Thursday, October 30, 2003

G3 Live 2003: buzzing ears

That's what I took away from the G3 (Satriani, Vai, Malmsteen) concert at the Tabernacle (my first time there) yesterday. Malmsteen was fast, furious, ferocious and over-showy. Vai's act was the most balanced and enjoyable. When Satch came on, the sound levels hit unpleasant highs -- had they even appointed some for sound management?? Although it was great to hear Satch do his hits, the high noise level cast a level of uniform fuzziness to the proceedings. And when the much-awaited jam came up, things just got worse. Recognizing Voodoo Chile (the second Hendrix cover that evening: Malmsteen did Red House in his section), Little Wing and Neil Young's Keep on Rocking in the Free World didn't help matters much. Except for Vai, none could lay claim to showmanship. Which may or may not have mattered too much, but Malmsteen's antics (had he consciously transformed into a bad satire of an 80s guitar player?) did get a bit overdone. To recap what I remember: Yngwie did Evil Eye, Red House (at least it sounded like it!), Baroque and Roll, Concerto Suite. Vai began with a three-necked guitar, and along with lots of electro-sonic excursions, showcased a great performance of Whispering a Prayer. Vai also had the tightest band with everyone chipping in, although my pick for a good drumkit would be the one in Satch's section. What did Satch play? Let's see: Satch Boogie, Cool #9, Mystical Potato Head Groove Thing, Summer Song. Maybe a forgot a couple. While I am glad I didn't miss the event, I just wish my ears would quit ringing.

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