Release: 02/03/18 – Label: Nuclear Blast
The first studio album from MICHAEL SCHENKER FEST entitled Resurrection, released earlier this year on Nuclear Blast Records. Co-produced by the legendary UFO axeman Schenker and Michael Voss-Schoen (Helter Skelter), Ressurection see’s not only Michael Schenker himself but the three M.S.G. vocalists Gary Barden, Graham Bonnet and Robin McAuley, you can also hear Doogie White from ‘Michael Schenker’s Temple of Rock’ as well as veteran musicians Steve Mann on guitars and keyboards, Ted McKenna on drums and Chris Glen handling bass duties. In addition, the album features a number of guest appearances including Kirk Hammett (Metallica) and long-term Schenker collaborator Wayne Findlay.
Since it’s announcement the question was how would such a star-studded and ambitious album come off? Well, Schenker is no stranger to putting together a grandiose rock album and this latest body of work stands out on its own whilst retaining the distinctive Schenker style that made the guitarist as famous as he is today. With the number of large names on the bill, there would have been a real danger of ego’s clashing on the record but if they did it doesn’t show on the record at all. It’s a modest yet punchy record with stand out tracks like ‘Take Me To The Church’, a feel-good track that evokes pure, old-school stadium rock vibes, ‘Night Moods’ follows and brings the pace down somewhat but still hits home with its feel-good vibe and insanely catchy hooks. ‘Everest’ brings with it an almost thrash feel, steady double kicks accompanied by harmonious vocals and a Bay-Area styled lead riff.
Other tracks of considerable note are ‘The Girl With Stars In Her Eyes’ and ‘Time Knows When It’s Time’. This isn’t to say that there is any filler on the album as each track holds it’s own in the grand scheme of the setlist. Every track on this record would entertain a live crowd as much as any classic from the glory days of rock and metal and with a European tour lined up for later in the year I’m sure such a thing will occur.
The album works on many levels, it’s something you can easily throw on in the car, or whilst you go about your business at home, at the same time it can be cranked up at a party or club night and each time it fits and suits the purpose, a rare thing with modern albums, especially those of super-groups, usually only consisting of one or two big tunes with the remainder of the record propping it up, this is not the case here, marking Resurrection amongst the most robust rock albums out there.
‘Ressurection’ is recommended for anyone with an appreciation for bands such as W.A.S.P, Def Leopard and Voodoo Circle. Overall a well polished and tight, pure rock album has been expertly crafted by Schenker and company that is more than worth your time and attention. Check out Nuclear Blast’s bio page for tour dates and previews of the entire album and be sure to pick up a (psychical) copy.