Huff, Yolandra Jones, Emily Dugas Bollinger, Kristen Jensen, Glynace Eastham, Dodd Eastham, Aaron Inkrott; Engineering: Aaron Inkrott, Jacob Meador, Haniel Trisna, Michael Mikulka; Mastering: Haniel Trisna; tri-fold digi-pack, full-color, liner notes, 3-color disc, replicated; Running time: approx 75 minutes