My biggest issue with Michael Schenker's post UFO career is that his vocalists wouldn't stick around very long. We had Gary Barden for a bit followed by Graham Bonnet for a quick second who was replaced by Barden only to be gone just in time for Robin McAuley. Then as Schenker shifted from MSG to Temple Of Rock, to solo albums it began to get even more confusing with even more singers. To bring it all full circle, the Michael Schenker Fest hit the road, celebrating the music of Schenker featuring the singers you wanted to see and hear... Barden, Bonnet, McAuley and Doogie White, all performing the songs they made their own. When it was announced a few months back there would be a new album featuring these four singers my anticipation grew and my expectations began to reach dangerous levels. Could this album, RESURRECTION from Nuclear Blast live up to what I want it to be?
Yes, yes.... friggin' YES!!!
When you put together a lineup with this much talent and legacy you need to be confident that this album will work; the players will gel, the singers will all feel involved and the material will be suited for each voice. Produced by Michael Voss, RESURRECTION is the album fans (especially me) have been hoping for; well crafted songs that showcase Schenker's talents and highlight the players who surround him.
Although the story certainly is the singers coming on board, the band is as star studded and all share history with Schenker. Joining him is drummer Ted McKenna, keyboardist/guitarist Steve Mann and bassist Chris Glen who all turn in powerful and passionate performances, some of the best in their careers. The musicians help create cohesiveness as the album shifts from style to style and singer to singer.
The album contains 12 amazing songs like the ripping Heart And Soul which features McAuley on vocals and Metallica's Kirk Hammett on guitar. Each singer gets a few moments to shine and really capture their era of MSG history. Loving A Life Worth Living sounds like it could have come off MSG, Night Moves fits perfectly with anything off ASSAULT ATTACK and Time Knows When Its Time is as good as anything from McAuley Schenker era. We also get two moments where all the vocalists sing together; the beautiful and haunting Warrior and the dark horse on the album, The Last Supper.
If I had to pick a favorite from the album it would be the Doogie White sung Take Me To The Church. This song is heavy, driving and features some amazing work by Schenker. The solo here is so emotional and White has the snark and snarl of Ian Gillan on this. One of Schenker's best, ever!
RESURRECTION is an amazing album, possibly his best album since the days of MSG. It all starts with the songs and here, no matter who was singing, the song was the most important thing. It's hard to imagine all these guys getting together, sharing the spotlight and make some music that certainly hearkens back to the past, but definitely has an eye to the future. No one here is living in the past which makes RESURRECTION such a perfect title.
MATMAN'S REVIEW - 4.5 out of 5 Flying V's
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=boCx73KaeGs - TAKE ME TO THE CHURCH
www.youtube.com/watch?v=D2VtSdZHKbE - WARRIOR
The Power Chords Podcast is a twice-monthly podcast celebrating rock and metal music of the '70s, '80s, '90s and beyond. The show is co-hosted by Matt Herring and Brian LeTendre.