Archive for Assault Attack

Great Metal Albums of 1982: Michael Schenker Group- One Night at Budokan

Posted in 1980s, Concerts, Heavy Metal, Heavy Metal and the 1980s, Music, Rock, Uncategorized with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , on July 17, 2015 by 80smetalman

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After letting their great studio album “Assault Attack” slip through my fingers, it was the live album from the Michael Schenker Group, “One Night at Budokan,” that I finally bought. This was because I was looking for one song in particular and although my record buying rule has always been never to buy a entire album on account of one song, I was so determined to get something with the song “Cry for the Nations” on it, that I broke my rule. On this occasion, my gamble paid off because not only I got the song I wanted, I got twelve other kick ass tracks as well.

“One Night at Budokan” adds the Michael Schenker Group to the list of bands I regret not having seen live. From what I hear on this album, I’m sure that they would have totally ruled in concert. Like with so many live albums, great guitarists just use their time in the spotlight to just let loose and Michael Schenker does that so well many times here. The most stand out for me is his efforts on “Lost Horizons.” Schenker just goes into a long mad solo and I find myself lapping up every second of it. Needless to say, though I’m going to anyway, his guitar work is just as mad on many of the other tracks and it’s a shame I took so long to recognize his talents.

Graham Bonnet does not appear on this live album but Gary Barden does an excellent job at the mike here. His vocals are enough to make me wonder why I haven’t heard him anywhere else. Another thing I didn’t acknowledge all of these years is that the Michael Schenker Group are part of the Deep Purple family tree. I have already pointed out Graham Bonnet but beating the drums on this album is none other than Cozy Powell. I don’t think I need to say any more about the quality of the drumming, do I? He is recognized on the album as he is introduced to the audience who show their appreciation to having such a great drummer on stage. With all of these elements in place, it is little wonder why “One Night at Budokan” is such a great live album and yes, they also do a great rendition of the song I was looking for in the first place.

Track Listing:

1. Armed and Ready

2. Cry for the Nations

3.  Attack of the Mad Axeman

4. But I Want More

5. Victim of Illusion

6. Into the Arena

7. On and On

8. Never Trust a Stranger

9. Let Sleeping Dogs Lie

10. Courvoisier Concerto

11. Lost Horizons

12. Doctor, Doctor

13. Are You Ready to Rock

Michael Schenker Group (as on One Night at Budokan)

Michael Schenker Group (as on One Night at Budokan)

Michael Schenker- guitar

Gary Barden- vocals

Paul Raymond- rhythm guitar, keyboards

Chris Glen- bass

Cozy Powell- drums

Breaking my record buying rule on this occasion paid off. I got myself a killer live album. However, there will be a tale when I get to 1983 where doing the same would bite me on the bum. So for the moment, let us linger on the success with Michael Schenker Group.

On another note, it was an eleventh hour decision buy my step son and I will be going to this years Bloodstock Festival on the Friday only. For my step son, it will be the headliners Trivium  and Sabbaton that interest him. As for me, I’m dying to see Overkill, Armoured Saint and Nuclear Assault and of course, I will post a full account of the day.

Next post: KISS- Creatures of the Night

To buy Rock and Roll Children, go to http://www.strategicpublishinggroup.com/title/RockAndRollChildren.html

Also available on Amazon, Barnes & Noble and Froogle and on sale at Foyles Book Shop in London

 

 

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Great Metal Albums of 1982: Michael Schenker Group- Assault Attack

Posted in 1980s, Heavy Metal, Heavy Metal and the 1980s, Music, Rock, Uncategorized with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , on July 12, 2015 by 80smetalman

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There is a story from back in the day in which this album is involved but not in a good way. In the closing weeks of 1982, I was stationed on Okinawa. On most Saturday nights, my friends and I would hit this rock club about 10 miles from the base. I won’t go into too many details about the club as that is reserved for a future post but I will say that they had video screens which were state of the art back then. One song that received a lot of play on those screens was “Cry for the Nations” by Michael Schenker Group. I liked the song enough to want to check out the album. During my search, I assumed that the song was current, so I looked up their most current album at the time, “Assault Attack.” However, seeing that the desired song wasn’t on this album, I put it down and continued my search. After all these years, and finally listening to the album, I see what a fool I’ve been. The worst part was that I can’t blame being in the service for missing it because I had this album in my hands! Anyway, what I have learned that this album totally kicks ass.

When I posted “Great Guitarists of the 70s,” an old friend of mine stated that he would have added Michael Schenker to the list. While I wasn’t totally naive to the guitar mastery of Mr Schenker, it took this album to agree that he possibly should have been included, at the very least, in the group of underrated guitarists because this guy can play. What amazes me most is his versatile style. He lays down some great blues based riffs on “Rock You to the Ground” but goes more straight ahead metal with the likes of “Assault Attack,” Samurai” and “Desert Song.” Then he shines in the spotlight with the instrumental “Ulcer.” Bad joke alert: I did not get one after hearing that track. Anyway, I humbly beg Michael Schenker’s forgiveness in ignoring his guitar talents and make a vow to rectify that.

Of the lead singers who fronted Rainbow over the years, I must say that Graham Bonnet was always my least favourite. While Ronnie James Dio will always be my favourite, I even put Joe Lynn Turner above Bonnet. After listening to his vocals on “Assault Attack,” I am now in the mind that my feelings about that era of Rainbow were nothing to do with Graham but more to do with the songs they put out at the time; too commercial for me. Listening to him with MSG, I couldn’t believe my eyes when I read that he was the lead singer because his vocals are just superb on this album. One prime example is “Dancer” but he hits the notes on every song on the album. I have the feeling that I’m going to be eating a lot of humble pie after making this post because Graham, you rock here!

Track Listing:

1. Assault Attack

2. Rock You to the Ground

3. Dancer

4. Samurai

5. Desert Song

6. Broken Promises

7. Searching for a Reason

8. Ulcer

Michael Schenker Group

Michael Schenker Group

Michael Schenker- guitars

Graham Bonnet- vocals

Chris Glen- bass

Ted McKenna- drums

Tommy Eyre- keyboards

Cliched quotes like “all’s well that ends well” and “better late than never” are entering my mind in regards to this great album by the Michael Schenker Group. Unfortunately, none of them justify the fact that back in 1982, I literally let a fantastic album slip through my fingers. As for “Cry for the Nations,” I did find the song on a live album and that’s coming next.

Next post: Michael Schenker Group- One Night at Bukokan

To buy Rock and Roll Children, go to http://www.strategicpublishinggroup.com/title/RockAndRollChildren.html

Also available on Amazon, Barnes & Noble and Froogle and on sale at Foyles Book Shop in London