Jimi Hendrix proved that the electric guitar was about more than amplified strings, and no player since has pursued the shrieking spirits lurking inside the demon box with the fervor -- and the success -- of Adrian Belew. Pachydermal wails, banshee shrieks, and wild, six-string assaults are as commonplace in his playing as secondhand blues licks are in the works of most of his peers. Over his three-decade career, Belew's unique instrumental voice has been sought by artists ranging from Paul Simon to Nine Inch Nails. His imaginative grasp of guitar electronics garnered him tenure with two formidable axemen, the first being Frank Zappa in the late '70s. Later he was a full partner of Robert Fripp in the latter-day King Crimson. Then there's Belew's flair for post-Beatles vocalizing vented through his pop outfit, the Bears, and a solo catalogue that bridges both personas. Belew's format du jour
is the power trio, heavily featured on the recent disc Side One
, the first of a three-volume project (Side Two
was released this week). Belew's supersonics mesh well with the machinations of Primus bassist Les Claypool and Tool drummer Danny Carey on Side One
's opening three tracks. Belew is joined on this tour by Mark Nemmer (drums) and Eric Hubner (bass). Show up and see a different Side
of this guitar legend.