Most fans know Marty Friedman as the lead guitarist of Megadeth, but prior to Megadeth he was already a respected figure in the guitar world due to his remarkable work with Jason Becker in Cacophony and his solo album Dragon’s Kiss, where he stood out as a melodic player. He takes his melodic playing a step further, releasing a Japanese-new age influenced guitar album. There’s still some rock music here, but most of the album is very mellow, which is a strange thing for a guitar shredder. His playing resembles such guitarists like Uli Jon, applying japanese scales to the guitar (another unusual thing among metal guitarists). In order to enjoy this album, you gotta be very open minded musically. Otherwise, you’ll find this release very boring. It’s not the usual Friedman, and it’s not the usual Shrapnel Records release, which makes the album even more enjoyable and unpredictable. One more detail: Megadeth’s drummer Nick Menza plays here also, and still, there’s no metal music here.
3. Valley of Eternity
5. Realm of the Senses
8. Triumph [you’ll find it’s co written with a great musician called Kitaro !!]
5.0 out of 5 stars A masterpiece of melodic proportions… This is a stirring album that on first listen enthrals and en-spells the listener. Marty has a gift as a guitarist being able to throw melody and emotion into every part of this album meaning once you play it you will listen to it again and again. Nick Menza also plays a small role with his exceptional drum lines complimenting the potency and fluidity of Marty’s playing style. Excellent is not enough to describe how good this album is.
Very relaxing to listen to…it’s like the equivalent of a video game like Civilization or Harvest Moon in musical form.
I bought “Scenes” expecting more of the same.
What a wonderful surprise! Scenes is captivating. From beginning to end, Scenes creates a mood and transports you to a place where all music is beautiful.Clean, clear, and every note is carefully crafted. Not what you’d expect from a “shredder”. Of all my CDs by Satriani, Vai, Petrucci, and Malmsteen, this is now my favorite! As a guitarist, Friedman is excellent. As a composer, he is supreme.
Just relax in your couch and listen to it.
A lot of the ideas in ‘Scenes,’ Marty has said, were written when he was a teenager, and the album served as a ‘cleaning out’ of his old ideas. They were however arranged and played by a musically mature Friedman, so the old ideas could hold up to anything else in his other CDs.
The synth simulations in this album are more ‘fake’ here than in Marty’s follow-up ‘Introduction,’ but I like this fakeness. And if they passed co-producer Kitaro’s standards, then there couldn’t really be a problem with them.
That’s another thing. I was introduced to Kitaro through this album. I heard a lot more of Kitaro afterwards, and he’s a cool musician himself.
Anyway, ‘Tibet’ and ‘Angel’ are basically one piece, and a great opener to this heavily Oriental album. ‘Valley of Eternity’ is my favorite piece of Marty in any album. It’s epic, and has such beautiful, perfect melodies. ‘Night’ is a cool track, and has great passionate solos towards the end. I’m so proud to be a Marty fan.
‘Realm of the Senses’ is my second favorite track. I love the exotic vibrato here. His style of shredding on a clean tone is so powerful. This is just a wonderful track.
‘West,’ influenced by the ‘Marlboro’ commercials I’m guessing, has some really awesome background guitar arpeggios. Another perfect moment in the album.
‘Trance’ is basically a jam tune, I never cared for it actually. It’s a good contrast though, I guess, to ‘Triumph,’ which is a ‘peaceful thunder march.’ A good serene ending for this album.
Marty Friedman, in this and all of his albums, shows that being a good guitarist and musician has nothing to do with genre.
A truly unique phenomenon in guitar-oriented music.
“Scenes” isn’t a typical shredder’s album. This is very melodic, if not a symphonic masterpiece that takes you on a sonic journey. Each song ties in with the next from beginning to end as it paints a wonderful tapestry of sound. Everything is wonderfully played out and is mesmorizing. If you are into pure guitar music, you will not be disappointed in this. Pick this up as well as his follow up album, “Introduction”.
This is something completely different.
Instead of aggressive and abrasive, this music is docile and smooth. Nearly every song has melodies that can touch your soul. This is very emotional music no doubt. A lot of it is Japanese influenced.
Marty’s structure on this album is that nearly each song slowly builds to a climax of soft power. For example, on “West” (one of my fav songs on the album), he starts on a very melodic melody riff thing, and eventually breaks into a very cool middle section. After a repeat of the middle section, Marty then does a beautiful falling arpeggio over the melody, and it comes out perfectly. Each time repeating this phase, he adds another instrument or touch to the mix.
You will shed a few tears listening to the peaceful sounds of this album. Highly recommended. Its not shreddy, but creative enough to entertain. Just sit back, relax, and listen to Friedman’s magic. A couple o’ highlights are West, Night, Triumph, and Valley of eternity. Also Angel is quite good.
I just recently looked him up on Wiki and found he did, indeed, release a bunch of other solo albums after parting with Deth and to be honest … am very glad he decided to walk his own road and release in my opinion some of the best guitar albums ever. Tokyo Jukebox is definitely a hard hitting album I love to death, but I can’t stop listening to Realm of The Senses from this album, the solo in it is just crushing and there’s so much raw emotion in it … I’m sitting here right now listening to it and smoking a Padilla Dominus Robusto, life can’t be any better!
This album was mesmerizing; I never before have listened to anything as close to its sensuality and well constructed luscious melodies.
I think that I became a different person ever since, and my appreciation to music took a whole different dimension.