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Joe Satriani

The band shone most brightly, of course, on the hard-rock numbers from Satriani's earlier recordings.

The band shone most brightly, of course, on the hard-rock numbers from Satriani’s earlier recordings.

Songs from his breakthrough albums “Surfing With the Alien” and “Flying in a Blue Dream” brought roars from the 1,000 or so pupils. Hamm’s unrestrained style and Mover’s unpredictable aggression and the trio’s stage familiarity created a number of instrumental masterpieces.

The current “Joe Satriani” set, his seventh for Relativity, is being embraced by adult album alternative radio stations, a new twist for Satriani.

The album sports a looser production style and the introduction of blues and jazzy mood-making into Satriani’s repertoire. Here, his dynamic musings weren’t always as loudly received as the hits, but his keen sense of melodic invention, apparent on songs old and new, made the entire program a treat.

Joe Satriani

(House of Blues, Hollywood; 1,000 seats; $ 27.50)

Production: Promoted inhouse. Band: Joe Satriani, Stu Hamm, Jonathan Mover, Jeff Campitelli. Reviewed Dec. 27, 1995. Bay Area guitar-meister Joe Satriani's music is in transition, again. Bringing the live version of his bold new eponymous album -- a record that marks a definitive progressive notch in his career -- to a packed House of Blues on Tuesday and Wednesday, he managed to satisfy the old-school head-banging contingent and give further evidence of where his award-winning imagination is leading him. Returning to the trusty power trio lineup of himself, bass whiz Stu Hamm and frenetic Boston drummer Jonathan Mover that first brought Satriani fame in the late '80s, Wednesday's two-hour-plus show was marked by the quality of his songwriting -- the reason he alone survives from last decade's guitar-hero boom -- and, to a lesser degree, his inclination for the unexplored.

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