Michael Schenker Fest Live Tokyo review
Michael Schenker Fest "Live" Tokyo a new live recording and filmed concert released by inakustik on CD, DVD, Blu-ray and Digital on Friday 24th March 2017 showcases a moment in time and a real celebration of a man's music and talent.
Filmed and recorded at Tokyo’s International Forum on August 24, 2016, this historic concert features guest appearances from vocalists who have worked with Schenker over the years including M.S.G.’S Gary Barden, Graham Bonnet, and Robin McAuley of the McAuley Schenker Group.
Micheal has stated “It's an amazing feeling to have all of my M.S.G. Family from the '80's performing together and especially with Graham Bonnet, who I never got to play any concerts after our Assault Attack album that was originally released in 1982. Fortunately, being able to have the participation of original M.S.G. members such as Gary Barden, Chris Glen (bass) and Ted McKenna (drums) being part of it, and somehow, to perform with Robin McAuley and Steve Mann (guitar, keyboards) again as well, is pretty awesome.”
Unbelievably it is 35 years since the release of One Night At Budokan and a real classic live album that cemented Michael's place at the top table of rock and after career ups and downs it is fantastic to see him in such fine form both musically and health wise too.
Lovingly filmed in front of 5000 rabid fans with a crystal clear sound and picture with all eyes on the man with the Flying V.He lets no one down with a display of guitar playing few can match with his always classic melodic tones and distinct style there for all to see with the set list a fan's dream with classic MSG tunes from all of the era's with vocalist's to match.
The opening Into the Arena sets the scene with Michael in full fast fingered mode from the word go and his band clearly having a ball with huge smiles everywhere especially Chris Glen on bass.
Gary Barden leads us through a wonderful Attack Of The Mad Axeman,Victim Of Illusion,Cry For The Nations,Let Sleeping Dogs Lie and Armed And Ready and although not able to hit the notes from yore the lower key he sings helps him through.
Next up is Graham Bonnet who's unmistakable vocals takes us through Assault Attack,Desert Song and Dancer from their brief sojourn that was cut short so many yaers ago.
For me the highlight is seeing Robin Mcauley sing This Is My Heart,Save Yourself and Love Is Not A Game from the period of 1987-1992 from their 3 albums recorded together when the Schenker template was moved into a more melodic style that suited Mcauley's vocal prowess and he sounds superb.
Mcauley carries on through UFO classics Shoot Shoot and a 15 minute Rock Bottom giving Michael plenty of time to improvise and delight the fans before the inevitable finale in Doctor Doctor sees all 3 vocalists join Michael and his band and bringing a fantastic evening to a close.
When live albums are as lovingly put together as this all housed in a black box with booklet on blu ray,2cd/dvd it captures a night to remember and one that many Michael fans across the globe would love to have seen themselves.