"Inviolate" is guitar legend Steve Vai's tenth solo album, released on January 28, 2022.
This is Steve Vai's first since "Modern Primitive", released in 2016.
It's insane, but what you hear on this album is played by Steve Vai after recovering from finger surgery and after tearing a tendon in his shoulder. Do not believe? See for yourself what Steve does in "Knappsack" and you will realize that the man is simply a deadly and unstoppable machine.
The album features musicians at the highest level, each in his own field: Dave Rosenthal, Vinny Colaiuta, Terry Bozzio, Henrik Linder, and Bryan Beller.
Steve Vai noted that this is the first time he is recording an album when his band members and guest musicians are not together in the same studio. The situation forced him to work using the "file sharing" method. He sent excerpts to his band members and featured artists and they added their own instruments to them.
The virtuoso guitarist noted that he took advantage of the Covid-19 lockdowns to specialize in playing and experimenting with new and challenging techniques. The result can be heard in excerpts like "Candle Power", "Knappsack" and "Teeth of the Hydra" which Steve Vai claims was the most challenging.
Vai did not only played with new techniques, but also new equipment. Vai is known for in the developments and additions to his guitars, so this time it is a triple-necked guitar that he designed and on which he plays in the opening section "Teeth Of The Hydra".
We also do not remember seeing Vai playing with a semi-hollow body electric guitar, so it happens in the crazy piece "Little Pretty", where the weird chords and Vai's playing reminded us a bit of Robert Fripp's (and not just because of the type of guitar).
This album is diverse and full of musical styles. The Blues of "Greenish Blues", the Jazz influences in "Sandman Cloud Mist", the Prog-Metal of "Avalancha" and the crazy Fusion of "Apollo In Color".
Steve also noted that some of the tracks will sound to us like songs and not instrumental, well, indeed "Zeus In Chains" is one of them.
There is no doubt that guitarists and shred lovers will surely enjoy this album, but we bet that not only.