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Guaranteed to Satisfy

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Album Review

Since the departure of co-founder Tony Villanueva and their retreat from the major labels back into indie territory, the Derailers have bravely continued their reign as one of America's finest latter-day honky tonk bands, but guitarist, singer, and principle songwriter Brian Hofeldt nudges the band into a more pop oriented direction on their eighth studio album, Guaranteed to Satisfy. Of course, Hofeldt's ideas about pop are retro enough that this doesn't sound like a crass commercial move, but his fondness for the Beatles certainly makes its presence known on "The Get-Go," "The Sun Is Shining on Me," and the title tune, all of which are dominated by bittersweet '60s melodies and ringing guitar leads. Guaranteed to Satisfy also contains a higher melodrama quotient than the Derailers' early albums, with less crying in the beer and more heartfelt love songs, as well as one number about a bad man in need of a last chance to make good ("The Blood of a Man"). But don't get the idea that this band has left all the classic country themes behind — "Bad, Bad Girl" is a feisty celebration of a gal who makes friends easily, "Without You" is a sentimental but down-home celebration of the women who keep the home fires burning while their men are on the road, and while the cover of James Burton's "Corn Pickin" may not have any words, the guitar work says everything you need to know. There's a bit less fire in the latest edition of the Derailers than in their classic '90s lineup, but they still have an admirable gift for playing country music in the classic Bakersfield style, and even with some extra polish Guaranteed to Satisfy easily lives up to its title.


Formed: 1994 in Austin, TX

Genre: Country

Years Active: '90s, '00s, '10s

A honky tonk band following the tradition set by Buck Owens, Austin, TX's Derailers were led by vocalist/rhythm guitarist Tony Villanueva and lead guitarist Brian Hofeldt, longtime friends who grew up together in Oregon. After playing in various Portland-area rockabilly outfits, Villanueva relocated to Texas at the age of 19, and Hofeldt soon tagged along; after settling in Austin, the duo joined forces with Vic Gerard Ziolkowski, the bassist in a band called Two Hoots & a Holler, and began focusing...
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Guaranteed to Satisfy, The Derailers
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