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Cool #9
Down, Down, Down
Luminous Flesh Giants
Look My Way
Moroccan Sunset
Killer Bee Bop
Slow Down Blues
(You're) My World)
Sittin' Around

MAK'S REVIEW: A great deal of people were disappointed by this album. I was too, at first, but after a few listens, this album became one of my favorites. The tracks start off slower but gradually pick up speed and energy (best example of this is "Slow Down Blues"). Overall, the attitude of the album is a very bluesy one. The album also has a "live" aspect to it, with Andy Fairweather-Low, of Eric Clapton fame, laying down the rhythm guitar parts. Manu Katche is phenomenal on drums, composing intricate drum parts that fit the atmosphere of the album. If you don't have this album, I suggest you get it, but only if you're ready to accept that Joe enjoys different styles. If you already have it and never listen to it, give it another chance.

Star Rating (out of 5): ****

EVAN'S REVIEW: Jam-packed with smokin' killer blues and sounds reminiscent of the far east, Joe Satriani is a diverse experimental album for Joe. I am a huge blues fan and I know Joe is too, so this album was a sort of landmark for him in his career. "Cool #9" starts the album off with one of Joe's bigger hits, and in no time you're involved with "If," a perfect song for jamming along. "S.M.F." (Sick Mother F*cker) is an excellent slow blues jam, while "Look My Way," the only song with lyrics, is a more upbeat and lighthearted approach to the blues with a ripping guitar solo to remind you who you're listening to. Whether you want to put on some tunes and chill for a while, or you want to jam with some great music, Joe Satriani is a truly remarkable album. Not Joe's usual stuff, but it's good all the same. In fact, Joe Satriani proves that Joe has no "usual stuff" - he continually reinvents himself with each recording.

Star Rating (Out of 5): *****


Billboard (10/28/95)
Gifted instrumentalist Joe Satriani joins veteran British producer Glyn Johns and a crack cast that includes Eric Clapton sideman Andy Fairweather-Low and session mavens Nathan East and Manu Katche. Although Satriani--like most players of his caliber--has a tendency to slip into indulgent solos, he shows considerable restraint and soulfulness on such tunes as Slow Down Blues and playful vocal number Look My Way. Down-to-earth sound and improvisational telepathy between the band members help to raise album above the level of most guitar-idol instrumental records.

Entertainment Weekly (10/13/95)
...this is Satriani's gutsiest and most plainspoken effort yet, echoing Jeff Beck and Jimi Hendrix, but with his own inimitable urgency. His roots are showing, in the best way.

Musician (1/96)
...a straight-ahead instrumental rock album....There's a real bite to much of this music, and Satriani's got a leaner tone to match. The glossy, airbrushed leads...are largely gone; in the few spots where they do appear...they take on a new air of menace...

A review by critic Johnny Black ( Emap Consumer Magazines Limited. For personal use only.)
Maybe it's down to veteran producer Glyn Johns's guiding hand, maybe it's the company of no-nonsense sidemen such as Andy Fairweather-Low. Manu Khatche and Nathan East, or maybe Joe Satriani has just finally discovered self-restraint but, whatever the reason, this is an artefact brimming with unexpected delights. From the opening Cool No9, Joe Satriani seems to be paying homage to an earlier era where melody took precedence over technique. Thus, by harnessing his dextrous digits to an exploration of the limitations of Dick Dale, Chuck Berry, Link Wray and all their progeny, through Randy California, Eric Clapton, Carlos Santana, Jeff Beck et al. Joe Satriani gives himself solid structural boundaries to work within, and only occasionally succumbs to the temptation to overplay his hands.

CMJ New Music Report
Joe Satriani's self-titled, seventh adventure bursts with a new level of maturity and musicianship. The first thing that hits you is a fat, warm guitar tone wallowing in an enormous groove, but the overall sound is different from the Satch we're used to. JOE SATRIANI is much more direct, more raw and more effective. It is as though he has been stripped of any superfluous trimmings and wayward effects so that the beautiful guitar within his soul can shine clearly. This lucidity reveals a gifted and consistent songwriter, sublimely talented guitarist, versatile improviser and a kickin' band--strengths that allow Satriani to express himself ever so eloquently, evoking emotions on a universal level. The opener, "Cool #9," is a funky, polyrhythmic scorcher on which Satriani grows a stratospheric guitar solo out of a few well-placed succinct phrases. That's just the first of the burning rock to be found on JOE SATRIANI, most of it propelled by the tremendous drumming of Manu Katche. Satriani also pours much of his ferocious red energy into the blues. There are four genuine blues offerings here, showcasing Joe on slide guitar, Joe on harp, Joe on dobro and Joe on vocals. Occasionally adding the touch of rhythm guitar master Andy Fairweather Low, Satriani plays the blues with spine-warming emotion, milking buckets of feeling out of his strings to feed sweet melodies.

Q Magazine (12/95)
"...a straight-ahead instrumental rock album....There's a real bite to much of this music, and Satriani's got a leaner tone to match. The glossy, airbrushed leads...are largely gone; in the few spots where they do appear...they take on a new air of menace..."

Some Consumer Reviews:
~Unexpected, and astoundingly good. More 'bluesy' than any of his previous albums, I got the distinct impression Satch had been listening to Clapton's "From the Cradle" before recording this. I haven't been this impressed with his virtuosity since the original, "Surfing with the Alien." If you like Joe, or blues, try this one. If (like me) you like both, then you can't afford to pass this up.

~If you were expecting a blasting array of bi-dextral tapping, pinched harmonics and wild whammy bar hysteria, this is not the album you want to get. Satriani unleashes himself from his usual jaw dropping virtuosity and he lets the feeling of the music take over. The album is dominated by a bluesy feel, but strays occasionally into beautiful melodic tracks such as "Home" and the Eastern influenced "Morroccan sunset". Satriani's tone is once again top notch, and his inventive use of the wah wah pedal in his melodies adds flavour to the album. Perhaps this is not a Satriani album for all fans, but if you love good old blues, go and buy it. A wonderful recording.

~If you are expecting an ear-crushing super shred album, like I was, this is not for you. It takes a while to get used to, but it is really a pretty decent album, and some songs like "Cool #9" are right up there with some of Satch's best. Overall, I think the album is too slow, but it is cool that Satriani recorded it pretty much live and with minimal effects. Also, Peter Gabriel's drummer Manu Katche and Eric Clapton's backup guitarist Andy Fairweather-Low do a great job laying down the background.

~Joe shows that he can play & compose blues-like music in a great self style, without much technology. A must have.

ALBUM CREDITS:Personnel: Joe Satriani (vocals, guitar, dobro, slide guitar, lap steel, harmonica, bass); Andy Fairweather Low (guitar); Eric Valentine (piano, keyboards, bass, percussion); Nathan East, Matt Bissonette (bass); Manu Katche, Jeff Campitelli, Ethan Johns (drums); Greg Bissonette (percussion).

Engineers: Steve Holroyd (tracks 1-3, 5, 8-9, 12); Steve Holroyd, John Cuniberti, Eric Valentine (track 4); John Cuniberti, Eric Valentine (track 6); Steve Holroyd, John Cuniberti (tracks 7, 10); John Cuniberti (track 11). All songs written by Joe Satriani.