Sound — 9
01. Super Colossal - I really like this song. It starts off with an odd groove, but it really has some memorable licks. At about 25 secs. into the song it starts on a really awesome tune. The octaver does give Satch a really huge sound in this song. I'm not too huge on the main theme though. 02. Just Like Lightnin' - this one is really a groove tune. I like the light overdriven guitar tone. The build up riff is great, and I like the way that he throughs off right back into the swinging main riff. The solo's cool, and he makes good use of a wah pedal for sure. I just wish that it had a busier solo. For the song being so relaxed and flowing, he could of used more of a blues influence to play his solo. But, it's still a great song. 03. It's So Good - this is pretty standard Satch stuff. It's a pretty upbeat, but it really doesn't stand out as one of the better tunes on the album. It really just sounds like a jam. The song structure is kind of weak too, but the phrasing is nice. 04. Redshift Riders - this one sounds like it should have been released on Crystal Planet. I love it. The leads are great, and he makes really good use of his trem. It's a really great tune, and there's not too much to pick apart. The solo's great. The intro riff isn't the best, but the song's great. 05. 10 Words - my favorite song off the new album. It's great from beginning to end. It's his slower, emotional song from this album. The riff that starts at 37 secs. into the song is amazing. There's no constructive criticism to give to this song. One of my favorite Satch tuhnes. 06. A Cool New Way - I don't like this song as well. It's not really that memorable. But it's got a really hypnotic feel, and it really is so relaxed. It's got the same effect as Flying in a Blue Dream, as it kind of makes your mind wonder, and you almost drift off, but not quite. The solo is nice too, and I love the bluesy diads. 07. One Robot's Dream - this one is kind of a different song. It's not consistantly great, but it has some moments where it really picks up. However, most of the song has a really lifeless feel. There's also a section where Satch just scrapes the strings (on a clean channel). It's got some interesting phrases, but it doesn't really distinguish itself among the better songs on the album. 08. The Meaning Of Love - well, after the last 2 songs this is a step in the right direction. It's still not up to the high standards of the first few songs, but it has more character then the 2 previous tunes. It doesn't really have much of a theme, but it does have a nice feel, and it really picks up when the solo starts at around 2: 30 into the song. 09. Made Of Tears - Satch really picks things back up with this song. It's really nice. I love the light swing feel that the rhythm gives it. The leads are also really good, and it has a really awesome solo. I love the way Satch plays this one. He chokes up on his notes a bit more, and plays with a little more force then in a lot of his slower songs, and it gives his playing more feeling. It also really builds up, and then fades down well. 10. Theme For A Strange World - I love how this song starts. The feel of the song changes after the leads start, but it gets back on track again. It does change around a lot, but that helps to give it character. The main intro tune is the onlt really memorable riff in the song, but he does re-use it a bit, so that helps to make the song great. 11. Movin' One - wow. This is another really great song. The rhythm adn leads fit together really well. I love the main theme. The solo is great, and really takes the feel of the song and builds on it. There's not much else to say other than that this is one of Satch's best tunes. 12. A Love Eternal - Satch keeps up the hot streak with this song. It's a slower song, but it seems to be thought out a little more than the other slow songs on the album, so it loses the jam feel. At 1:50 it changes tune, and it's absolutely great. And really changes things up at the right time, because the song it starting to get a bit boring at that point, then he brings it back to life. He also does a nice job of pulling it back to the main riff. 13. Crowd Chant - I think Satch needs to lay off the G3 tours, cause this sounds very Vai-ish. Of course that isn't a bad thing. It's a really cool song, and Satch really steps up on this one, and tries something different. It's kind of axperimental at parts. And the theme that starts at 2:03 sounds like something that should be played at an NHL hockey game. I didn't like this one at first, but it's starting to grow on me. The crowd in the background is a little different too, but that's what helps to make it so recognizable.
Overall Impression — 9
While this isn't Joe's best effort to date, he lets his amazing technical abilities take a back seat to his tasteful and thoughtful playing. The result is something a little different, but no less enjoyable than his other more recent studio releases. If you're a Joe Satriani fan, or you like guitar solos that show some feeling, then this album deffinately comes with my recommendation.