Steve Vai
The Story of Light

1. The Story of Light
2. Velroum
3. John the Revelator
4. Book of the Seven Seals
5. Creamsicle Sunset
6. Gravity Storm
7. Mullach a’tSí
8. The Moon and I
9. Weeping China Doll
10. Racing the World
11. No More Amsterdam
12. Sunshine Electric Raindrops

Steve Vai - guitar & vocals (tracks 8, 11)
Dave Weiner - guitar
Philip Bynoe - bass
Jeremy Colson - drums
Deborah Henson-Conant - harp
Beverly McClellan - vocals (track 3 and 4)
Aimee Mann - vocals (track 11)

Flex-Able (1984)
Passion and Warfare (1990)
Sex and Religion (1993)
Fire Garden (1996)
The Ultra Zone (1999)
Real Illusions: Reflections (2005)


Bernie Grundman - mastering

Released 5/9-2012
Reviewed 19/9-2012


Alcatrazz seems to be a band where guitarists with delusions of grandeur went through, Yngwie Malmsteen left the place to Steve Vai both of whom nowadays are full of themselves and believes themselves to be God’s gift to guitar playing. A reality check says that they are not, not even close. This Vai are now releasing his new album however, it is called The Story of Light and follows the same conceptual story as the predecessor Real Illusions: Reflections which was released in 2005. So, seven long years has passed since that and maybe this time has been used for Vai to contemplate over how a good album is made, like the one he was part of with Alcatrazz because just like fellow guitar masturbator Malmsteen he was part of his best release with said band which of course hasn’t done anything since their last release in 1986. So, will we see a new Steve or is it just more of the same?

The latter is the correct answer, nothing seems to have happened over these seven years. Maybe he spent them thinking over how he would appear to be better a guitarist than he is. The songs are built around complex guitar playing, the fast fingers of Steve is what dictates the directions of this album and these directions are many as it seems as there is no red line going through the album and the songs feels a bit disconnected from one another, sometimes even in parts of the songs which feels add odds with one another. The production is decent but I was expecting a better sound considering that this guy is supposed to be supremely skilled as a musician. But sure he does know how to handle a guitar, there is no doubt about that. This album is besides being overly complicated also very long with a playing time of about 58 days and somewhere around 1200 tracks.

Do you like to sit around watching paint dry on a wooden plank? then this album is for you because it really is that boring. There is no real flow through the album, everything feels chopped up like the body of a poor samurai after a sword fight with a more skilled samurai. You think there is something good coming just to be interrupted by some masturbation and all is lost and you just want to throw up and flush the album down the toilet but you can’t as it was distributed digitally meaning you have nothing to flush down. Good for creating power naps though. Fortunately there is vocals on this album because had it only been dedicated to Vai’s guitar playing it would have probably been worse than getting cancer in the right ear just inside the eardrum where the tumour is applying pressure to the drum making your ear hurt. He has some female singers to complete his poor singing, the track No More Amsterdam is actually great where he sings with Aimee Mann and leaves no room for his usual annoying stuff.

Vai may be a brilliant guitar player and all of that but as a composed he leaves a lot to be desired, he is actually quite bad. This album has nothing to grab you or interest you, it is just boring and just like the case is with most instrumental rock albums, it just has no dynamics and no flow just a lot of instrumental showing off which is not fun to hear.

After listening about ten times to this album I am left with a question: why? Why do this album at all? The second album I will review today has none of the guitar playing show off and not really a good vocalist either but it is one hell of a lot better album than this disc of boredom.




Label: Favoured Nations Records
Three similar bands: Alcatrazz/Zappa/Joe Satriani
Rating: HHHHHHH (3/7)
Reviewer: Daniel Källmalm

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