By Benjamin Whitener
Staff reporter

Sammy Hagar came to rock. Backed by one of popular music’s latest super groups, Chickenfoot, the Red Rocker does just that.

Chickenfoot is a new band made up of the before mentioned Red Rocker, Sammy Hagar and Michael Anthony of Van Halen fame. Joining them is Chad Smith from Red Hot Chili Peppers and superstar solo artist Joe Satriani.

The band started as a jam band with Hagar, Anthony and Smith playing for fun at Hagar’s Cabo Wabo Cantina in Mexico. The group began to get more and more serious, but they were short a guitar player. Anthony said, “We needed a guitarist. Somebody smokin’ – somebody who could take us to the Promised Land.” Enter Satriani.

Chickenfoot’s self titled debut album was released in June. It consists of 12 tracks including the comical “Soap on a Rope,” the sensual “Sexy Little Thing,” the bizarre “Get it Up” and the hard driving first single “Oh Yeah.”

The new album covers numerous corners of the rock world from metal to funk to blues. It also includes a few elements of old school country reminiscent of early Johnny Cash. Chickenfoot even manages to throw in a couple of slow ballads. With this many styles of music combined into one album it can get messy and the musical identity of the band can get lost. This is not the case with Chickenfoot. Each of the band members individual styles play well together and the result is nothing short of awesome.

Satriani’s guitar playing is so versatile and all out amazing. He can’t refrain from being awesome. Smith throws down the drum tracks as expected from the solid percussionist who knows when to lay low and when to grab the listener’s attention. Anthony brings in the bottom end with the bass guitar and has a great feel for playing in the pocket while keeping the groove going. Throw in Hagar’s classic vocals with that dirty growl and you’ve got one sweet sound. Chickenfoot has a sound that is undeniably each member’s distinct sound, but the sound as a whole is unique.

The intent of the album is not to work the mind or give the premise of a life changing experience. The sole purpose of the album is to rock. Chickenfoot is purely for aural pleasure. They take it back to when rock was about having fun and getting the girl, or the guy.

Unique to the new Chickenfoot album is the album artwork. The CD and LP (vinyl) first editions are printed with thermochronic-ink. The ink will react to temperature and change accordingly. At normal room temperature or anything below 84 degrees Fahrenheit the cover will be opaque black. When it is touched by something warmer than 84 degrees, such as a hand, the thermochronic-ink will appear transparent and the image underneath will show through. This feature alone is almost worth buying the album for.

The album can be purchased in CD and vinyl formats at Best Buy or amazon.com as well as other major retailers. Digital formats can be obtained on iTunes.com. It can also be picked up on the band’s website along with other Chickenfoot merchandise.

For a complete track listing and to hear songs from the Chickenfoot debut album visit chickenfoot.us.

Benjamin Whitener is a junior majoring in digital art. You may e-mail him at benjamin.whitener@sckans.edu.