Joe Satriani: Shockwave Supernova

15th studio album of guitar wizardry from Satch.

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His dizzying fretboard frolics might be supersonic and other-worldly, but Satriani’s work ethic is utterly grounded (averaging, as he has, an album every other year since the 80s).

He’s dovetailed into electronica and other experiments, but the last few years have been all about rocksteady ‘Satch-rock’ – i.e. instrumental mastery centred on the blues, via Mars.

True to recent form, Shockwave Supernova is an unwavering, slick slice of Satriani. It’s not his most magical oeuvre, but multiple listens uproot attractive depths.

Keep On Movin’ calls to mind the emotional end of 1992’s The Extremist; In My Pocket is a deliciously fun, sassy piece of bluesy rock’n’roll; and the warming, loveable likes of San Francisco Blue capture the full kaleidoscope of Satch’s musical affections. Swinging blues, 70s rock’n’roll, jazz, spacey jinks…he plays it all, usually at once.

Whatever your thoughts on instrumental necromancers, you can’t deny that it’s pretty bloody impressive./o:p

Polly Glass
Features Editor, Classic Rock

Polly is features editor at Classic Rock magazine, where she writes and commissions regular pieces and longer reads (including new band coverage), and has interviewed rock's biggest and newest names. She also contributes to Louder, Prog and Metal Hammer and talks about songs on the 20 Minute Club podcast. Elsewhere she's had work published in The Musician, delicious. magazine (opens in new tab) and others, and written biographies for various album campaigns. In a previous life as a women's magazine junior she interviewed Tracey Emin and Lily James – and wangled Rival Sons into the arts pages. In her spare time she writes fiction and cooks.