Tuesday, July 2, 2013

Two for Tuesday - Bits o' Metal!

Hello? Ok, we’re back…new month, new Two for Tuesday series. This one is inspired by my love of That Metal Show, your home for all things hard rock and heavy metal. I’ve been going through a resurgence of heavier stuff the past few years, initially as a nostalgia thing, but now just thoroughly enjoying it to the point of exploring some of the new acts out there. We’ll look into some of those later, but for now let’s jump back a bunch of years and to another continent.

I think I’ve mentioned my fondness for German group Scorpions and particularly their earlier stuff from the 70s. Their first long-time lead guitarist was Uli Jon Roth, one of the proponents of neo-classical metal and inventor of the Sky Guitar. He was with Scorpions from ’74-’77, participating in four albums, writing several classic tunes, delivering some great solos and even some lead vocals. None of the songs from this era are ones you’ll likely hear on even hard rock or hair metal stations, but they certainly set the stage for signature tunes to come and the universal success that Scorpions would enjoy in the 80s. After leaving Scorpions, Roth formed Electric Sun, which released three great albums of sometimes straightforward, sometimes experimental guitar rock, and after that he began composing classical music…none of which I’ve heard, but I’m sure it, you know, rocks.

Anyway, here’s a couple of standouts for me, the title track from Scorpion’s 1976 album Virgin Killer, written by Roth with some insane vocals from Klaus Meine and a blistering solo from Roth. Also, here’s my current favorite (it changes with each listen) from Electric Sun’s Earthquake (1979), the rockin’ Sundown.