2012 / Stone Angel Music
Review by Michael Debbage
Better known as a producer of artists such as Paul Cardall, David Tolk and Steven Sharp Nelson as well as a drawn upon session musician, Ryan Tilby has found the time to record another tender solo recording. And much like fellow artist William Joseph, Tilby has taken the route of the road less travelled courtesy of lesser known reverent hymns. But instead of the piano, Tilby delivers his music courtesy of his uncomplicated but tender acoustic guitar work. Much like 2009’s Guitar Hymns, Sacred Guitar will find the uncanny ability to slow your pulse, take deep breaths and allow you to be still and focus on the Creator.
Based on the sound samples that can be heard on the internet, Sacred Guitar may be even more reflective and pastoral when compared with its predecessor. While there are a few obvious choices such as “Onward Christian Soldiers” and the beloved “Amazing Grace”, Tilby for the most part focuses on hymns that are not world renowned. This does not make the music any less impressive and Tilby daringly adds two self composed songs entitled “Lovely Morning” and the even more impressive “Hope” that continue the soothing reverent theme of its hymnal compatriots.
As previously stated this is not Tilby’s first solo recording. In fact, his first solo effort Guitar Hymns delivered a similar theme and performance. The difference found on Sacred Hymn is that Tilby’s playing is quite possibly even more tender but certainly much confident, more precise and polished. So if you enjoyed Ryan’s debut you will be thoroughly pleased with Sacred Hymns. But then again, what else would you expect from the label Stone Angel Music.
February 24, 2013
with Sheldon Pickering