Michael Schenker Group: Universal-2022.

McAuley Schenker Group

Guitars (1987-1993, 2012-present)

Michael Schenker Group

Guitars (lead) (1979-1986, 1992-present)

Michael Schenker’s Temple of Rock

Guitars (lead) (2011-present)

2011Temple of RockGuitars
2012Temple of Rock – Live in Europe (Live album)Guitars (lead)
2013Bridge the GapGuitars (rhythm, lead)
2015Spirit on a MissionGuitars (rhythm, lead)
2016On a Mission: Live in Madrid (Live album)Guitars (lead)

Contraband

Guitars

Copernicus

Guitars

Michael Schenker Fest

Guitars (2016-?)

2017Live: Tokyo International Forum Hall A (Live album)Guitars
2018ResurrectionVocals (backing) (tracks 8, 9), Guitars
2019RevelationGuitars

Scorpions

Guitars (1969-1973, 1978-1979)

1972Lonesome CrowVocals (backing), Guitars (lead)
1979Lovedrive (Single)Guitars (lead)
1979Another Piece of Meat (Single)Guitars (lead) (track 1)
1979Holiday / Always Somewhere (Single)Guitars (lead) (track 1)
1979LovedriveGuitars (lead) (tracks 1, 2, 4, 7, 8)
1979Loving You Sunday Morning / Coast to Coast (Single)Guitars (lead)
1980Monsters of Rock (Split)Guitars (lead) (track 3)
1984+ Heavy (Split)Guitars

UFO

Guitars (1973-1978, 1993-1995, 1997-1998, 2000, 2001-2004)

TRACK LIST: Emergency * Under Attack * Calling Baal * A King Has Gone * The Universe * Long Long Road * Wrecking Ball * Yesterday Is Dead * London Calling * Sad Is The Song * Au Revoir * Turn Off The World * Fighter (bonus track).

One thought on “Michael Schenker Group: Universal-2022.

  1. In just over a week Michael Schenker’s new album will be upon us. Schenker of course is a legend, and whether you saw him back in the 80’s or rather more recently, then you’ll know that his relationship with the guitar is unsurpassed. There are few who have influenced as many, few with the kind of songs behind him he has, and few that thirty years after what some might call his peak is still producing the kind of material he is. Indeed after some great outings in recent years with Michael Schenker Fest albums Resurrection (2018) and Revelation (2019), the new official Michael Schenker Group album ‘Universal’ (the follow up to 2021’s ‘Immortal’) is all rather wonderful, keeping up the quality of recent years.

    Interestingly although Ronnie Romero features on vocals here and is scheduled for the US dates later in the year it’s notable that Robin McAuley stepped in to cover most of the European dates on the 50th Anniversary Universal Tour earlier in the year. If I’m honest whist Ronnie is a real talent (and his work with Rainbow and Vandenberg is wonderful) and of course a young face looks great on tour he’s only part of a wonderful line up that includes Michael Kiske (Helloween) and Ralf Scheepers (Primal Fear), drummers Simon Phillips (Toto, The Who), Brian Tichy (Whitesnake, Foreigner), Bobby Rondinelli (Rainbow) and Bodo Schopf (Eloy), as well as legendary bassists Bob Daisley (Black Sabbath), Barry Sparks (Malmsteen, Dokken) and Barend Courbois (Blind Guardian, Zakk Wylde), with Tom Carey as a very special guest. Part of me of course wants to hear what McAuley sounds like singing these new songs after his wonderful recent solo vocals and with ‘Black Swan’.
    Working again with producer Michael Voss seems to be at last part of the magic here “Michael Voss is happy to wait until I have worked out an idea and takes the time to really get to know the song, simultaneously developing ideas for the vocals,” Schenker describes the fruitful collaboration which has one cog intermesh with the other. “Then we work out the drums, bass and some keyboard parts together. He always has plenty of great ideas up his sleeve.”

    If you’ve enjoyed Schenker’s recent output as I have then you’ll love this. In fact if you like the albums I’ve name-checked so far then like me you light even find this edges the others. Opening with the brooding ‘Emergency’ and the more melodic build of ‘Under Attack’ there’s a defined retro sound that pitches you nicely into the mid-eighties. And after that intro we find ourselves face to face with what some are even citing as one of Schenker’s most important tracks in recent years…

    “The rock anthem ‘A King Has Gone’ and its intro ‘Calling Baal’ both have a special significance: The track, sung by Helloween frontman Michael Kiske, is a tribute to the immortal Ronnie James Dio, in particular to his performance on the 1976 hard rock classic Rainbow Rising. For this reason, Schenker has brought together an original Rainbow rhythm section consisting of Bobby Rondinelli and Bob Daisley, additionally enlisting keyboardist Tony Carey, who also played on Rainbow Rising, for a terrific Moog synth intro – a direct reference to the iconic intro of the 1976 album opener ‘Tarot Woman’. The impressive result ‘Calling Baal’/‘A King Has Gone’ is already considered to be one of the most important and successful songs in Schenker’s career to date, both musically and lyrically.”

    Indeed it’s hard not to be impressed even just at the sentiment let alone the reassembling of the musicians who made such a wonderful album, but the song itself and its preceding intro have a wonderful passion and the sort of keyboard and guitar interplay that made albums like ‘Rising’ timeless. It’s a wonderful tribute.
    ‘The Universe’ has the hard act of following that and rather go full pelt we instead land in a soft ballad that sees Gary Barden and Ronnie Romero share a duet ‘Long Long Road’ has an initial feel of Thunderstruck with the smooth vocal driving it forward majestically. And if your love the vocals of Ralph Scheepers then you’re in for a real treat with ‘Wrecking Ball’ a real highlight here and the most driven offering so far – this one will sizzle live!

    The final four might even edge it – first ‘Yesterday is Dead’ comes as a nice gritty headbanger before ‘London Calling (No not the Clash song – imagine that!) pays homage to the 80’s UK rock bands that put Hard Rock in the mainstream, it’s a great song and very reminiscent of Scorpions. ‘Sad is the Song’ that follows is more statuesque and definitely gives off a Rainbow vibe especially in the verses which are vaguely Eastern and the guitar work. The final word goes to the red hot fretwork of ‘Au Revoir’ the paciest fretwork offering here and another of the best. As they say, it’s a nice way to say see you later…

    The album features two bonus tracks: ‘Turn Off the World’ which with that opening guitar is actually one of my favourites on the album a stomping mid-tempo rocker that comes with a message and is hard to see how it only made it as a bonus cut. The second bonus ‘Fighter’ is a mid-tempo rocker that would be worth inclusion just for the solo! There’s no slowing Michael down these days and here’s yet another treat for fans.

    therockpit.net

    Mark Diggins.

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