sony bmg, 2007
it’s always nice to know that, after a long hiatuses of strong efforts, our old favorite band has finally came up with a new output that sounds as fresh and great as their bests. this latest album from scorpions might not close to that. but knowing that they sound bigger, and with every confidence they can made, it’s a pleasantly enjoyable, after all.
i can say so because, when i finally got this album, i didn’t expect i’d get a package of songs that really have enough power to move me; to make me spin more and more, to say the least. it’s been a long time since the last i enjoyed the germany outfit. my choice of best-ever album(s) came from their 1970s-1980s era; i really like fly to the rainbow and in trance. (the only exception is probably 1990’s crazy world.) and in my opinion their mighty has since been maintained obviously by their legend from that period.
well, up to the release of this album –which they produced with the help from desmond child, a prominent songwriter whose previous works including ricky martin’s hit livin’ la vida loca. klaus meine (vocals), matthias jabs (guitars), rudolf schenker (guitars), pawel maciwoda (bass) and james kottak (drums) have apparently made a right decision by returning to their “old virtue” –not nostagically, though.
the result is an album in which the music sounds fabulously developed: it’s rocking, it’s heavy, but it also has crisp melodies and a lot of flavor. and good thing is: the band delves into the loss of humanism, a relatively brooding theme (by scorpions standards) but it’s something that we ultimately can’t afford to let it unnoticed.
as for the music, in my first listening, i’m surprised even from the intro i heard in the opening track hour 1. not only the riff is groovy and alive. but the guitar sound is so… big and fat; it has the “modern” touch compare to what we’ve already heard from their previous efforts. and as i went through it, where meine sings verses like “human nature is the reason/for our downfall/and we deserve it playing god/with our machines/our religions are a prison/that’s our fatal flaw…”, the music grew on me faster than i would’ve expected.
and hour 1 really sets the mood for the whole work. great hooks, strong riff, and powerful, charismatic voice of meine, all are constantly intact. no disappointment whatsoever.
while it’s easy to say that there’s no filler, it’s on the contrary when it comes to choose songs that are distinguished. but if i have to mentioned them, my favorite list would have to include (1) the game of life, a superb melodic hard rocker; (2) the future never dies, a wonderful ballad with a grandiose final, it’s genuinely scorpions; (3) you’re lovin’ me to death; (4) we will rise again, more metal mood with occasionally calm tones; and (5) humanity, perhaps the finest moment of the album.
having listened to the album several times during last weekend, i have to admit that scorpions, with their passionate performance, made me believe that they can still give their best shot. we never know if this is the indication of their long expected “renaissance”, though.