Earlier this month, guitar virtuoso Joe Satriani announced his 18th studio album, Shapeshifting. It was the latest announcement in a big year that includes the guitarist’s induction into the Metal Hall of Fame and a world tour.
Thursday, Satriani announced more details on the album, his latest in a prolific run that includes 2018’s What Happens Next, a soul album that included collaborations with drummer Chad Smith and Deep Purple bassist Glenn Hughes. Shapeshifting will come out on April 10th, and was co-produced by Satriani and Jim Scott (Foo Fighters, Red Hot Chili Peppers) and mastered by John Cuniberti. Satriani’s band includes veteran drummer Kenny Aronoff, bassist Chris Chaney (Jane’s Addiction) and keyboardist Eric Caudieux.
Shapeshifting appears to be a more adventurous than his stripped-down previous release. The first single, “Nineteen Eighty” channels Satriani’s earliest days in music, when he was playing with his first group, the power-pop trio the Squares, in Berkeley, California, a time when they “dialed back the guitar solos and histrionics to try to create a cooler new wave vibe,” Satriani said in a statement.
The single is full of finger-tapping, but also melody; Satriani used an Eddie Van Halen signature phaser pedal as a tribute to his guitar hero: “I’ve always been a huge fan of Eddie Van Halen,” Satriani says. “In my mind, he just crystallized that era. The late Seventies and early Eighties, he kind of saved rock guitar. So that’s what I would have been doing.”
The Shapeshifting Tracklist
2. Big Distortion
3. All For Love
4. Ali Farka, Dick Dale, an Alien and Me
6. Perfect Dust
7. Nineteen Eighty
8. All My Friends Are Here
9. Spirits, Ghosts and Outlaws
10. Falling Stars
12. Here the Blue River
13. Yesterday’s Yesterday