STEVIE SALAS – The Sun And The Earth

STEVIE SALAS - The Sun And The Earth
  • 9/10
    STEVIE SALAS - The Sun And The Earth - 9/10


Invisible Hands
Release date: April 17, 2007

User Review
0/10 (0 votes)

Towards the end of the 80s, a new slant on Hard Rock was coming to the boil with bands such as Red Hot Chili Peppers, The Electric Boys, Fishbone, and Living Colour making waves with the record buying public by combining the punch of Hard Rock with the groove of Funk. Around this time, Island Records splashed out a record sum for an unsigned artist when they added Stevie Salas Colorcode to their roster.

Stevie Salas had plied his trade with the Funkmaster General himself, George Clinton, as well as playing lead axe for Rod Stewart and a short-lived stint with Duran Duran’s Andy Taylor, giving him an impressive pedigree at an early age.

With the backing of a major label and an extensive UK tour with fellow Funksters, 24-7 Spyz, things were looking bright for Salas. When his critically acclaimed and highly impressive debut came out in 1990, it looked as though the world was at his feet.

It didn’t quite work out like that, though, and to the general music crowd, he disappeared off the radar. To those in the know, however, Salas continued pumping out quality discs, which were unfortunately available only at sky-high import prices. In between creating some fine music, Salas was also busy on the session circuit, including a stint with Mick Jagger’s solo band, further evidencing his growing reputation within the music industry.

Fast forward to 2007, and Salas is set to relaunch himself on the uninitiated by the release of The Sun And The Earth, a comprehensive career overview to show everyone else what they’ve been missing for all these years.

The Sun And The Earth features no less than 26 tracks culled from his entire career, including an impressive host of guests: Ronnie Wood, Glenn Hughes, Jerry Cantrell, and the larger than life P-Funk/James Brown bass legend Bootsy Collins.

From the opening cut of “Tell Your Story Walkin’,” Salas quickly establishes his Funk credentials with a granite hard edge. A huge guitar riff opens proceedings before the groove kicks in, and boy does it kick in. The energy pervades from every pore before the enormous hook grabs you at the chorus. The guitar solo soars and screams over a frantic backbeat as Salas goes into overdrive.

“Pumpin’ It Up” is, if anything, more Funky and even more irresistible. Maybe it’s less overtly rocky, but it hits just as hard as anything out there now. Again, the groove and hook at the chorus are simply wonderful.

Bernard Fowler lends his golden tonsils to “Grooveline,” and together with T.M Stevens huge buoyant bass lines, breathes new life into Heatwaves classic number. Check out the middle eight where Stevens’ slap bass lays the foundation for Salas to step to the fore and deliver another sparkling solo.

The classic Stevie Salas Colorcode debut is well represented here, and rightly so. “The Harder They Come” rocks hard, as does “Two Bullets From a Gun,” yet retaining that sense of rhythm that brings these songs to life.

The first CD contains more of the up-tempo foot-stomping moments, with the rabid “Hoochie Toad” ensuring the pace is maintained throughout the whole of the disc to the very end.

The second disc shows the more reflective and soulful side of Salas. At times, he sounds eerily like Hendrix vocally, and at times his guitar playing pays homage to the legend, yet still retains his own imitatable identity.

“Soul Ecstasy” features Alice in Chains six-stringer Jerry Cantrell, in an altogether more laid back capacity, but what a performance! Pure music straight from the heart created for the soul.

Glenn Hughes also pops up to add his great voice to “I Was Made To Love Her,” and puts in a sterling performance, yet not to be outdone, Salas again strikes forth with an incendiary solo.

No compilation can hope to incorporate all the songs that deserve to be included; “Punk Ass Bitch” being a notable omission, yet Salas has produced a thoroughly entertaining collection showcasing his innovative talents. It is clear why so many major artists rate him so highly.

What Salas succeeds in doing is combining several musical styles and blends them into something exciting and unique. Throughout, there’s elements of Rock, Metal, Funk, Soul, and Blues fused together with an organic feel that is genuinely uplifting.

Many bands have tried to achieve this, but fall short and sound somewhat forced, but Salas hits the nail on the head. Listen to this album and your feet won’t be still for long. The Sun And The Earth is a perfect place to start for those yet to make the acquaintance with Salas.

If there’s any justice, this will see the name of Stevie Salas elevated beyond his current cult status. Stevie Salas is quite simply one of the most exciting guitar talents of the last 15 years, and is a refreshing alternative to the more celebrated “Guitar Heroes” out there at the moment.


  • Mick Burgess

    Mick is a reviewer and photographer here at Metal Express Radio, based in the North-East of England. He first fell in love with music after hearing Jeff Wayne's spectacular The War of the Worlds in the cold winter of 1978. Then in the summer of '79 he discovered a copy of Kiss Alive II amongst his sister’s record collection, which literally blew him away! He then quickly found Van Halen I and Rainbow's Down To Earth, and he was well on the way to being rescued from Top 40 radio hell!   Over the ensuing years, he's enjoyed the Classic Rock music of Rush, Blue Oyster Cult, and Deep Purple; the AOR of Journey and Foreigner; the Pomp of Styx and Kansas; the Progressive Metal of Dream Theater, Queensrÿche, and Symphony X; the Goth Metal of Nightwish, Within Temptation, and Epica, and a whole host of other great bands that are too numerous to mention. When he's not listening to music, he watches Sunderland lose more football (soccer) matches than they win, and occasionally, if he has to, he goes to work as a property lawyer.

    View all posts

Be the first to comment

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published.


This site is protected by reCAPTCHA and the Google Privacy Policy and Terms of Service apply.

The reCAPTCHA verification period has expired. Please reload the page.