On Tour: Paul Gilbert

Anyone familiar with rock guitar has undoubtedly heard of Paul Gilbert, the ever-present shredder who got famous in the 1980’s by building a stunning technique from the innovations of Eddie Van Halen and Yngwie Malmsteen. (If you like rock, and you’ve somehow dodged exposure to Paul’s music, please do yourself a favor and check him out on YouTube.) He’s got a new album called I Can Destroy, and he’s on tour for the first time since 2012.

Probably the coolest thing he’s doing now is the medley (shredley?), which kicks off each concert with a blend of songs from his entire career. The result is 40 minutes of ooey-gooey fan service, which can be immensely entertaining if you’re familiar with PG’s back catalog.

My one major complaint is that many of these songs deserve their own place in the setlist, not a sixteen-bar excerpt. The rest of the show consists almost entirely of new material, and is notably lacking any instrumental other than perennial favorites “Technical Difficulties” and “Scarified.”

Oh, well. We still love you, Paul.

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