While the style of music has not changed much since the previous album, Hymn of the Seventh Galaxy, important changes have taken place in the band's sound and line-up. Both keyboardist Chick Corea and bassist Stanley Clarke have now found their own well known trademark sounds. Corea has started to use synthesizers (most notably the Moog Minimoog and ARP Odyssey synthesizers) and has developed his own distinctive sound and approach to them. Similarly, Clarke's bass playing now has the sound and feel which has cemented his position as one of the most world's most influential bass players. An equally important change in the band is the replacement of guitarist Bill Connors with the then 19-year-old "boy wonder" Al Di Meola. Connors left the band before the recording of this album to concentrate on his acoustic solo career. Di Meola's playing is not yet as adventurous and intense as it would become on later albums, but he has already been given lots of solo space to display his talent. Overall, the band have developed a clearer, more focused sound and style. This is due in part to the personnel changes, the implementation of new technology, and new playing techniques, but it is also a product of more careful recording and production in the studio.
Between the album's longer tracks are three of Corea's short piano improvisations that all bear a title that begins "Where Have I...". The first track is Stanley Clarke's "Vulcan Worlds", which features some melodic motives that would also appear on Clarke's self titled solo album the same year. Each player except for drummer Lenny White takes long solos. The next long track is Lenny White's composition "The Shadow of Lo", a complex piece with many changes in mood. The last track on Side A is Corea's "Beyond the Seventh Galaxy" which is clearly a sequel to his "Hymn of the Seventh Galaxy", the title track from the group's previous album. Side B begins with the collective jam "Earth Juice". Most of Side B is taken up by Corea's 14-minute epic "Song to the Pharaoh Kings". The track has a long keyboard intro, after which Chick Corea is joined by the full band, and an "eastern" theme appears. During the piece each member of the band plays a long solo.