LOST AND FOUND GUITAR  TREASURES …Steve Vai: Modern  Primitive

If you’re a guitar fan, Steve Vai is probably one of your 6 slinger heroes. If so, this 2 cd set is going to be on your “must have” list. It comprises the 25th Anniversary Edition of Vai’s classic guitar shredder of an album Passion and Warfare. The other disc, in a completely different musical vein, is the legendary lost-but-found Modern Primitive, which is as exciting as it is revelatory.

Recorded between the initial 1984 Flex-Able and the 1990 Passion and Warfare, Modern Primitive has Vai playing “Everything Else” on tracks assisted by drums by Chris Fazier or Jeremy Colson, bass by Stu Hamm and various vocalists. The music ranges from swinging and feisty jazz like “Bop!” to wild and wooley Fender Benders such as “Dark Matter” and “Upanishads.” Some of the pieces such as “The Lost Chord” show Vai’s tutelage from Frank Zappa, as mixtures of adventurous rock, jazz and sardonic humor are mixed ingeniously . This is a real keeper.

The iconic Passion and Warfare is solidified Vai’s  place on Guitar Mount Rushmore. While Vai still does much of the instrumental work, the music has more of a “band” feel with Chris Frazier-Tris Imboden/dr, Sturrt Hamm/b, Bob Harris-David Rosenthal-Pia Vai/key and vocalist Jamie Firlotte. Vai’s sense of humor shines forth on a series of tunes beginning with “The Audience Is Listening” which sounds like something from a Zappa album, while majestic ballads “For The Love Of God” and “Blue Powder” spotlight Vai’s wide range of textures. But above all, this guy knew how to rock, and you get plenty of that as on
Would Love To” and “Liberty” which rocks the swing, and swings the rock. This is a pair to share!


Sony Legacy


Leave a Reply