Steve Vai is a top guitar virtuoso. He has been identified with many different artists and musicians throughout his lengthy career, but more importantly he has had a successful solo career which has shown him to be a masterful guitar player with a keen sense of eccentric sounds and awesome shredding. This is not his first solo career album, but is one of the most important albums he made. Let’s take a listen to it and see where we go musically.
We kick off with Bad Horsie which is an awesome piece with some insane guitar playing. A horse sound then kicks off this truly awesome piece of shredding and Metal inspiring playing. It sounds really amazing for an instrumental of its kind, Steve Vai is a masterful player in a class of his own. An incredible listen, this is a top track for inspiring others to pick up the guitar. The groove here is just as good as the excellent guitar playing, proving that Steve Vai has an excellent ear for music. It goes into an interesting breakdown in the second half, before launching straight back into the incredible playing here. Truly amazing, and an inspirational listen, this is so cool that one needs to have shades on to listen to this. At the end are some horse grunting noise samples, brilliant.
Following is Juice which is a sped up and awesome piece once again focusing on Steve Vai’s amazing guitar playing. It is strange that he is not more appreciated by the Rock music world, he does fantastically here. His obvious knowledge of chords, scales, playing techniques and skill is not to be underestimated. This is a fantastic listen that does not get old, sounding as fresh and inspired as it does from the day of release. Another excellent song showcasing a brilliant shred guitar player, this sounds truly amazing. The solo here is very frenetic and blistering, and definitely sounds amazingly awesome. A great effort by Steve Vai, this is super valuable as music. The speech ending is hilarious.
Die To Live begins with some brilliant electric guitar phrasing and sounds top. It goes into a slower and more melodic groove based piece that continues the amazing guitar work of earlier on in the album. A more laidback listen from Steve Vai. It is also very good length wise, not being super long like other shred guitarists have their tracks to be. In the middle is a synth string section and some more melodic playing than usual from Steve Vai. Pretty cool stuff to hear, this is how guitar is played very brilliantly. Steve Vai shows the world how it’s done, and it is done very well indeed. Great instrumental piece.
The Boy From Seattle begins with some nice clean guitar parts that are very beautiful. Nothing on this album sounds out of place, and even for a slower piece such as this one, Steve Vai can play brilliantly and is a master crafter of music. It is ideal for hearing for that drive with friends down to the beach on a warm summer day. Brilliant piece of music, this is really awesome listening and just sounds superb. Relaxing yet full of energy, there is nobody quite like Steve Vai musically. The midsection is more subdued and relaxing, with some Jimi Hendrix sounding playing, except it is not Hendrix, it is Steve Vai. A really cool and awesome listen, this is really amazing for a solo guitar player. It goes back into the guitar parts at the start which are amazing. Great stuff, with a gentle finish.
The oddly titled Ya-Yo-Gakk begins with a solid guitar intro and pitch shifted up vocals that are completely nonsensical. This is fresh and different, with a call-and-response section from the vocal section and guitar parts here. This is definitely the more eccentric side of Steve Vai, but sounds just as good and nicely fitting here as the other songs on this album. A really cool listening experience with the pitch shifted vocals sounding very different. Another good effort here.
Next is Kill The Guy With The Ball which is a seven minute long piece. It begins with pounding fast drums and random speech of sorts. Before long, the guitars enter and we are here in a very much Thrash sort of mode. It is frenetic, fast and definitely enjoyable. An incredible journey through sound and guitar textures, this is a killer sound, hence the name of the song. Steve Vai pulls every trick in the book to impress you, successfully of course. There are a vast array of tempo changes, shift in dynamics, guitar playing and other treats for you to hear. Although this is very much staying with a basic guitar/bass/drums format, it is absolutely amazing. The wah-wah effects here are really awesome, too. In the second half comes a weird set of breakdowns that are exceptionally good. Towards the end, some wordless gospel harmonies enter and Steve Vai plays slower and more melodically here. Excellent effort with a suspenseful twist, this is extraordinarily good. At the end is the sound of static fire burning, followed by a Pink Floyd esque heart beat sound. Nice.
Tender Surrender is last on this album, and sounds like a beautiful and quite romantic sounding piece of music. Lush, relaxing and gorgeous, this is another exceptional Steve Vai piece that is definitely worth your time. Complete with 1970s style organ, this is a genuinely good listen. It builds up in intensity as it goes on, showcasing a wonderful and powerful style of guitar playing here. It is worth repeat listens, as is the rest of the album. Steve Vai builds up the piece with fantastic guitar, the guitar harmonics do sound truly amazing here. A really fine and awesome piece of music, it goes back into the slower, romantic towards the end of the song here. Excellent listening, it goes rather crazy and different at the end of the track. Brilliant.
Steve Vai has had many milestones in his music career. This is merely one of them, a truly awesome and inspired instrumental album. Although these are indeed, purely instrumentals, it is one of the greatest guitar albums out there and just goes to show how wonderfully amazing Steve Vai is as a player. If you love guitars and fast shred style playing, you will definitely enjoy this top album.
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