Guitar World's top ten shred Albums of all time

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#1 Posted by AxeStrangler (1889 posts) -

1) Rising Force Yngwie Malmsteen I'm laying it on the line right now: Yngwie J. Malmsteen was, is, and always will be the greatest shredder of all time. Hell, he invented the genre with his 1985 debut. The standout track "Far Beyond the Sun" was far beyond what any guitar player had ever imagined possible.

2) Live: Extreme Volume Racer X In the mood for a steaming bowl of notemeal? Check out this 1988 live release from shred poster boys Paul Gilbert and Bruce Bouillet. The best part? There was no pretense of cultural significance with these guys; Racer X was simply speed for the sake of speed.

3) Mind's Eye Vinnie Moore Only one year after Yngwie unleashed his fury on U.S. shores, Vinnie Moore responded with the "Oh yeah? Check this out" release Mind's Eye. On "Daydream," Moore demonstrates his grasp of classical themes and motifs; then, on "The Journey," he shows he can do it with "feel."

4) Edge of Insanity Tony MacAlpine The album that launched Mike Varney's Shrapnel Records, Edge of Insanity shows off Tony MacAlpine's fearsome shred chops not only on the six-string ("Quarter to Midnight") but also on the ivories ("Chopin, Prelude 16, Opus 28").

5) Passion and Warfare Steve Vai Remember the cute MTV video for Vai's "The Audience Is Listening"? What school-age guitar player didn't want to live out that fantasy? Melodic, flashy, humorous, and filled with hooks, Passion and Warfare is the bar by which all other instrumental guitar albums are measured.

6) Surfing With the Alien Joe Satriani Just how badass is Joe Satriani? Well, his list of students includes Steve Vai. And "Satch Boogie" was (and still is) the only shred tune that FM radio would touch. But the real highlight of this release is Side 2, which contains the gemini-like clean and distorted tones of "Circles" and "Lords of Karma," as well as the clean-toned two-handed tapfest "Midnight" and the hypnotic "Echo."

7) Powers of Ten Shawn Lane From his debut, the now out-of-print Powers of Ten, to his fusion work on Tri-Tone Fascination, the late Shawn Lane exhibited a tremendous sense of melody, even while melting picks with his incendiary technique. If Eric Johnson were a pure shredder, this is what he might sound like.

8- Michael Lee Firkins Michael Lee Firkins A unique shredder, Firkins employed hybrid picking, subtle whammy wobbling, and country-flavored intervallic leaps to craft some surprisingly listenable tunes.

9) Speed Metal Symphony Cacophony Speed Metal Symphony, a mighty opus featuring first-chair guitar virtuosos Marty Friedman and Jason Becker, uses "speed metal" rhythm beds and shifting time signatures to help break up the cacophonous onslaught of all-out shred.

10) Greg Howe Greg Howe A funk-savvy speedster, Greg Howe injected the shred scene with some much-needed shake and soul. The funkdafied "Kick It All Over" kicks off the festivities, and the following track, "The Pepper Shake," offers a spicy display of Howe's legato and alternate-picking chops.

What do you guys think?

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#2 Posted by Toriko42 (27562 posts) -
I haven't heard of any of these albums
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#3 Posted by battlefront23 (12625 posts) -
I haven't heard of any of these albumsToriko42
Same.
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#4 Posted by Bloodaxe726 (7903 posts) -

Zero Order Phase by Jeff Loomis should be included on that list, amazing album.

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#5 Posted by AxeStrangler (1889 posts) -
I haven't heard of any of these albumsToriko42
there more guitar oriented albums, lots of instrumental music, a lot of which was released in the 80s and early 90s, so I can understand why non guitarists haven't heard of any of these albums.
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#6 Posted by bebopoutlaw3gun (5584 posts) -

I haven't heard of any of these albumsToriko42

Can't say I have either.

And seriously, no Dick Dale? He's the original!

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#7 Posted by AxeStrangler (1889 posts) -

Zero Order Phase by Jeff Loomis should be included on that list, amazing album.

Bloodaxe726
nah man, It's great but not Jaw Dropping, I'd rather listen to Jason Becker's Perpetual Burn.
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#8 Posted by Bloodaxe726 (7903 posts) -

[QUOTE="Bloodaxe726"]

Zero Order Phase by Jeff Loomis should be included on that list, amazing album.

AxeStrangler

nah man, It's great but not Jaw Dropping, I'd rather listen to Jason Becker's Perpetual Burn.

I most certainly find it jaw dropping, but I also have a preference towards the heavier style rather than the classical style of the virtuosos.

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#9 Posted by AxeStrangler (1889 posts) -

[QUOTE="AxeStrangler"][QUOTE="Bloodaxe726"]

Zero Order Phase by Jeff Loomis should be included on that list, amazing album.

Bloodaxe726

nah man, It's great but not Jaw Dropping, I'd rather listen to Jason Becker's Perpetual Burn.

I most certainly find it jaw dropping, but I also have a preference towards the heavier style rather than the classical style of the virtuosos.

yeah, but to me, Jeff Loomis' album is nothing new, just some shredding, he's much better in a band situation imo.
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#10 Posted by AxeStrangler (1889 posts) -
[QUOTE="Toriko42"]I haven't heard of any of these albumsbattlefront23
Same.

If your a guitarist, I suggest you listen to at least one of these albums.
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#11 Posted by Bloodaxe726 (7903 posts) -

[QUOTE="Bloodaxe726"]

[QUOTE="AxeStrangler"] nah man, It's great but not Jaw Dropping, I'd rather listen to Jason Becker's Perpetual Burn.AxeStrangler

I most certainly find it jaw dropping, but I also have a preference towards the heavier style rather than the classical style of the virtuosos.

yeah, but to me, Jeff Loomis' album is nothing new, just some shredding, he's much better in a band situation imo.

That's true, I definitely prefer his guitar with Warrel Dane's voice.

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#12 Posted by Saturos3091 (14938 posts) -

I'm honestly surprised to see Edge of Insanity so high on the list. :o

The others (especially Yngwie at #1) all seem to be more or less in their correct positions.

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#13 Posted by AxeStrangler (1889 posts) -

I'm honestly surprised to see Edge of Insanity so high on the list. :o

The others (especially Yngwie at #1) all seem to be more or less in their correct positions.

Saturos3091

Yeah me too, actually I didn't even expect Tony MacAlpine to make it in the list, hell, I'm surprised Shawn Lane made the list considering it's Guitar World magazine, who generally suck at list.

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#14 Posted by cyberdarkkid (16777 posts) -
Great list.
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#15 Posted by xTheExploited (12094 posts) -
Where's The Ramones? No one was a better guitar player then Johnny Ramone. :P
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#16 Posted by airg6 (4390 posts) -
No Michael Angelo Batio? The list is an epic fail. I cant believe No Boundaries is not on that list.
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#17 Posted by AxeStrangler (1889 posts) -

Where's The Ramones? No one was a better guitar player then Johnny Ramone. :PxTheExploited
I know what you mean, playing all those chords using only down strokes must have required mastery of the instrument :P.

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#18 Posted by AxeStrangler (1889 posts) -
No Michael Angelo Batio? The list is an epic fail. I cant believe No Boundaries is not on that list.airg6
No Boundaries really isn't that great, especially compared to the albums in the list.
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#19 Posted by cyberdarkkid (16777 posts) -
[QUOTE="Bloodaxe726"]

[QUOTE="AxeStrangler"] nah man, It's great but not Jaw Dropping, I'd rather listen to Jason Becker's Perpetual Burn.AxeStrangler

I most certainly find it jaw dropping, but I also have a preference towards the heavier style rather than the classical style of the virtuosos.

yeah, but to me, Jeff Loomis' album is nothing new, just some shredding, he's much better in a band situation imo.

I find Jeff Loomis' album better than many of Nevermore's work, and it's not just some shredding, the album is very melodic and the riffs are awesome too. Don't know if it should be up there though.
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#20 Posted by airg6 (4390 posts) -
[QUOTE="airg6"]No Michael Angelo Batio? The list is an epic fail. I cant believe No Boundaries is not on that list.AxeStrangler
No Boundaries really isn't that great, especially compared to the albums in the list.

I beg to differ. Plus as a guitarist in general, Michael Angelo can shred miles past these guys. Except maybe Shawn Lane.Plus Yngwie Malmsteen is so damn overrated.R.I.P. Shawn.
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#21 Posted by AxeStrangler (1889 posts) -

[QUOTE="AxeStrangler"][QUOTE="Bloodaxe726"]

I most certainly find it jaw dropping, but I also have a preference towards the heavier style rather than the classical style of the virtuosos.

cyberdarkkid

yeah, but to me, Jeff Loomis' album is nothing new, just some shredding, he's much better in a band situation imo.

I find Jeff Loomis' album better than many of Nevermore's work, and it's not just some shredding, the album is very melodic and the riffs are awesome too. Don't know if it should be up there though.

it's melodic, but nothing new for me, either way, I'm not really into NeoClassical shred that much anymore, I sorta outgrew it. But I guess you can say Jeff Loomis is introducing shred to a younger generation of guitarists.

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#22 Posted by AxeStrangler (1889 posts) -
[QUOTE="AxeStrangler"][QUOTE="airg6"]No Michael Angelo Batio? The list is an epic fail. I cant believe No Boundaries is not on that list.airg6
No Boundaries really isn't that great, especially compared to the albums in the list.

I beg to differ. Plus as a guitarist in general, Michael Angelo can shred miles past these guys. Except maybe Shawn Lane.Plus Yngwie Malmsteen is so damn overrated.R.I.P. Shawn.

I could care less how many notes Michael Angelo can play, his phrasing in general seems rather generic compared to someone like Greg Howe, who has a really great sense of note choice, but then again, I'm more inclined to listen to Fusion guitarist nowadays, as it offers more variety of technique and sound imo.
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#23 Posted by cyberdarkkid (16777 posts) -

[QUOTE="cyberdarkkid"][QUOTE="AxeStrangler"] yeah, but to me, Jeff Loomis' album is nothing new, just some shredding, he's much better in a band situation imo.AxeStrangler

I find Jeff Loomis' album better than many of Nevermore's work, and it's not just some shredding, the album is very melodic and the riffs are awesome too. Don't know if it should be up there though.

it's melodic, but nothing new for me, either way, I'm not really into NeoClassical shred that much anymore, I sorta outgrew it. But I guess you can say Jeff Loomis is introducing shred to a younger generation of guitarists.

Then you would agree with me that Malmsteem shouldn't be number one...
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#24 Posted by AxeStrangler (1889 posts) -
[QUOTE="AxeStrangler"]

[QUOTE="cyberdarkkid"] I find Jeff Loomis' album better than many of Nevermore's work, and it's not just some shredding, the album is very melodic and the riffs are awesome too. Don't know if it should be up there though. cyberdarkkid

it's melodic, but nothing new for me, either way, I'm not really into NeoClassical shred that much anymore, I sorta outgrew it. But I guess you can say Jeff Loomis is introducing shred to a younger generation of guitarists.

Then you would agree with me that Malmsteem shouldn't be number one...

Yup, I wouldn't put him at number 1 personally, but his influence on shred guitar is evident in a lot of players, including Jeff Loomis.
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#25 Posted by cyberdarkkid (16777 posts) -

[QUOTE="cyberdarkkid"][QUOTE="AxeStrangler"] it's melodic, but nothing new for me, either way, I'm not really into NeoClassical shred that much anymore, I sorta outgrew it. But I guess you can say Jeff Loomis is introducing shred to a younger generation of guitarists.

AxeStrangler

Then you would agree with me that Malmsteem shouldn't be number one...

Yup, I wouldn't put him at number 1 personally, but his influence on shred guitar is evident in a lot of players, including Jeff Loomis.

Yea, also I'm glad to see Steve Vai at 5

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#26 Posted by Darth-Caedus (20756 posts) -
I'd remove Malmsteem...or at least bump him way down...I'd also like to so Zero Order Phase added...:P But its a pretty damn good list.
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#28 Posted by AxeStrangler (1889 posts) -

[QUOTE="AxeStrangler"][QUOTE="cyberdarkkid"] Then you would agree with me that Malmsteem shouldn't be number one...  cyberdarkkid

Yup, I wouldn't put him at number 1 personally, but his influence on shred guitar is evident in a lot of players, including Jeff Loomis.

Yea, also I'm glad to see Steve Vai at 5

Yup me too, Passion & Warfare was huge when it was released, it received quite a bit of promotion as well. I have an Interview that Steve Vai did with Howard Stern(downloaded it on the internet) around the time the album was released, funny stuff..

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#29 Posted by AxeStrangler (1889 posts) -

I'd remove Malmsteem...or at least bump him way down...I'd also like to so Zero Order Phase added...:P But its a pretty damn good list.Darth-Caedus
Hell, why don't we put all of the Nevermore albums while we're at it :P

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#30 Posted by Darth-Caedus (20756 posts) -

[QUOTE="Darth-Caedus"]I'd remove Malmsteem...or at least bump him way down...I'd also like to so Zero Order Phase added...:P But its a pretty damn good list.AxeStrangler

Hell, why don't we put all of the Nevermore albums while we're at it :P

Well now that you mention it...:o
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#31 Posted by cyberdarkkid (16777 posts) -

[QUOTE="cyberdarkkid"]

[QUOTE="AxeStrangler"] Yup, I wouldn't put him at number 1 personally, but his influence on shred guitar is evident in a lot of players, including Jeff Loomis.AxeStrangler

Yea, also I'm glad to see Steve Vai at 5

Yup me too, Passion & Warfare was huge when it was released, it received quite a bit of promotion as well. I have an Interview that Steve Vai did with Howard Stern(downloaded it on the internet) around the time the album was released, funny stuff..

That was 4 years before I was born :(......
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#32 Posted by Neon-Tiger (7683 posts) -
Boring list is boring. +1 for DIck Dale's inclusion, just listen to "King of the Surf Guitar".
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#33 Posted by AxeStrangler (1889 posts) -
Boring list is boring. +1 for DIck Dale's inclusion, just listen to "King of the Surf Guitar".Neon-Tiger
good and innovative, but not to the caliber of the other players mentioned on the list.
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#34 Posted by Neon-Tiger (7683 posts) -
[QUOTE="Neon-Tiger"]Boring list is boring. +1 for Dick Dale's inclusion, just listen to "King of the Surf Guitar".AxeStrangler
good and innovative, but not to the caliber of the other players mentioned on the list.

:( Perhaps not. I fall asleep to Yngwie though.
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#35 Posted by AxeStrangler (1889 posts) -
[QUOTE="AxeStrangler"][QUOTE="Neon-Tiger"]Boring list is boring. +1 for Dick Dale's inclusion, just listen to "King of the Surf Guitar".Neon-Tiger
good and innovative, but not to the caliber of the other players mentioned on the list.

:( Perhaps not. I fall asleep to Yngwie though.

yeah me too, but Rising Force is a hell of an album, as well as Passion & Warfare by Steve Vai.
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#36 Posted by Darth-Caedus (20756 posts) -
[QUOTE="AxeStrangler"][QUOTE="Neon-Tiger"]Boring list is boring. +1 for Dick Dale's inclusion, just listen to "King of the Surf Guitar".Neon-Tiger
good and innovative, but not to the caliber of the other players mentioned on the list.

:( Perhaps not. I fall asleep to Yngwie though.

Most people do it seems:P Dude is technical as hell...and yet somehow sooooooooooo damned boring:P
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#37 Posted by cyberdarkkid (16777 posts) -
[QUOTE="AxeStrangler"][QUOTE="Neon-Tiger"]Boring list is boring. +1 for Dick Dale's inclusion, just listen to "King of the Surf Guitar".Neon-Tiger
good and innovative, but not to the caliber of the other players mentioned on the list.

:( Perhaps not. I fall asleep to Yngwie though.

Yes Yngwie is the only one in that list who's horrible in that list IMO. I don't even know if I'm spelling his name right. But the others are great and you should take a listen to them.
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#38 Posted by StrawberryHill (5321 posts) -

[QUOTE="Toriko42"]I haven't heard of any of these albumsbattlefront23
Same.

I used to own most of those albums. I'm not sure whether to be embarrassed or proud.

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#39 Posted by cyberdarkkid (16777 posts) -

[QUOTE="battlefront23"][QUOTE="Toriko42"]I haven't heard of any of these albumsStrawberryHill

Same.

I used to own most of those albums. I'm not sure whether to be embarrassed or proud.

What, why would you be embarrassed of such masterpieces?
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#40 Posted by Hot-Tamale (2052 posts) -

Makes sense. They went with the big names for this list, but they don't leave anyone out. I would have put Satriana higher personally, though.

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#41 Posted by StrawberryHill (5321 posts) -

[QUOTE="StrawberryHill"]

[QUOTE="battlefront23"] Same.cyberdarkkid

I used to own most of those albums. I'm not sure whether to be embarrassed or proud.

What, why would you be embarrassed of such masterpieces?

I'm a closet shredder lover, and my indie, shoe gazing friends might disown me if they ever found out. :P

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#42 Posted by pis3rch (1695 posts) -
The fact that they even included shawn lane boosts my opinion of GW significantly, although putting malmsteen at #1 is a bit ridiculous. Otherwise not a bad list at all.
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#43 Posted by AxeStrangler (1889 posts) -

[QUOTE="cyberdarkkid"][QUOTE="StrawberryHill"]

I used to own most of those albums. I'm not sure whether to be embarrassed or proud.

StrawberryHill

What, why would you be embarrassed of such masterpieces?

I'm a closet shredder lover, and my indie, shoe gazing friends might disown me if they ever found out. :P

lol I know how you feel.
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#44 Posted by StrawberryHill (5321 posts) -

[QUOTE="StrawberryHill"]

[QUOTE="cyberdarkkid"] What, why would you be embarrassed of such masterpieces?AxeStrangler

I'm a closet shredder lover, and my indie, shoe gazing friends might disown me if they ever found out. :P

lol I know how you feel.

:) I got a couple of dvds in the mail yesterday...One was Stevie Ray Vaughan and Double Trouble Live at the Montreux and the other was Steve Vai's Visual Sound Theories...my brother saw the Steve Vai dvd, gave me a weird glance and started laughing.

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#45 Posted by cyberdarkkid (16777 posts) -

[QUOTE="AxeStrangler"][QUOTE="StrawberryHill"]

I'm a closet shredder lover, and my indie, shoe gazing friends might disown me if they ever found out. :P

StrawberryHill

lol I know how you feel.

:) I got a couple of dvds in the mail yesterday...One was Stevie Ray Vaughan and Double Trouble Live at the Montreux and the other was Steve Vai's Visual Sound Theories...my brother saw the Steve Vai dvd, gave me a weird glance and started laughing.

Well once we can play as good as them people will not laugh at us anymore :x
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#46 Posted by 10thwonder (2031 posts) -

I haven't heard of any of these albumsToriko42

Ditto. What about Van Halen? :oops:

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#47 Posted by AxeStrangler (1889 posts) -

[QUOTE="AxeStrangler"][QUOTE="StrawberryHill"]

I'm a closet shredder lover, and my indie, shoe gazing friends might disown me if they ever found out. :P

StrawberryHill

lol I know how you feel.

:) I got a couple of dvds in the mail yesterday...One was Stevie Ray Vaughan and Double Trouble Live at the Montreux and the other was Steve Vai's Visual Sound Theories...my brother saw the Steve Vai dvd, gave me a weird glance and started laughing.

excellent dvd purchases, and yeah I had similar experiences with some of my friends, that's why I don't let them look at my Ipod anymore, and every time we jam out, they tell me to restrain myself, but every once in a while I play a sweep arpeggio just to see the look on their faces :P

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#48 Posted by cyberdarkkid (16777 posts) -

[QUOTE="StrawberryHill"]

[QUOTE="AxeStrangler"] lol I know how you feel.AxeStrangler

:) I got a couple of dvds in the mail yesterday...One was Stevie Ray Vaughan and Double Trouble Live at the Montreux and the other was Steve Vai's Visual Sound Theories...my brother saw the Steve Vai dvd, gave me a weird glance and started laughing.

excellent dvd purchases, and yeah I had similar experiences with some of my friends, that's why I don't let them look at my Ipod anymore, and every time we jam out, they tell me to restrain myself, but every once in a while I play a sweep arpeggio just to see the look on their faces :P

How long did it take you to sweep pick correctly? I'm still having trouble
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#49 Posted by Zeldafan221 (1190 posts) -

I have only heard of Joe Satriani and Yngwie Malmsteen (which both are good bands/guitar players.) I understand that this is instrumental albums so Thats probobly why.

Edit: I forgot Stevie Vai was in there :P

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#50 Posted by AxeStrangler (1889 posts) -
[QUOTE="AxeStrangler"]

[QUOTE="StrawberryHill"]

:) I got a couple of dvds in the mail yesterday...One was Stevie Ray Vaughan and Double Trouble Live at the Montreux and the other was Steve Vai's Visual Sound Theories...my brother saw the Steve Vai dvd, gave me a weird glance and started laughing.

cyberdarkkid

excellent dvd purchases, and yeah I had similar experiences with some of my friends, that's why I don't let them look at my Ipod anymore, and every time we jam out, they tell me to restrain myself, but every once in a while I play a sweep arpeggio just to see the look on their faces :P

How long did it take you to sweep pick correctly? I'm still having trouble

It took me about 2-3 months to get them down, but I practiced a lot, since it was during the summer, and I practiced it strictly on the acoustic guitar so I can hear my mistakes,. The only thing I can say is practice slowly and gradually increase the speed, and use a metronome to keep a steady beat.