jakub | April 9, 2024

Duel Guitar Mayhem – Steve Vai and Joe Satriani Take Over the Waterbury Palace Theater in Waterbury, Connecticut on April 7, 2024



Waterbury, Connecticut is home to the legendary Palace Theater. The theater has hosted incredible acts over the years like Fleetwood Mac, Pink Floyd, Queen and Bob Dylan. If you name the artist, chances are high that they have graced the Palace Theater’s stage once in their career. Tonight was no different. Two legendary guitarists, Steve Vai and Joe Satriani brought their Vai/Satriani tour to the famous Palace Theater on Sunday, April 6, 2024.

Satriani is been credited with guitar work on multiple prolific records like Alice Cooper’s Hey Stoopid and Blue Öyster Cult‘s 1988 album, Imaginos. Satriani also has had an outstanding career as a solo artist. Like Satriani, Vai also got his start playing with A-list musicians like Frank Zappa, David Lee Roth and Whitesnake before venturing off as a solo artist. Since 1984, Vai has released multiple solo albums since his debut in with Flex-Able.

As fans were comfortably sitting in their red cushioned seats, what was once an empty theater turned into a rock guitar cathedral as Vai graced the stage for his set. The first of the co-headling guitar set started with “Avalancha” off of 2022’s Inviolate. Vai’s set was only eight songs but regardless of the amount, Vai and his band performed with thunderous adrenaline for the hour that they were on stage.

Vai is a true showman when it comes to his stage presence. While shredding his guitar, at times he would pick up his guitar with one hand while posing. Each movement that Vai made was perfectly executed as if in sync with the music. Vai dazzled the audience throughout his set. After each song ended, the audience would roar to a cheer as the Vai band plunged into the next tune.

The talented musicians joining Vai on stage were Dante Frisiello on guitar, Philip Bynoe on bass and Jeremy Colson on the drums. The monstrous drumming was – along with the mastery of guitar – another consistent throughout the night’s show.

Each song performed was a trip for the listeners. Like a Grateful Dead show, it was simply all about the music. The band was in perfect sync with each other and they did not miss one step. It was great to see Vai interact with each member separately. Vai would walk to either side of the stage and smile and fool around with Frisiello and Bynoe. At one point, Vai would even turn back to Colson who was whaling away on the drums.


Steve Vai’s Band Is:

Steve Vai – Guitar

Dante Frisiello – Guitar

Philip Bynoe – Bass

Jeremy Colson – Drums




1. Avalancha

2. Building the Church

3. Little Pretty

4. Tender Surrender

5. Lights Are On

6. Zeus in Chains

7. Teeth of the Hydra

8. For the Love of God


Between Vai and Satriani’s set, there was a brief intermission for fans to catch their breath and soak in the last few moments of Vai’s brilliant set. But, not too long after, the Satriani band jumped onto the stage to breathe more guitar life into the theater.

Joining Satriani on stage was Kenny Aronoff on drums, Bruan Beller on bass and Rai Thistlethwayte on keyboards and guitar.

Unlike Vai’s set, Satriani featured one song with vocals, “Big Bad Moon,” off 1989’s Flying In a Blue Dream. Throughout Satriani’s set, he never let up off the gas and kept the setlist moving. Towards the tail end of this set, he persevered through some technical difficulties with his guitar and eventually finished with a powerful rendition of “Ice 9,” from 1987’s Surfing with the Alien.

Satriani, who sported all back and a pair of giant sunglasses was a man possessed on the guitar. While running all over the stage, he had a presence that commanded the audience to note his wizardry on the guitar. Throughout Satriani’s set, the one thing that I couldn’t help but notice was that he was smiling. Throughout every song and was genuinely happy to be there. Both musicians seemed like they were performing for a room full of friends.

Like Vai, Satriani is also a New York native who told the jam-packed audience that he is so happy to be out again on tour with his friend, Vai. The duo most recently played with each other during a 13-date tour with their band, G3. The G3 tour spanned from January of this year till early February.


Joe Satriani’s Band Is:

Joe Satriani – Guitar/Vocals

Kenny Aronoff – Drums,

Bruan Beller – Bass

Rai Thistlethwayte – Keyboards/Guitar.



While Satriani was wrapping up his set, he reintroduced Vai to the Waterbury audience as the duo then performed three songs to close the show. The first was “The Sea Of Emotions, Pt. 1” which was released as a single on March. 29, 2024. The other two were “You Really Got Me,” which is a Kinks over as well as their version of Metallica’s “Enter Sandman.” During “Enter Sandman,” both guitarists showed off their skills one more time to thunderous applause from the crowd as they took one last bow off stage.

What was once a loud, guitar-filled venue slowly returned to the quaint theater that it was before the show. As fans left the theater, the all-age show was in awe of the guitar skills that were showcased that evening. Despite the show being on a Sunday evening, the fans showed up and made more noise than the artist’s guitars.




1. The Extremist

2. Surfing With the Alien

3. Satch Boogie

4. Sahara

5. Nineteen Eighty

6. Big Bad Moon

7. Flying in a Blue Dream

8. Blue Foot Groovy

9. Always With Me, Always With You

10. If I Could Fly

11. Ice 9

12. The Sea Of Emotion, Pt. 1 (with Steve Vai)

13. You Really Got me (Kinks cover with Steve Vai)

14. Enter Sandman (Metallica cover with Steve Vai)






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