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Black Swans and Wormhole Wizards

Joe Satriani

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Album Review

Apparently his time in Chickenfoot made Joe Satriani want to get back to where he once belonged, so he goes retro on 2010’s Black Swans and Wormhole Wizards. About as far away from the heavy-footed party rock of Chickenfoot as possible, Black Swans is pure guitar prog, filled with compressed boogies, sci-fi synths, exotic flourishes, and all of Satch’s phasers and flangers in full-tilt overdrive. Often, it feels like a throwback to the glory days of Surfing with the Alien, but there are crucial differences and they're not subtle, either. First off, Satriani’s rock doesn’t rock so hard — when the tempo is a little faster or when a song is built on riffs, not melody, it’s for a change in color, so nothing on Black Swans plays aggressively. Furthermore, the album lingers instead of pushes, Satriani setting the tone with long legato melodies and solos with plenty of pauses. As such, it’s not a record that will tear your head off but rather a record to appreciate for its contours and textures, a mature work from one of the great rock guitarists.

Customer Reviews

Its ok

Joe really needs a better drummer. His music is great when the drummer can do more than just hi-hat and snare. I think Joe needs to explore other styles of music. These tracks sound alot like other songs he has done before. It's not new or fresh to me, and Im a huge fan but this cd I could have done without.

Same Satch, New Sound

This album is amazing. Even if your not a Satriani fan, you have to admit that he is a virtuoso, and this is the album to proove it. Truely versatile sound. Songs like "Littleworth Lane" and "The Golden Room" allow Satirani's diverse musical background to shine through. If you've ever wanted to hear someone use auto-tune on a guitar, "Wind in the Trees" is your pick.

Bottom line: Same rocking, catchy tuned Satch with some new-sounding gems!

This one isn't hate

It's sad that people don't respect what this album is about. It's not meant to be 'Happy-go-lucky Satriani', its supposed to be a remembrance of his mother who recently passed away. If you are wanting more of 'Surfing with the Alien' go listen to that song again. Musicians change, like any other human being, and their music changes with them, its unreasonable to expect them to stay the same. Keep making records that are meaningful to you Joe, and I'll keep listening.


Born: July 15, 1956 in Westbury, NY

Genre: Rock

Years Active: '70s, '80s, '90s, '00s, '10s

Along with teaching some of the top rock guitar players of the '80s and '90s, Joe Satriani is one of the most technically accomplished and widely respected guitarists to emerge in recent times. Born on July 15, 1956, in Westbury, New York, and raised in the nearby town of Carle Place, Satriani — inspired by guitar legend Jimi Hendrix — picked up the guitar at the age of 14 (although he was initially more interested in the drums). Quickly learning the instrument, Satriani began teaching...
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