Resolution, the new Favored Nations CD from the Andy Timmons Band is an impressive monument of extraordinary guitar-texture--aggressive, inspired, blissful, and simply irresistible. Bolstered by Timmons' blazing virtuosity and immaculate song craft, the record is an imaginative marriage of studied dynamics, smoldering grooves and hard-hitting musicality.
Recorded in Dallas, Resolution was co-produced by Timmons and bassist Mike Daane, with drummer Mitch Marine rounding out the band lineup. "This is the first real official Andy Timmons Band release," asserts Timmons. "When we first formed in 1988, we began to record a series of demos that eventually became ear X-tacy. These tracks mainly featured Mitch and Mike but due to occasional unavailability, other players were used. In a way Resolution is the very first unified band effort and the initial idea for half of the songs were written as a trio."
Each song on Resolution takes the listener on a new musical journey. "Deliver Us," the lead off track, unleashes an assault of explosive guitar riffs riding on a slammin' hot groove. Opening to the silky sounds of intricately rendered guitar tones, "Ghost Of You" establishes Timmons' imaginative approach to guitar playing; the song changes in mid-gear, transformed by a monstrous Zeppelin-esque riff and jaw-dropping solo before detouring back into more subtle and restrained musical shadings.
Moody and seductive, the title track has a distinct Eastern flavor. "'Resolution' was the last song we finished for the record," Timmons said. "The title, Resolution, has several meanings. My favorite one is 'the act of reducing something to its simplest form'. That's really the goal of the whole record... one guitar track, bass and drums... nothing simpler than that! The album cover image of the baby picking up the vinyl connects with that feeling of initial inspiration that got me into music in the first place."
Meanwhile, the jazzy "Gone" lowers the volume, its mournful mood framed by gorgeous chordal shapes and slinky guitar colors. "'Gone' was written on September 11, 2001," remembers Timmons. "I was on a tour bus as the whole world was watching this horrible tragedy unfold on CNN. I had called my wife right when the second tower was falling. Once the smoke cleared, all I could say to her was 'They're gone.' Like so many others, I felt sad, empty and outraged all at the same time. I picked up my guitar (as I often do in those emotional times) and the song just kind of wrote itself."
Listeners may need to strap on a seat belt for "Move On." Driven by a non-stop riff, Timmons flexes his musical muscle on this amphetamine paced rocker that culminates with a flashy Hendrix-ian solo. "The energy of that song is a classic example of the way the three of us play together."
"The Prayer/The Answer" begins with the softly echoed arpeggio sounds of scattered guitar notes that evoke a peaceful state of consciousness before revving it up with an explosion of guitar power; the song's coda features a playful nod to Jimmy Page's guitar solo heard on Joe Cocker's version of The Beatles' "With A Little Help From My Friends." Timmons owns up, "I did that consciously. If you listen close, you'll find several other tips of the hat throughout the record to some of my favorite players."
Closing the record is the hidden bonus track, "Headed For The Ditch," a fun-filled showcase of accomplished chicken-fried C&W guitar pickin' and Keith Moon styled gonzo drumming guaranteed to put a smile on your face and keep it there. "You feel like you're about to run off the road at any moment when you listen to (or play) this thing (laughs). That's why it's called 'Headed For The Ditch.' It was a blast to record and we just had to put it on as a surprise at the end."
What truly shines through on each of the CD's tracks is the confident sound of an artist given the freedom to explore his muse with no restrictions.
Reviews"'RESOLUTION' is musical thrill ride that explodes from start to finish." - All Access Magazine