443. This Side of Heaven – Beau MacDougall
THIS SIDE OF HEAVEN (1981)
I am conflicted at placing this album here. I have this aching feeling that more than any other previously reviewed title this one deserves to be significantly higher. Possibly MUCH higher! The first number could be a 2 or 1 and I wouldn’t flinch. This one and only solo project from Beau MacDougall is just that good and in undeniable an AYSO.
Now, I don’t know how someone might get around to owning it, but it’s worth it. It, like most music from the era, is victim of the criminal truth of now sense of history and no CD re-issues.
MacDougall, brother of early Daniel Amos member Alex MacDougall, this is a more guitar focused pop rock that fit right into what was happening musically at the turn of the decade of the 80’s on the pop side of things, especially on the West Coast with a little surf music thrown in. It was even nominated for a Grammy award, but unfortunately just never connected with the general CCM audience which is a real shame because it could and should have been a huge hit. Pop and soul with a decidedly high likability factor.
For those looking for comparison one might want to consider Tom Howard’s pop releases with more of a guitar emphasis. I might add here that there is some great guitar work here as well as on other projects he performed on, including many Solid Rock projects.