Is it possible to fall in love all over again with the same ol' songs that are played all the time at show after show and we hear time and time again on classic radio? That's a resounding HELL YEAH!!
First, let me say it was nice to hear Klaus Meine sing the entirety of the songs. Usually in a LIVE show, he has the audience help quite a bit. This is okay, because that's what the fans love to do and what Klaus loves to hear. But, it was refreshing hearing his voice throughout the whole CD. Second, let me say, the man with the bionic voice has never sounded better. He is in rare form and I love hearing these classics in his current voice, which barely sounds any different than his golden years. It's a superb feeling, hearing that incredible signature primal snarl once again on the rockers and then to turn around and hear that soft velvet voice, such as on Still Loving You, almost like he's whispering in your ear. It's like silk on skin. Hey, remember guys, I am a woman and call it like I hear it.
One thing I did ask myself at one point while listening to No One Like You was; is it LIVE or is it Memorex? For those too young to remember the commercial; it was an ad about a Memorex cassette tape being played up against the real singer and they asked in the ad, "is it LIVE or is it Memorex?" Okay, well, that is what I asked at first. Some of the guitar parts, especially the solos, were so exact, that I really wondered for a minute if the original guitar parts had literally been dubbed into the current song or did these guys actually channel their early years and remained so true to the originals that I really couldn't tell. However, I can assure you with certainty, that these songs have been redone, no dubbing included. Just listen and you can hear the difference between the new songs and the classic songs; there's a maturity, a more polished and refined sound, if you will. I also love the heavier sound they put to them; Rhythm of Love for instance. That really rocks. I am, to say the least, very impressed and am excited as hell over this CD. I still can't get over how Klaus sounds, and how Matthias attacks the Lead and James adding a fresh beat to the mix. I love the dual guitars, as usual the seamless mix of Schenker's and Jabs' guitar playing that is so cultured after all these years, gives it such a fine balance. I also want to say that I don't believe for a minute that Matthias or Rudolf would stand for dubbing the old guitars onto their new CD. They are proud of their abilities and so therefore, I am convinced that they are redoing these songs. Additionally, even though James and Pawel weren't members at the time of these classics, I have to say they hold their own. For the seasoned diehard Scorps fan, they can hear the difference in James' style compared to Herman's. And yet, James has added his own character, along with Pawel's bottom bass to make them new sounding. And they sound gooood! And I will always love Rudolf's rhythm guitar and his leads of course. He's so accomplished.
The other half of the CD is covers. Who ever thought they would do several covers on their album? Yeah sure, they have done covers before, but not to this extent.
I love Tainted Love. The way Klaus and the boys made it their own without losing the originality of the song, was most inspiring. Most of the time, when a band records covers, they make it so much their own, they screw up the song. Not so with Scorps. They probably realized how many times THEIR songs were covered and screwed up, so didn't want to make the same mistake. The lead solo by Matthias using that tremolo is a fantastic composition. And James' drums are hard driving fantastic!
Children of the Revolution is one heavy riffed song and it's one to really get into. It's heavier than what Scorpions have done in quite some time. Even though it was a cover, I was glad to hear Klaus' ability to still sing with that much strength. James is slamming out that beat that is so his form. And do we even have to mention the guitars? LOVE that heavy metal sound. But, guess what you hear at the end; that unmistakable signature sound of Matthias Jabs. If you were to listen to the original by T. Rex, you would find that there is no comparison. Scorpions killed this one and put the original to shame! I would love to see them add this to their final 2012-13 tour!
The choice of Across the Universe was a surprise to me as I have so many others in mind from The Beatles they could have done. But that's not my call. Listen, I'm not really complaining it's just not one of my favorite Beatle songs. Klaus, as usual, does it justice though, with that caressing smoothness of his voice, making the song so very much his own.
Tin Soldier starts out sort of poppy, but then suddenly it gets very "Scorpionized". It's almost like THEY wrote and did this song already. I liked it because of that familiar feeling of Golden Days Scorps. Actually, I'm really liking this song a lot.
All Day and All of the Night is fun for me because it's one I have loved since way back when. And for my favorite band to redo it is a double treat. What I find consistent in these covers is that they don't change it up so drastically that it loses the original sound. And yet Scorps still make it their own by adding to the songs, such things as, Matthias' distinguished lead guitar sound that put him in the annals of one of the best guitar players in the 80's, and what gave Scorpions their unique sound, and the inimitable, distinct raucous voice of the one and only Klaus Meine are still there. Of course there is James giving his own flavor along with Rudolf and Pawel. Other than that, the songs remain the same.
I like how they begin Ruby Tuesday. I couldn't quite put my finger on the guitar intro and why it sounded so familiar until I went and replayed both The Best Is Yet to Come and The Good Die Young intros. Yep, there it was that feeling of the two sort of mixed together for the Ruby Tuesday intro. I agree with a friend of mine who said the boys do this far better than the great Rolling Stones. Scorpions do this song such justice, Stones should be proud. Matthias does quick little licks that are so characteristic; it's such a pleasure to hear this little bit of Scorps in an infamous cover song.
I highly recommend this excellently done CD. It's a wonderful trip into a classical rock tour; from their originals to covers that they excelled at in their execution. By the way, I put this on my MP3 player because I love listening to these splendid works in my ear while making people wonder why I have such a silly grin on my face.
I want to end with this; I may have given Klaus and Matthias many kudos, but without the entire team, the stability of the Scorps machine with Klaus, Rudolf, Matthias, James, and Pawel, this would not have sounded as good. And even though there are new members that did not do these songs back in the day, it still turned out first-rate. So I say kudos to all of them.
Buy this now!!!