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Chickenfoot: Chickenfoot (Deluxe CD/DVD)

It's pretty safe to say that if you still think Chickenfoot is an affliction that involves calling out the vet, then you have either been living in a darkened room with no door, windows, or internet connection for the last year, or you've stumbled onto this review by complete accident and are looking for a bizarre witch doctor cure for bird flu!

As many things in life do, the band Chickenfoot came together by accident when ex Van Halen band mates Sammy Hagar and Michael Anthony invited Red Hot Chilli Peppers drummer Chad Smith to come and jam with them during one of their regular get togethers at Hagar's club. The trio realised that the sound they created was too special to leave as a one off, however with Sammy wanting to concentrate on his vocals for the project, they needed a guitarist. And what a guitarist! Joe Satriani is rightly regarded as one the most innovative, grooving, riff monsters that has ever picked up a six string!

Now it's not the first time that four hugely talented musicians with a top notch pedigree have combined to create a "supergroup" and truth be told it's not a blueprint that has guaranteed success before. In this case however the sound that Chickenfoot have come up with genuinely rivals anything that any of the four members have been involved in before. Amazingly there's little compromise on each of their parts either. Chad funks and grooves like he would in his day job, but seems to relish the chance to sometimes just put his head down and rock! While Anthony puts in possibly his strongest performance on the bass and most definitely as a backup singer to the amazing anti-aging Hagar who squeals, screams and hollers his way through the twelve tracks on show. Satriani however is for me the real stand out. I've always been a huge fan of his playing and was a little concerned that he might feel the need to reign in his fiery attack to fit into a band situation. How wrong I was. Just listen to "Turning Left" to discover that every quirky wail, off the wall riff and fret burning shred has been brought to the table, however backed by the stunning array of talent around him all his flicks and tricks are hammered into biting, ferocious rock songs.

In fact everywhere you turn there are examples of pulsating, driving, good old fashioned hard rock that manage to sound both current and classic at the same time. Whether it's the grooving blues of "Sexy Little Thing", the urgent insistent "Avenida Revolution" or the light and shade of "Get It Up" the quality never slips below stunning. Neither Hagar nor Satriani have shied away from slower more heartfelt tracks in their past and it's no surprise that their coming together has resulted in another heart wrenching, beautiful slow rocker in the shape of the quite wonderful "Learning To Fall".

Now with the huge and deserved furore surrounding the initial release of this album, the question has to be, what extras are included in this "deluxe" 2 disc version? Well for starters there's the acoustic, bluesy "Bitten By The Wolf" which was previously only available on the download and vinyl version of the album. However more impressively there is a fantastically produced DVD that sees the band introduce the "12 Days Of 'Foot" with some humorous, yet interesting interviews that intersect live and video run throughs of all the songs from the album. This isn't a quickly thrown together cash in, but a DVD that would, if it was slightly longer, be worth a standalone release. Obviously as described above, the music is stellar, however the live footage is brilliantly shot and hammers home just how much fun these guys are having playing together and it's a joy to watch. Equally importantly its high production values both visually and aurally mean that it is a release that stands up well to repeated views without ever becoming boring.

Basically one of the best albums of the year just got better!

Track Listing
1 Avenida Revolution
2 Soap On A Rope
3 Sexy Little Thing
4 Oh Yeah
5 Runnin' Out
6 Get It Up
7 Down The Drain
8 My Kinda Girl
9 Learning To Fall
10 Turnin' Left
11 Future In The Past
12 Bitten By The Wolf

Added: November 25th 2009
Reviewer: Steven Reid
Related Link: Chickenfoot online
Hits: 1310
Language: english

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