|OUR PERSONAL REVIEWS|
MAK'S REVIEW: I only wish I had gotten this album sooner!!! This is some of Joe's best work in his 16 years of recording. The diverse album includes heavy-metal influenced tracks like "War" and the title track and also features emotional tracks like "Cryin'" and "Rubina's Blue Shy Happiness". The Extremist also includes one of Joe's greatest commercial successes, "Summer Song", which is still featured in a multitude of radio advertisements. In general, this album is a must-have for all Joe fans or even rock music fans for that matter.
Star Rating (out of 5): *****
EVAN'S REVIEW: "Holy crap this album is good" is a quote I made the day I got this album, and it pretty much sums it all up. Incredibly diverse album, all the songs are great. Summer Song, one of Joe's biggest commercial successes, lives up to its standards. The title track is great, and while the heavy metal sounds of War rock the soul, the amazing emotion sqeezed into Cryin' and Rubina's Blue Sky Happiness touch the soul. Simply put, The Extremist is an excellent piece of work, and Joe should be proud!
Star Rating (Out of 5): *****
|OTHER PEOPLE'S REVIEWS
Latest from the thinking man's guitar god displays Satch's expressive range, devotion to melody, and a few instrumental wrinkles (axeman picks up banjo and harmonica here). New rhythm section of Matt and Gregg Bissonette powers the business here sympathetically. Level of play is so consistent that album rockers and hard rockers can pretty much select tracks at will. Look for Satriani to rake in more ore with this one.
Entertainment Weekly (8/28/92)
...you've gotta love his bounding enthusiasm and heartfelt bag of riffs...
A review by critic Mat Snow (© Emap Consumer Magazines Limited. For personal use only)
When it comes to stunt-guitar, Jeff Beck is still probably the boss, but of the youngish pretenders such as Steve Vai and George Lynch, San Francisco's Joe Satriani is the most accessible. Though he sang on his previous and slightly superior album, Flying In A Blue Dream, Satriani now shuns the microphone to let the guitar alone hog the spotlight. The Tortelier of the electric axe (Vai and Metallica's Kirk Hammett have been among his masterclass pupils), Joe Satriani favours a clean, sweetly processed lead tone and warmly textured harmonies. Like Def Leppard, even at his raunchiest our man eschews the nasty lick or excess crunch. Indeed, in his bluesy melodicism and an unfussy rhythm section recalling Hank Marvin and multi-tracking pioneer Les Paul, the mercury-fingered maestro harks back to a pre-metal paradise of curly leads and the kind of smiling facility that at its blandest supplies theme tunes to urban thrillers but at best will inspire a million would-be plank-spankers to great things.
A review by critic Robert John
Although it seems like yesterday that Joe Satriani was giving guitar lessons to Kirk Hammett and Steve Vai, most people didn't know back then that this local guitar guru had his own brilliant agenda to unleash. With four shots of commercial success behind him, he has become a unique guitar god, with a humble image that's the polar opposite of his contemporaries. The Extremist codifies all his previous efforts into one signature sound, pushing aside the dazzling fretwork for a more linear and melodic focus. The detailed methods of Flying In A Blue Dream are gone, replaced with a live atmosphere void of any excessive overdubs. Production by Andy Johns, as well as the new Bissonette brothers' rhythm section, makes for pleasant departures into edgy, stereo-like effects with each voice (this is Andy Johns' finest work since Zeppelin). Although "Summer Song" can't get past its soundtrack appeal, the most amazing cuts are the rhythm-happy, melodic charmers such as the title track, "War" and "Motorcycle Driver."
Some consumer reviews:
~I'm not much of a fan of Summer Song, probably Joes biggest mainstream hit (Sony used it on one of their TV commercials and was cool enough to actually credit Joe on the commercial), but there are some gems on the album that make this a must-have album. "Tears in the Rain" is not only a great single-guitar acoustic song, but mere mortal guiatists can actually play the song if they spend a few hours at it! "New Blues" and "Why" is Joe at his best. One thing - don't expect the album to be full of over-the-top, balls-to-the-wall rockers like "Flying in a Blue Dream" or "Surfing with the Alien". It has a few good shred songs, but Joe seems to have slightly mellowed on this recording, which is not neccesarily a bad thing.
~I would venture to say that most people have never heard of Joe Satriani. His music can be best classified as "space rock", although The Extremist is his most conventional album. I first got hooked on Joe after hearing Summer Song on the radio. It typifies his best music - fast, exciting, amazing guitar playing to a fun beat. The Extremist has several rockers on it, as well as a few slow but beautiful ballads. You should know that there are no vocals, as in most of Joe's music. The variety of songs on the CD still keeps me listening to it. If you like guitar rock, I highly reccomend this album. It is simply unique and awesome.
~This is another CD that Joe performs his best. His approach to Black Style Blues on New Blues is excellent.