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Review of the Album "Introduction" by American Guitarist Marty Friedman

Updated on November 28, 2020
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Ara is a Journalism graduate from California State University Northridge who is always looking to explore his writing opportunities.

The Album "Introduction" and Its Musical Style

Introduction is the third solo effort or album by former Megadeth guitarist Marty Friedman and it was released in 1994. For some of you music fans, the album may be your first experience with Marty not playing extreme, fast shredding guitars like he had done for most of the 1980’s and 1990’s and you guys may miss those days but what we hear from Marty on this album is a kind of continuation of the material of the album Scenes. The song called “Be” is an example of Marty’s passion and enthusiasm. Playing drums on this album is Nick Menza (1964-2016). Albums such as Introduction are not totally of the new age style simply because there is still some of the shredding guitar style that Marty would play in his years with Megadeth.


A Little More Information About the Song "Be"

However, in the middle of the song, there’s a little more speed as the rock influence kicks in. Does anyone remember Thunder March from the Dragon’s Kiss album? Structurally, “Be” is the same in the middle of the song.

Introduction is One of Those Albums That Can Shift Our Energetic Vibration

This album may have the tendency to feel like it is too soft for some of us to handle for long periods of time but also, given the situation in the United States now with so many people feeling a sense of anxiety, malaise, and anger, Marty Friedman is an example that there are still good qualities left about the United States that all of us can and should focus on (myself included) but it is so hard to do this when it seems as if everything is going downhill like a fast moving snowball and nothing can be done. Through the power and influence of music especially of this type, we can call this a frequency shifter and get ourselves back on the right track in terms of our vibration frequency.

Introduction the Rest of the Review

With the song "Luna" and its sort of atmospheric start, this feels so soothing and pleasant that it sounds like one of the Final Fantasy video games. Final Fantasy 4 comes to my mind as I hear this song. Marty was very fortunate that Dave Mustaine allowed him the musical flexibility to compose his own solo material without objecting considering that Marty was at this time still with Megadeth and the band was undergoing a sort of big musical shift from the fast and heavy thrash metal music to a much more mainstream musical approach. As we hear the song "Loneliness," the somber mood of the song is felt but it also has a kind beauty in in that Marty is able to create through his mastery of the electric guitar. However, the first song called "Arrival" starts off this very good album with a sort of classical feel that all of the European classical music composers would have been very impressed with had they been living in our 21st century.


The Calming Influence of the Album Introduction

Introduction is one of those albums that you can put into a CD player and listen to it as you are taking a relaxing hot bath or having dinner with your significant other. Trust that you will enjoy this album immensely if you give it a chance. The strongest song in Introduction are Bittersweet, Be, Luna, Loneliness, and Siberia. Speaking of bittersweet, the song will not induce any kind of bitter feeling in you but you will hear the play of the shakuhachi instrument by Nick’s father Don Menza. This is not as popular as Greek musician Yanni but it is a very good new age and classically influenced instrumental album by one of the best American born guitarists ever. We did not discuss the start of the album enough which begins with the song Arrival, the soothing piece that you might have heard something similar on the previous album Scenes. "Bittersweet" is another soothing kind of song as it may have the power to provide some comfort and healing as a result of the effects caused by the current pandemic. In 1995 when Introduction was written I don’t ever recall too many similar albums of its kind back then. In a sense, the album was something that many of us may not have expected from Marty Friedman. Introduction is a welcome treat for those of us that tire from the metal-oriented stuff that Friedman was involved with at the time. “Escapism” has that soft, chilled out feel that you would hear on an easy listening kind of album. “Mama” starts out with Friedman’s guitar work even if it consists of slow plucks of the strings. The song continues as we are treated to a modern musical calming work of art. If Scenes was solid, so is Introduction as Friedman is finally able to fully express himself without any pressure from Dave Mustaine or his other former band mates.

Introduction Final Thoughts

"Loneliness" has the feel of a lonely, somber person that feels lost in their life, yet the song does not want to make you want to cry which shows Friedman’s musical mastery. He is able to write a somber song without making us feel the same way. introduction is not a flawless new-age or soothing album but it is a welcome treat for those that want to hear something so different from Marty Friedman and to feel like they have spent over 40 minutes enjoying themselves.


© 2018 Ara Vahanian


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