Friday, January 29, 2016

SCORPIONS-Love At First Sting (1984)


More like 'love at first play', in my case of having my first ever listen to a complete album by this German metal rock band. Before this afternoon, I wasn't even certain if I had even heard anything by these SCORPIONS at all. I did have full knowledge about their existence—for years and years, actually&mash;before I even got this CD. Well, most of that knowledge was contained in the fact I knew they were a metal band that started off strong back in my favorite decade, and that's about it. A brief refresher about the band's history directed my attention to a hit that I hadn't been all too familiar with: "Rock You Like A Hurricane". Took just over a minute into the song and one repetition of the familiar hook in the main chorus before I soon realized it was indeed a golden oldie I'd heard way back somewhere in my yester-years on one of the classic rock radio stations. I surely must've heard "Rock You Like A Hurricane" dozens of times in my lifetime without even realizing that SCORPIONS were the vocal force behind it! 'I wonder what other hits by them I've heard without knowing they were the ones performing it?' I had thought to myself in so many words. There would be no more found here on this particular album, I'd find out, but plenty of brand new memories would be made all throughout this latest stop in my day-long 80's rock music journey nonetheless. Those rock jams where all you need to do is just sit back and bask in the loud instrumental greatness? Well there's at least one of those here called "The Same Thrill" that's a real head-banger! The high-powered tempo and the heavy drum beats makes for an ultra-intense adrenaline rush that becomes amazingly catchy with the guys on backup completing the idea of the lead singer's delivery of the title lyrics by repeating the same four words over and over in the main chorus—'like rock and roll'—and the wild cacophony of instruments that scream into your ears in the closing movements. Now THIS is how you rock n' roll! Then there's the ones here with the big-time hooks that get me pumped: the celebratory vibe of "Big City Nights" being the forerunner, plus "I'm Leaving You" (the catchy high-tech metal sound makes for some great listening and stirs up those fond memories of the 80's rock sound all over again) and "As Soon As The Good Times Roll" (and good times to be had on this one indeed, highlighted by a subtle grooviness about it that draws me into the music like a magnet). Seems my ears keep getting treated to a never-ending flurry of unique music moments during this 80's rock journey. "Crossfire" is one of those, presented almost like a march with the majestic drum beat backing up the loud guitars. And then there's the concluding piece, "Still Loving You", a mellow power ballad that I actually found extremely touching and delightful with its tender, cooled-down delivery; it got stuck to me after so long to the point where I needed to play this gem a second time before I was completely satisfied. So yes, you could say I have gotten stung by these SCORPIONS.....and it really was love at first listen:

1. Bad Boys Running Wild
2. Rock You Like A Hurricane
3. I'm Leaving You
4. Coming Home
5. The Same Thrill
6. Big City Nights
7. As Soon As The Good Times Roll
8. Crossfire
9. Still Loving You

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