Artist: Robbie Robertson
Release Date: 11/11/2016
Just like Chapter and Verse, Springsteen’s audio companion to his autobiography, Robertson’s Testimony might leave you asking why this song and not that one. It doesn’t matter really, especially when Robertson found it wise to include the song sketch “Twilight,” which may just be one of his best songs ever.
A thrilling new mix of “Testimony,” with U2, Nile Rodgers and a Gil Evans horn chart, kicks off this 18-song anthology of previously released, well documented and burned into the soul music.
A live “Rainy Day Women # 12 & 35” from the Dylan/Band tour ’74 works well with the live documentation from those two great live rock encounters, Live at the Academy of Music and of course, The Last Waltz. Two vintage renderings from Levon and the Hawks, “I’m Gonna Play The Honky Tonks” and an early Robertson comp, “He Don’t Love Love (And He’ll Break Your Heart)” fit well with material from Robertson post-Band days. Would I have liked a few demos from the glory days to complement the stunning fragility of “Twilight”? Sure. But that’s why Robertson wrote the book and I didn’t.
– Mike Jurkovic