On his self-titled instrumental debut for Favored Nations,"Johnny Hiland" achieves something few new artists achieve in their first outing: a blend of taste and flash, in which emotional, solid composition and hair-raising performance complement rather than compete with each other. It takes a killer band to keep up with Hiland's energy and ideas, which explains the presence of Billy Sheehan, the "Eddie Van Halen" of the bass, Bill Holloman, who played keys and sax behind Hiland's main guitar hero, the late Danny Gatton, and drummer Pat Torpey from Mr. Big. This is a lineup that can keep up with Hiland's light-speed picking on "G-Wiz," "Swingin' Strings," and "Celtic Country." It can move with him through Western swing, screaming, razor-toned rock, and introspective ballads, and illuminate his soaring melodies on ballads like "Song for Helen" and "Truth Hurts" with sensitive empathy. Ricky Skaggs writes the final words, "I think "Johnny Hiland" is the most versatile guitar player I've ever heard. From Bill Monroe to Eddie Van Halen, he can play it all."
|02:41||In Your Face||Instrumental|
|03:16||Swinging The Strings||Instrumental|
|04:20||Until We Meet Again||Instrumental|
|03:58||Gatton To It||Instrumental|
|03:05||Song For Helen||Instrumental|
|03:04||Run With It||Instrumental|
|05:16||Orange Blossom Special||Instrumental|
|Johnny Hiland||Electric and Acoustic Guitar, Mandolin, Arrangements|
|Bill Holloman||Keys, Sax|
|Peter Collins||Production, Arrangements|
|Steve Vai||Executive Production|
|Neil Citron||Engineering, Mixing, Mastering|
|Recorded, mixed and mastered at The Mothership Studio, Hollywood, CA.
Design by Silverfrog.
Stylist/Grooming: Holly Chapman.