Micheal Schenker splits from UFO and puts together back in 1980 a first for me and that would be the word Supergroup!
Ok maybe not the ultimate supergroup per se. But at the time snagging the Late Great Cozy Powell(RIP) as well as bringing along ex-UFO homeboy Paul Raymond were names I knew. Basssit Chris Glenn (Alex Harvey Band) and a singer I had never heard of and that would be Gary Barden round out MSG,
A fellow I went to Highschool with named Pizza Thief ( a long story which I have written about before) bought this album on import and when I heard it for the first time(1982) It blew my mind!
All the songs on here are pure gold as when MSG hit Japan in 1981 they recorded a Double Live Entree at the famous Budokan…
One Night At The Budokan has some of Micheal’s most excellent songwriting and guitar playing! When you have Cozy Powell backing you up and slamming those drums into submission behind you it gets no better than that!
I love the opening of this album as you here the opening classical taped music being drowned out by a power blast of sonic chaos of MSG and they head right into Armed & Ready. Schenker is on fire right out of the gate and his playing is flawless on this album.
Micheal had one album out at the time (The Micheal Schenker Group-1980) so when MSG headed to Japan after recording their second album the brilliant MSG(1981). The new album hadn’t been released yet but most of it was played that August night back in 81!
Attack of the Mad Axman is one of my fav’s from the Mikey catalogue as vocalist Gary Barden sings the tale of the Axman sneaking around the back streets and what not but where this song picks up total steam is at the end as Powell and Schenker lift off and Micheal solo’s like there is no tomorrow! Pure class….
Like the feel of this album as you can hear them tuning between tracks as Barden intro’s the next song…
13 tracks on the original release! Cry For The Nations/On And On/But I Want More just to name a few and when this album was expanded in 2009 the 11 minute Cozy Powell drum solo was added as were a few instrumentals…..
Having x-UFO sidekick Raymond along for the ride adding rhythm guitar/keys and backing vocals was an added plus. Never Trust A Stranger is the lone like ballad on this album (written by Raymond) yet once again Powell drives the engine that pushes this tune along nicely and not wussing it out…
Speaking of UFO the great Doctor Doctor track is the lone leftover UFO track that MSG play rather relying on their two studio albums release’s to let people know they were here to stay…
Ummm,yeah about that here to stay part….
Sadly this band imploded right after this release….
Raymond left to form Waysted with another X-UFO’er Pete Way. Gary Barden as well left to be replaced by Graham Bonnet for Micheals excellent 1982 release Assault Attack. Cozy Powell left after an argument in the demo stages of Assault Attack while Bassist Chris Glenn was the only fella to remain with Micheal!
Make no mistake though as when it comes to Budokan albums everyone and their dog knows about Cheap Tricks Budokan but if you’re wanting to dive into some other Budokan albums check this one out!
For myself I can listen to this album still to this day! There is not a dud track on here. MSG is an awesome listen. Period!
How many times have I been Schenked!
First got this recorded on cassette tape courtesy of Pizza Thief(1982). Purchased on single CD in 1992(found it in Winnipeg) Bought the deluxe version on iTunes(2009)