review by Darren McIntyre
Photos By Gary Cooper
Joe Satriani is a rock guitarist/composer/songwriter/guitar instructor from Westbury, New York who has been active since 1978. Joe’s early career was as a guitar instructor with students that included Kirk Hammett(Metallica), David Bryson(Counting Crows), Kevin Cadogan(Third Eye Blind), Larry LaLonde(Primus & Possessed), Alex Skolnick(Testament), Geoff Tyson & David Turin to name but a few. Satriani went on to have a successful solo career which started in the late 80s, he is a 15-time Grammy Award Nominee and has sold 10 million albums making him the best-selling instrumental rock guitarist of all time. Joe was recruited by Mick Jagger for his first solo album, had a brief stint in Deep Purple and has been a guitarist for rock supergroup Chickenfoot since 2008, Joe has released 18 studio albums and tonight he rolls into Glasgow having had the gig postponed 3 times but tonight is going to be something special. At 8 pm precisely the light dims and the house PA fades as we welcome the man himself as he walks onto the stage in his usual pose of arms held out wide and his trademark black glasses to let us know that we are about to blast off with
Nineteen Eighty – Joe gets ready and has his guitar strapped in as he lets rip with a killer lick that allows Kenny to bring in his pounding snare drum beats that let this track kick in. The full-on bassline is dropping a meaty funk groove that just gives this track depth before Joe sizzles with slick cool fingerwork that just takes us to another place as we feel the energy ooze from this electrifying guitarist as he thrills this eager Glasgow audience as they lap up every morsel of electricity that is pouring from the stage tonight, the crowd are eating from Joe’s palm as he rips his way through this epic opener that has Kenny pounding away from the back of the room. The crowd are loving every second of this magician as he takes us onto
Sahara – Haunting keys are rippling through the intro as Joe brings this foot-stomping rocker track to our attention as the full bass kicks are letting the rhythm section get this awesome piece off the ground. Joe slips in with cool mesmerising licks that are captivating this audience for sure, the track is a real slow burner as the tempo changes pace several times during the track and this showcases the intensity of this incredible musician. The whole arrangement is bubbling to the surface as the whole band is hitting their stride already and giving us their all tonight, we feel the buzz ooze as we rock into
The Elephants Of Mars – We get a shredding power riff that comes into slick licks with exquisite fingerwork that have a thundering snare drum kick to get this beast off the ground.
The guitar work is just awesome as Joe conducts the boys with precision as this melodic monster builds and builds as this deep bass-laden beast kicks in the doors and lets us have it big time, I am standing in awe as a virgin Satriani first-timer and must say that this is something else entirely. The whole arrangement is a rollercoaster of sound that twists us one way and then the next as the cool keys ripple through the mid-section and let this track erupt for sure, we slide into the epic Ice 9 – Joe chats to the audience and thanks us for coming out as it only took 3 years for the boys to let rip with this awesome rhythm-based beast that comes complete with cymbal snaps and solid snare drum punches that are wrapped in quite simply stunning guitar chords that are just wowing this excited Glasgow audience.
The full bass grooves are dropping magical tones that let this full-on track show its teeth as the boys drive their killer track through the heart of the venue tonight, we are witnessing a real showman here tonight as the whole arrangement is popping with killer sounds and bass off between Joe & Bryan as they trade chords that just excite this swelling audience with real ease, we are just getting settled in as the boys throw us a curve ball and drop us into Thunder High On The Mountain – Joe changes his guitar and lets Kenny introduce the track with a pounding bass kick that brings this awesome song to life. Joe steps forward and lets his fingers do the talking as the guitar just shines as it glistens in the light shining from the house lights as this fantastic foot-stomping rocker track just erupts into life.
The audience is feeling the slickness of the guitar maestro as he wanders around the stage and stops to let the crowd feel the energy oozing from this incredible gig as we watch in awe as Joe & the gang take us through our paces and just pound us with sheer musicianship that elevates tonight’s show to another level, I am standing next to Mrs Satriani as she joyfully claps along to her husband as he rips through the O2 tonight with sheer precision that does not waver throughout this epic performance, we roll into
One Big Rush – The track begins with a thundering intro from Kenny as he pounds on the snare and lets this track flourish as the boys join in with a full bass groove that wraps itself around this slick piece of work. The guitar is just singing as Joe sizzles with sheer joy at this melodic rocking track that is just building with every note that flows from the stage, we are taken on a journey of sheer epic proportions as the boys deliver a no-nonsense show that was well worth the wait. As I said I am a first-timer to the Joe Satriani experience and must say that the guy just delivers with epic notes that are something else, we are being treated to a show of magical proportions that just lets us float away and feel the swagger oozing from this talisman, we rock into
Blue Foot Groovy – A funkier groove comes our way as Joe brings a cool slick guitar riff that works well with the rhythm groove that is coming at us as Kenny drops sweet meaty snare drum beats as the cymbal snaps let this track breathe.
The whole arrangement is a fresh piece that just lets us feel the swagger oozing from the boys as they dig deep and hit us with a sledgehammer groove that is something else. The sizzling guitar licks are filling this place and just getting everybody excited as we watch in awe as Joe drives recklessly through the middle of the venue and is destroying everything in his path tonight with exquisite playing that just tells us why he is one of the finest guitarists around today, we catch our breath for a second as we roll into Flying In A Blue Dream – The lights turn to a blue haze as Joe sets himself up and brings this melodic blues piece to a fine opening.
The rhythm section is coming through with cool grooves as the guitar licks just ripple towards us and let this colossal track spring into life, we are getting meaty basslines that are just wrapping themselves around this gritty rasping guitar-laden beast as we just watch in awe as the boys let rip and slice open the O2 tonight, we are stamping our feet to this funky pounding beat as Joe sizzles with every chord he drops on us tonight. There is a real heavy riffed section midway through the track as this epic arrangement just dazzles and lets us float off to another place with the sheer skills on the show tonight, we ready ourselves as Joe hits us with Spirits, Ghosts & Outlaws – Cool basslines drop colossal grooves on us as Joe steps forward and brings us slick sweet clean lines as this punchy beast gets underway. The fuzzy riffs are wrapped in deep funk grooves as the bass drops fantastic tones all over this gritty rocking monster that just builds and builds. The rhythm section is hitting us with pounding snare drum kicks as the cymbal snaps let the tone come for us and let this sizzling rocker anthem do its thing.
The crowd are just sitting in awe as the boys change the tempo a little and take us in another direction as this slick rocking beast kicks in the doors and lets us have it big style, we come to the colossal groove laden Faceless – Joe comes to the mic and chats to the crowd as he brings us the colossal track that begins with cool piano-style keys that are ably backed with a pounding bass kick that lets the groove build and come at us. The incredible guitar work is just exciting the crowd as Joe stands like a giant in front of us and gives us slick clean chords that are just filling the O2 tonight and it is just incredible to watch, I am fortunate that I get to see so many of the world’s top musicians & bands do their thing and feel incredibly honoured to see this guitar legend tonight. there are slick licks that are driving this epic arrangement onwards as we feel the energy oozing from this showman as he drops the hammer with precision as the tempo changes from time to time and just confirms that this guy is the real deal, onwards we go Crystal Planet – The doors come flying off as this fast and furious piece just erupts and lets the rhythm section bring the killer snare drum beats that get the track off the ground. The phenomenal guitar work comes in and delivers a full-on slick groove that just gets this excited crowd on their feet, we are rocking and rolling now as the boys give us all they have as this thundering beast just erupts with epic proportions as the heavy basslines drop fantastic grooves all over us as this sweet melodic number builds and builds as the track fills the air tonight and delivers nothing short of incredible notes that are on the money, we roll into the last song of the first set with Summer Song – This is a slick piece to finish on as Joe sizzles with colossal fingerwork that just sets this place alight with a wall of magnificent sound that is just incredible. The rumbling rhythm section is giving us a solid snare drum beat that works well with the deep funky basslines that are wrapping themselves around this crunchy rocking beast, we are rocking and rolling into the second half with smiles on our faces and sheer joy in our hearts as Joe and the boys have delivered something special.
Drum Solo – Kenny takes to the kit and just lets loose with a flurry of deafening beats that are covered in sweet cymbal crashes that let this solo come to life. We are seeing a true master at work here as he covers every inch of his Tama kit as he pounds on the skins and just brings the groove to Glasgow tonight, we are watching an octopus in action tonight as Kenny just drives forward and gives us a real monster show of epic proportions tonight in this truly awesome show of greatness from one of the finest drummers around today, we rock into Energy – We slip into a real gritty rocking vibe with this fast and furious groove track that hits us like a juggernaut with destruction on its mind as Joe sizzles with epic guitar licks that are just awesome to watch. The rhythm section is hitting us like a steam train as it pounds on the snare drum beats and finishes with cymbal crashes that are just incredible, we get fantastic basslines that bring a real depth to this sizzling beast that just stops us in our tracks.
The stop-start groove is just steering us one way and then the next as we just sit back and revel in the splendour of this musician as he drops the hammer on us with great precision, this is just a joy to behold as we feel the sheer energy oozing from this fantastic gig tonight, we roll into E 104th St, NYC 1973 – The funk element is brought to this track as deep full-on basslines drop epic grooves on us as Joe sizzles with ease as the synth keys deliver cool tones that let this track do its thing. The guitar work is just sublime As we stand in awe as we feel the rawness oozing from the stage as the boys ramp up the groove, bass grooves are pouring from the stage as they mingle with epic guitar licks that are finished with solid snare drum beats that wrap themselves around this classy melodic number that lets us move onto Keyboard Solo – All eyes are on Rai as he opens with a cool melodic groove that has us all glued to him as he goes through the gears and gives us a show of sheer melodies that is just on the money.
The tones are just fantastic as he takes us one way then the next and just delivers sweet cool notes that take us to another place as Joe and the boys relax and let the crowd feel the energy oozing from this guy, we gather ourselves as we roll into Cool No 9 – The track comes to life with a pounding bass kick that has cymbal snaps to let this track come for us. We have a sweet clean guitar lick oozing from Joe as he sets about bringing the riffs to Glasgow tonight and he does so with epic precision, this is another colossal track that just catches us off guard as Joe slips in and out with sweet tones that have a dirty laden groove to back it up. This has been some night of pure musicianship that if you missed it shame on you, spellbinding, mesmerising and just off the scale good tonight, Ali Farke, Dick Dale An Alien & Me – A thundering rhythm section bursts into life as a shredding Joe stands front and centre as he shreds like an absolute beast in front of us.
This is a slick well-laden track that has depth, attitude and bags of swagger this killer track hits us from all sides and gives us a shake for sure, we are feeling the groove flowing from the boys tonight as they deliver a no-nonsense beat that has us all licking our lips with anticipation for sure, we rock into Shapeshifting – This is a beast that comes at us with a thundering bass kick and cymbal snaps that let Joe sizzle with epic proportions as he steps forward and drops colossal chords on us that just let this track light up the O2 tonight. The bass sounds are filling the air as we change pace for a second as the sizzling chords come alive and bring this track to our attention, the sheer musicianship is off the scale tonight and I for one am glad I was here to witness it, rocking onwards we get into Teardrops – The pace is slowed a little for this punchy deep bass track as we feel the depth of this epic track wash over us. The snare drum punches are letting the slick sizzling guitar work do its thing as we watch on as Joe ramps up the pressure tonight and delivers a no-nonsense show that has been nothing short of mesmerising.
The crisp licks are something else as we feel the colossal tones fill the air as basslines drop fantastic tones all over this foot-tapping blues track that is just music to the ears for sure, we are gathering pace now as we roll into Luminous Flesh Giants – The rhythm section opens up this gritty rocking beast as we get killer basslines that are twinned with cool synth keys that let this track come for us. The guitar work is just insane as Joe lets rip with precision chords that are exciting this crowd as he works his way through his back catalogue and just brings the groove to us tonight. We are getting killer licks that just bring wave after wave of slick cool licks that are just exciting us, we roll into If I Could Fly – A sweet cool pounding snare drum beat gets this killer track off the ground as Joe stands front and centre and just shreds like nothing on earth.
We get cool snare drum beats that work with the cool keys that are littered throughout this fantastic piece of music, we are getting everything from this guy tonight as he takes us through the gears as brings depth, attitude and bags of swagger to the show tonight as acoustic strumming chords balance out this fantastic track, we are looming towards the end of the show as we get Always With Me, Always With You – Joe chats with us and thanks us again for coming out as he introduces the track and drops in sweet clean chords that let this track breathe. We get melodic chords that are working so well with the sweet bass kicks that are flowing effortlessly through this awesome piece of music, the keys are bringing the track depth and cool tones as Joe just drives this classic track onward with real ease. The musicianship is something else as the track just rises and takes your breath away for sure as the band just give us all they have tonight, we rock into Satch Boogie – This is a real ripper track that just lets Joe shred out and bring the rhythm section along for the ride as we get a pounding snare drum beat to let this track kick in the doors.
The slick clean chords are filling the air as the boys hit us with sweet deep basslines that just allow this track to bare its teeth and show us what it has, the keys are littered throughout this epic track as the whole arrangement bursts into life and lets us feel the groove flowing effortlessly through the O2 tonight, we come to the last but one in the form of Crowd Chant – Joe changes his weapon of choice and cuts loose as the crowd gets involved and just lets Satch do his thing as the pounding bass kicks let this track open and flow. The guitar work is just insane as we are watching in awe as he just flows freely and delivers a slick cool riff that gets this crowd on their feet and clapping loudly as the keys bring another dimension to this epic arrangement. We are thanking our lucky stars that Joe & the boys came to Glasgow and delivered a cool mind-blowing set that will live with us for a long time, we come to the end of the night and we finish on the classic Surfing With The Alien – This crowd favourite rips open the doors and brings a solid snare drum groove that just gets us all up on our feet and moving to this classic.
The slick cool chords are a real mind-blowing lick that works well with the pounding rhythm section that just delivers a knockout beat that brings in basslines that tell their own story for sure. What we have witnessed tonight is just incredible as Joe & the boys brought the swagger, charisma, attitude and sheer joy to Glasgow with an endless supply of slick cool guitar work that is just off the scale.
Joe Satriani –
Joe – Guitars
Bryan – Bass
Rai – Keys / Acoustic / Electric Guitar
Kenny – Drums
The Elephants Of Mars
Thunder High On The Mountain
One Big Rush
Blue Foot Groovy
Flying In A Blue Dream
Spirits, Ghosts & Outlaws
E 104th St NYC 1973
Cool No 9
Ali Farke, Dick Dale An Alien & Me
Luminous Flesh Giants
If I Could Fly
Always With Me, Always With You
Surfing With The Alien