"My goal was to make a guitar-record that would be enjoyed by all". Joe Satriani took 107 hours to debut his talent in early 1985. There was a lot of hype based around Joe after this release, and not without reason. Although, he still seems to be reaching for his instrumental voice and finding the wrong notes, his power to perform made him into a well-known face.
The self-title track begins with phased acoustic strumming with a glassy tone and then the drums enter in with a very 80's feel. Anyone listening at the time will now be aware of Satriani's virtuosic skill; even for a debut his impressive guitar work was complimented with radio-friendly melodies and heavy riffs. It seems like a promising start, but The Snake
plays a funk-style bass-line with jazz percussion. On the first listen, it seems strange to think that there would be any solo, let a lone shred on this track, although it is pulled off well despite the already tiresome synthesisers on the album.
Until about two minutes into Rubina
, it seems like the few notes coming from Satriani would have to be strummed delicately and spaced so far apart, no one would be able to recognize him. That is until those two minutes are up, and one of the most impressive grandiose solos on the album plays for the next minute or so before the keyboards and simple drum pattern finish off the sombre ballad.
may be another fabricated piece from Not of This Earth
, but the lead work and riffs are unbelievable. The potential in Satriani is more than evident and a memorable sign of things to come. Next to Brother John
, there is some awe-inspiring guitar work without the need of any 80's makeshift instruments.
Then there is a bump in the road, and a number of colourless tracks take you to the end. That is with the exception of Hordes of Locusts
. With some very influential playing and inherent talent, the rest of the album looks slightly dull, next to Memories
. Until The Headless Horseman
, that is. With backdrop stomping and crass whistling, it's only natural for Satriani to take centre stage with no support from the keyboards this time. Joe Satriani plays a Spanish Fly
-style instrumental without rest for two minutes to end his debut.
It seemed like Joe Satriani was at times over-whelmed to show what he could do with six strings and 22 frets. Make no mistake, the tinny, almost robot drumming made it hard for me to believe there was in fact no drum machine at all.
To call this album a master-piece would be flattering, especially next to Satriani's second release Surfing with the Alien
, but by no means would I could it a dismal effort or a poor album. Not of This Earth
is more of a learning experience with a few uplifting tracks and a final product for die-hard fans who need to complete their collection.
, Hordes of Locusts
, Headless Horseman