1983 and here come’s UFO with a new album in tow and a young Deke’s at the time (16 years old) ready to pick it up as I had loved 1982’s Mechanix release!
But upon my first inspection of the back cover of this album is something or someone is missing! That’s right folk’s Bassist Pete Way is gone or in UFO lingo “Long Gone”
Yup. No sign of Pete or his long-necked Gibson Thunderbird Bass! Instead its a live shot of what’s left of UFO that being Phil Mogg/Andy Parker/Neil Carter and Paul Chapman!
Pete left UFO didn’t like the direction the band was headed into.
So Pete hooked up with Fast Eddie(Motorhead RIP) and formed Fastway(brilliant name), but Pete left that act quickly than joined Ozzy’s band for about a week(ha) before Pete decided to create his own group Waysted(another brilliant band name) later that week!
So in the meantime…
So what does UFO do? Well, they keep it in-house as Neil and Paul did all the Bass on the studio tracks to keep the UFO boat afloat!
I will add that the first three tracks on this album Blinded By A Lie/Diesel in the Dust/A Fool For Love are brilliant!
UFO somewhat got with the times in regards to the sound of the early ’80s but I will add that the chorus off Blinded by a Lie is simply F’in brilliant! Money Shot.
Neil Carter basically saves this album from hitting the wall. Neil stepped up and co-wrote 9 songs with Mogg while Chapman chipped in with a couple of co-writes himself!
Another brilliant track on Making Contact is Side 2 opener The Way The Wild Wind Blows. UFO always In my humble opinion knew how to mix the Keyboards and Guitars exceptionally well without going into that whole Journey Jon Cain Sap Trap that ruled the airwaves in the ’80s! Nope UFO did have Keys but Neil Carter knew what the role was and would let the guitars rock when they needed to rock!
Considering what was going on around in UFO at the time it’s incredible this album was actually made.
Kudos to Carter/Moog and Chapman for getting it done in the studio but the tour promoting this album was a mess as UFO hired 4 stringer wanker Rando from some obscure band from Buffalo called Talas? Anyone heard of them?
The wrong dude to be playing flash n dash Bass in the sound of a group that had a no-frills but keep a simple bass player in Way!
Too bad as this band self-destructed on some stage in Poland I believe and that was that for this incarnation.
Chapman joined up with Pete in Waysted. Carter went off and joined Gary Moores band and as he said: “finally started seeing some money!”
Mogg chilled out for a bit but resurrected UFO with Paul Raymond RIP(who Neil had replaced in UFO) in 1985 and continued UFO until this year when they announced a farewell tour as Moog is 70 years young!
Making Contact is nowhere near the best UFO album, but there are some brilliant tracks worth hearing. While the album does lag a bit at times, give them credit for picking up their bootstraps and getting out there and doing it one last time!
Update: I had written this review a little ways back, and Keyboard/Guitarist Paul Raymond has since passed away! Since UFO is on its Farewell Tour and wanted to continue, they have recruited Neil Carter to finish out the tour which to me is a great move!