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Joe Satriani: Satriani Live!

35 customer reviews

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(Oct 31, 2006)
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Editorial Reviews

Product Description

Joe Satriani is the guitar. Plain and simple. No one else has ever been able to play with such pizzazz, such fluidity, such timelessness. That's not to say there aren't others out there who are accomplished, they just can't even come close to achieving the magic that Joe Satriani performs as soon as his fingers mesh with the strings. "Satriani LIVE!", the double CD or DVD, is packed full live footage shot at the end of the Super Colossal tour and plenty of bonus material for the ultimate Satriani fan.

This two-disc offering from hard rock guitarist Joe Satriani encompasses a two-hour concert, a 45-minute documentary with plenty of additional live footage, and various other bonus material that includes still more playing. Put it all together and Satriani Live! offers a good three hours' worth of fast and furious fretwork--in other words, a whole lotta notes (hard to say how many, exactly; like the size of the universe or the number of atoms in the human body, it's a figure that's difficult to calculate and nigh on impossible for the finite mind to fathom). Of course, this is exactly what the guitar freaks who sell out Joe's shows want, especially since his performances are uncluttered by any pesky vocals or lyrics. Concentrating primarily on his 2006 CD Super Colossal, "Satch" unveils his usual bag of virtuoso tricks and techniques here, using harmonics, fret hammering, his whammy bar, various pedal effects, and such to wow the choir he's preaching to. That's all well and good; despite his obvious and enormous debt to predecessors like Jimi Hendrix (his music publishing company is called "Strange Beautiful," taken from the Hendrix classic "Third Stone from the Sun") and Jeff Beck, Satriani is as accomplished as any of the other guitar gods of his generation, with the possible exception of Edward Van Halen. But as skilled as he may be, the guy's songwriting is nothing to pop a string over. Simply put, riffs are not melodies and grooves are not songs, so anyone whose interests go beyond guitar pyrotechnics will have a hard time paying attention for the duration (and even then, the hard-core guitar dudes who comprise most of his audience will complain that there's insufficient focus on Satriani's hands and frets). Truth is, "Flying in a Blue Dream," the documentary of Satriani's 2005 tour of India, is arguably the most entertaining thing here; watching and hearing a stadium full of young Indian men singing along to his every note is a genuine trip. --Sam Graham

Special Features


Product Details

  • Format: Multiple Formats, Color, NTSC
  • Language: English
  • Region: Region 1 (U.S. and Canada only. Read more about DVD formats.)
  • Aspect Ratio: 1.33:1
  • Number of discs: 1
  • Rated: NR (Not Rated)
  • Studio: Red Int / Red Ink
  • DVD Release Date: October 31, 2006
  • Average Customer Review: 4.3 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (35 customer reviews)
  • ASIN: B000IFQLK0
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #117,778 in Movies & TV (See Top 100 in Movies & TV)

Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

23 of 24 people found the following review helpful By Peter M. Roche on November 7, 2006
Format: DVD
This Satriani live video event is less glitzy than "Live in San Francisco" from 2000. The Anaheim stage is sparse, not as many lights, and Joe and the guys just get down to business, which in this case involves performing most of the material from the 2006 album "Super Colossal," with only five older tunes thrown in for variety (Blue Dream, Cool #9, Summer Song, Potato Head, Extremist). The technique is stellar as always--you can count on that from Joe. But they must have used between eight and twelve cameras to film this concert, because they jump cut between them constantly. You don't stay with a single camera angle for any longer than three seconds, so it gets annoying. I'd have filmed a more "guitar fan" friendly video with just a single hand-held DVD cam. The whole idea should be to make Joe and his fingers the main attraction. Joe is certainly the focal point here, but the trouble is one second you're looking at him from overhead, the next you're looking at him from a distance, the next you're looking at him several feet away from the get the idea. You're not gonna pick up a lot of Joe's guitar technique by studying this. It's just too jumpy, which is an insult to fans of instrumental rock, who by definition have shown over the years that we're not ADHD kids hooked on stutter-shot MTV production values. For God's sake, next time just take a camera--ONE camera--and train it on Joe for a while without moving. The sound is good here, but you'll get dizzy watching it. The clamshell DVD case should come with dramamine tablets! Good bonus features, though. A lot of content on this two DVD set for the price.
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14 of 14 people found the following review helpful By Mariusar on November 7, 2006
Format: DVD
Previous reviews make the point about the subpar camera work quite clear - 'nuff said.

I've been a Satch fanantic for 20 years now[!!]. I have everything he's ever done and while I especially love his work in the late '80's with Stu Hamm and Rod Morgenstern [what I call Joe's "Golden Age" - check out the live B-side of the "Dreaming #11" EP], I love everything Joe puts out. But I must admit that this new double-DVD set is really exceptional, primarily because IMHO we finally get to see and hear Joe stretch out musically.

While "Live In SF" was fantastic, at times I felt it was a bit too clean and polished, almost antisceptic-feeling, and that the song renditions were, for the most part, too-perfect perfomances of the studio tracks. Not a whole lot of musical improvisation overall. But this new LIVE! DVD really caught Joe and company extending themselves, especially on some of the older stuff.

I also feel the same as others did about having too many versions of Satch-standards like "Flying...", "Always...", and "Summer Song", but on this DVD, all the oldies have been stretched out Joe breathes new life on everything. Go and listen to "Circles", the extended ending improv on "Always...", the swinging, jazzy feel of "Cool#9", the exceptionally moody intro to "Flying..." - all the old stuff simply rocks and feels so incredibly fresh because Joe's pushed things around, changed things up and flexes those fingers.

As for the Super Colossal heavy set-list. Overall, I very much like the new studio CD [though for me too, Crystal Planet is still one of my favorites], but yes, I too would have preferred to have a better mix of tracks from throughout the Satch catalog. You can't please everyone!
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5 of 5 people found the following review helpful By Dcee3 on November 4, 2006
Format: DVD Verified Purchase
Just a note: this is not Eric Johnson's band backing Joe. Jeff Campitelli (drums), Galen Henson (Guitar) are Joe's regular bandmates. Dave LaRue (amazing bass player) is in Stu Hamm's spot as bass player.

If you like the "Satriani -Live in San Francisco" dvd you will like this dvd as well. It is true about the cameramen -most cameramen unfortunately are not guitarists. We guitarists know when the solo is coming and are expecting that the camera will be glued to Joe's fingers! For myself I would never want the camera anywhere else but on Joe. So the way to do it would be having multiple camera angles with one camera on Joe at all times (a guitarist speaking).It would be nice if the cameramen were Joe Satriani fans and were familiar with his work. But this still is a great dvd and camerwork was not a distraction to me. Now my opinion could be slanted because I've seen "Cream - Live at the Albert Hall 1968"(on VHS)! I screamed with frustation when I first saw this concert on VHS! While Clapton was doing an amazing solo the cameraman was filming Jack Bruce's head!!! This man should be located and shot(and if he is already dead lets dig his bones up and burn them)! :-) Another example is the filming of the recently released "Blind Faith Live". We see more of the crowd than we do the band, such a shame.
Conclusion: don't miss this one if you are a Joe Satriani fan.
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10 of 12 people found the following review helpful By The Camera Eye on November 8, 2006
Format: DVD
** Copy of review of the CD version of this DVD **

I've been a Satriani fan since his first album, and especially after the release of Surfing with the Alien. My one gripe was how static and simple the support parts in his compositions were, specifically, the drums and bass. More recently I've gained a greater appreciation of why this was so. First to highlight his incomparable ability to write an amazing guitar melody, and second (and more obviously) to highlight his amazing technical virtuosity. Nevertheless, this lacking in the support areas has been addressed continually over the years, for example, with the frequent use of the unbelievable Stuart Hamm on bass.

This live CD & DVD set is by far the most dramatic step forward in the area of support, and it is what makes this a definitive Satriani live CD/DVD. Specifically, the extended versions, the jam-outs (or jam-ins), which include some very interesting stretching on Joe's part also, highlight the dynamic nature of this big step.

In recent years, Joe has used the reliable backing of bassist Matt Bissonette & Satriani stalwart drummer Jeff Campitelli. And while Bissonette is a decent and very reliable musician, he is not by any means a mind-boggling technical virtuoso, as is the aforementioned Stuart Hamm. Likewise, Campitelli had never really pressed any buttons for me as a drummer, as my leanings in that area tend to be toward the likes of guys such as Neil Peart, Vinnie Colaiuta, Terry Bozzio, etal. I have been to many G3 shows, and the energy level always seemed to be higher when Steve Vai was out with his amazing band (particularly with the likes of Billy Sheehan on bass in recent years, and Tony MacAlpine on Second Lead Guitar and Keyboards).
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Topic From this Discussion
2 disc?
Yes it is a 2-disc item... Maybe an error, but it did say that it has 2 DVDs on the editorial review...
Dec 18, 2006 by J. C. |  See all 2 posts
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