Steve Vai announces new album, Inviolate, reveals tracklisting and release date

Steve Vai
(Image credit: Lisa Lake/Getty Images)

Steve Vai has revealed the name of his upcoming studio album and announced it’s set to arrive on January 28 next year.

Titled Inviolate, the nine-track effort will be the electric guitar icon’s 10th solo studio album and his first in six years, following 2016’s Modern Primitive.

Vai made the announcement via a very brief social media post, which simply stated, “Yup, it’s ready. And it drops on January 28th, 2022. It’s called Inviolate. Enjoy the ride.”

Though there were no other details, the post was accompanied by the album’s artwork, which in turn revealed Inviolate’s tracklist. Among the handful of yet-to-be-heard numbers are a selection of familiar favorites, including Knappsack and Candle Power.

And, if those two tracks are anything to go by, Inviolate is set to serve up a serious treat for guitar fans. While Vai wrote, recorded and shredded Knappsack with just one hand – he was recovering from trigger finger surgery at the time – he upped the ante and debuted an innovative "joint shifting" technique on Candle Power.

The entire tracklist can be found below:

  1. Teeth Of The Hydra
  2. Zeus In Chains
  3. Little Pretty
  4. Candle Power
  5. Apollo In Color
  6. Avalancha
  7. Greenish Blues
  8. Knappsack
  9. Sandman Cloud Mist

As for the album itself, the name Inviolate will no doubt strike a chord with ardent Vai fans, after the Ibanez-toting wizard announced a sprawling, 54-date US tour of the same name earlier this year.

Announced in September, Inviolate the tour will kick off in Las Vegas on January 27 – the day before the album comes out – at the House of Blues, and run until April 4, where it will conclude at The Theatre at Ace Hotel in Los Angeles.

On the road, Vai will be accompanied by his long-time backing band, which features guitarist David Weiner, bassist Philip Bynoe and drummer Jeremy Colson.

It’s set to be a hectic start to the year for Vai, whose 2021 was equally eventful. Not only did the virtuoso release Knappsack and Candle Power, he also set up his own Patreon page, where he hosts Q&As, listening parties and more.

There are no further details regarding the upcoming album as of yet, though given its release date is remarkably soon – less than four weeks, no less – we expect tidbits to filter through in the coming weeks. And when they do, you best believe we’ll bring them straight to you.

To find out more in the meantime, head over to Steve Vai’s website.

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Matt Owen

Matt is a Staff Writer, writing for Guitar World, Guitarist and Total Guitar. He has a Masters in the guitar, a degree in history, and has spent the last 16 years playing everything from blues and jazz to indie and pop. When he’s not combining his passion for writing and music during his day job, Matt records for a number of UK-based bands and songwriters as a session musician.