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Electric Ballroom, Camden,London 10 March 2004

A decent sized crowd, some 500 plus, considering it was a midweek gig. First up were Hurricane Party, who I’d seen early last year but in a very different style. They now have a new vocalist and more hair than a hairdresser’s convention! I was taken back in time to the 80’s when Warrant, Dokken, Poison et al ruled the roost. They have a very confident singer and some good tunes including soon-to-be single ‘Crown of Thorns’ - a catchy little number. ‘Liar’ had a guitar riff lifted straight of the Sweet’s ‘Teenage Rampage’ and another number was very AC/DC in sound. Many of the crowd seemed to enjoy them and who knows after the runaway success of the Darkness this band maybe next for lift-off.

So to the main event - Firstly I must admit to not having heard much MSG bar the last album, which is very good and a couple of early albums, shame on me. The band kicked off with all guns blazing and Rev the bassist was a whirlwind on stage, twirling his two long ponytails all night. Plenty to put a smile on UFO fans faces including ‘Mother Mary’, a storming ‘Too Hot To Handle’ and ‘Only You Can Rock Me’. Vocalist Chris Logan has a tough job as he has to sing so many tunes originally done by other vocalists but he pulls it off in style. Plenty of MSG delights as well including ‘Attack of the Mad Axeman’, ‘Assault Attack’, ‘Rock ‘n’ Roll Believer’ and the superb title track of the new album ‘Arachnophobiac’. Schenker of course did some soloing ably assisted by drummer Barry Holmes, the mad bassist, and Wayne Findley on guitar/keys. The audience were loving it and with classics like these being aired you’d have to be dead not too!

Encore time saw Schenker’s sons join him on guitar for ‘Doctor Doctor’ and the show ended with ‘Rock Bottom’. An excellent performance and hopefully this will convince Michael Schenker that he does still have fans desperate to see him perform live (especially in the US!), as well as boost his confidence.

PS Loved the backline created by Batttttty & her SITN fellows - a modern masterpiece that advertised the main man’s website.

Review: Jason Ritchie

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