Hands Without Shadows review by Michael Angelo

logo Ultimate Guitar
  • Sound: 10
  • Lyrics: 10
  • Overall Impression: 10
  • Reviewer's score: 10 Gem
  • Users' score: 9 (29 votes)
Michael Angelo: Hands Without Shadows

Sound — 10
I actually got this cd at one of Michael's guitar clinics in LA for about $5. plus he aughtographed it to me. Michael Angelo Batio's sound is very distinctive here. Even when theres a song where other guitarists do a solo too, you can always tell when its michael. His blazing fast solos always catch your ear. The general music style is metal and neoclasical metal. All the songs are great, and I never get tired of listening to them. HWS, Zeppelin Forever, and Tribute to Randy are my favorites. None of the solos seem repetitve because its not just the same technique used each time. It sounds incredible.

Lyrics — 10
The lyrics are nonexistint, because this album has none. But during songs like Tribute to Randy, Zeppelin Forever, and Dream On, he plays the vocal melody on a guitar. Besides, the tracks don't need vocals, it would only take away from the rest of the music.

Overall Impression — 10
Overall, this is a great album. Hands down the best instrumental album I have ever heard. Great guitar parts, both lead and rythm. As I said earlier, the style is mostly metal, but Zeppelin Forever, All Along The Watchtower, and Dream On aren't so heavy and Zeppelin Forever has a real nice acoustic part in the song. You will not be dissapointed in buying this CD.

4 comments sorted by best / new / date

    Guitar Hurrican
    Saofan12 wrote: theres a lot of controversy over MAB vs Steve Vai, for me i think Angelo's the best out there but thats just me, i really haven't seen anyone better and this albums amazing if your a guitarist. if your not you wont like it as much.
    i think yngwie might be better...and petrucci is one of the greatist guitarists for his accuracy...i think it depends on what you would depict as the best...whether u r looking for just plain speed, or accuracy, or difficulty.
    Well, Michael Angelo Batio is without any doubt the fastest guitar player in the world. I'd always been a fan of top shredders like Yngwie Malmsteen and John Petrucci, as well as Steve Vai (Who doesn't have the speed, but does have the elegant and accurate technique); but when I first heard Michael I simply thought: Oh my god, this guy blows everyone I've ever heard out of the water; there is just no comparison. As for MAB Vs. Steve Vai; well, it's definate that Vai just doesn't even come close when it comes to speed, and I'd say that his sweep picking isn't as good. But Vai's Two-Handed Tapping is quite exceptional; though next to MAB's string-skipping apreggios + 1 tap-per-string technique, well...Simply amazing; and giving quite a distinctive sound too! If I had to choose between the two, I'd have said that Batio is the better player; and this is coming from a big Steve Vai fan (Because of his style of play; not style of music, thank god!). As for Yngwie Malmsteen...Well...I like his music, and his speed is quite commendable, but his show antics are frightfully unelegant and cheesy and the guy can't construct an improvised solo to save his life. Ever heard Mr Crowley by Ronnie James Dio, Rob Halford and Malmsteen? Well you should...Halford's voice is just spine-tingling and Yngwie's rythm guitar adaption is even sweeter than Randy's. But when it comes to the solos, I'm afraid Malmsteen just loses it. It's almost as if he wanted to fit so many different licks in in such a short space of time, which is fair enough...But it wasn't even that fast; just some blurring 3-note-per-string speed picking and some slipping and sliding off the beat after the Interlude. Anyway; back to Batio. I havn't actually heard much of this Album yet; just HWS and Tribute to Randy (Very good by the way). It's clear that Batio is a true rock instrumentalist; second only to Satriani! For those who don't know MAB and want a good idea of his speed; just take the fastest guitar playing you can possibly imagine and time it by 2: And that's how fast Michael Angelo plays!
    Missino wrote: Well, Michael Angelo Batio is without any doubt the fastest guitar player in the world.
    Well, right now he MIGHT be. I am a fan of Batio, no disrespect to him. But one person is definitly faster than all the rest. Shawn Lane Rest In Peace.