SCORPIONS - BLACKOUT

POLYDOR

 

Metal To Infinity

Just when I’ve purchased the classic ones “In Trance”, “Virgin Killer” and “Taken By Force” on CD I heard the news that Scorpions will retire in a few years. Their last world tour is planned and a new album will be released soon but after it the definite end  will be there. Believe me when I say an unpleasant cold shiver made part of me reading this news… Why? Well, I grew up with Scorpions and they were one of the reasons I became forever a Metal fan. I’m into Metal thanks to albums like “Killers” (Iron Maiden), “Strangers In The Night” (UFO), “Assault Attack” (MSG)… and Scorpions’ “Blackout”. I really can’t tell how many times I’ve listened to this particular album in my younger years and I admit it hurts reading one of my old time favorite bands will forever leave the scène. 

When I read the news I immediately took  “Blackout” out of my collection because in my opinion it is the best album the band have ever released. Even more; this was and still is one of the best Heavy Metal albums of the early Eighties. As far as I remember my very first Metal shirt was with the front of this record. Scorpions chose the path of a more melodic kind of Metal and later on they became world famous because of it. Their ballads like “Still Loving You”, “Send Me An Angel” and “Wind Of Change” became major hits in the worldwide top charts. To be honest Scorpions lost my soul in the time they were in the POP-charts; I really couldn’t stand it. I prefer the old tunes; the Seventies and early Eighties sound of the band. I’m more into songs like “In trance”, “He’s A Woman, She’s A Man”, “The Zoo”, “Rock You Like A Hurricane” and the entire “Blackout” album. 

At BNR Metal pages there’s a tournament is going on, giving the readers the chance to point the best Metal album ever. I was glad to see Scorpions’ “Blackout” was chosen to compete with so many other classic ones! It means this album deserves its place in the history of Heavy Metal.   

“Blackout”, the opening track, was a typical Metal song for this period. It might sound soft for the youngsters now but in the early eighties we crushed our neck by banging on this kind of songs! Scorpions have already contained great musicians. In “Blackout” and the hard hitting “Can’t live without you” you can hear fantastic guitar parts, on this album by Rudolf Schenker and Matthias Jabs. “Can’t Live Without You” is one of those songs have that kind of irresistible power to play the imaginary guitar and I believe it’s no coincidence Scorpions is singing about it in this particular track!  

“No One Like You” is another classic one, breathing such an amazing atmosphere and I admit I’m becoming nostalgic because of it! Klaus Meine’s nasal vocal sound fits the song perfect and I can’t imagine another singer with a similar vocal sound! His voice is clean but oh so special, so typical for the band! Klaus Meine has always been the perfect front man for Scorpions and I believe no one has ever cared about his German accent. “You Give Me All I Need” is another song that brings me in the right mood and the solo in this track is one of my all time favorite guitar solos! The sound but especially the emotional way the strings are pulled in this lead are just godlike! One of the heaviest songs Scorpions have ever written is also available on this album, “Now”.  

In the old times we needed to turn our vinyl disc after this song to listen to the B-side of this album. Only therefore I am glad with the invention of the CD although I miss my vinyl albums… Anyway the band brings us “Dynamite” next which is another pretty heavy song. As far as I remember the band used to play this song during every gig. Scorpions have always been a typical live band and I’m quite sure that people who ever witnessed their shows will never forget them! Scorpions stands for energy , delivering pure adrenaline... on stage the band is pure dynamite! 

“Arizona” might be the only track on this release that really never received as much attention as the rest of the songs and that’s a pity because it is fantastic. Nevertheless the best song to me is, without any doubts, “China White”. What a mighty track! If you don’t know this one you should forgive me that I’m not able to compare it with any other Metal song. This is something special because it contains a very melancholic atmosphere! Without being doom the rhythm is very slow and seducing! Just listen to it;  it can’t be a problem finding it on the Internet. Typical for the Scorpions is to end their album with a ballad. On this one we can find “When The Smoke Is Going Down” and I still consider it as the best Scorpions ballad ever written. 

Scorpions became immense popular in the Metal scène after this release and their follow-up album “Love at first sting” was responsible for the world wide - mainstream - breakthrough. In that period Germany already contained great Metal bands but Scorpions was without any doubt the biggest amongst them all, the only band that was able to become successful besides the Metal scène.  

Youngsters and people who are ignorant about Metal often consider Scorpions as a Classic Rock band but they aren’t! This classic album proves that Scorpions deserves its place in the history of Heavy Metal and they even belong to the biggest bands ever. They were responsible for some important pages in the book of Heavy Metal and were without any doubts influencing for plenty of bands later on!  

My Points: 100 / 100 (Review by Officer Nice)

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