Michael Schenker ... a name which still inspires grins of delight amongst fans of first-class hard guitar rock! The list of his successes is an extensive one, after all. As a young man he lent his very special sound, together with his brother Rudolf, to the Scorpions, which later made the band one of the first real international hard rock stars from Germany. In the 70s, he similarly helped the British rock legends U.F.O. to their definitive breakthrough, turning songs like 'Rock Bottom' or 'Doctor, Doctor' into hits everyone knows.
Briefly returning to the familiar fold of the Scorpions, Michael's collaboration helped create possibly their best their album, 'Lovedrive', which includes the perennial ballads 'Holiday', 'Loving You Sunday Morning' and 'Always Somewhere'. In 1980 it was time for the blonde guitarist to go it alone and form the first band of his own, the Michael Schenker Group, or MSG for short. This is where some of the world's best musicians gathered, cavorting with founding members such as Gary Barden, Don Airey or Simon Phillips. Not forgetting that no one less that Roger Glover from Deep Purple manned the production console for the first record. Since then, the three letters MSG have become a synonym for honest, hand-crafted and impelling premium hard rock. The band leader has consistently demonstrated the highest level of creativity and pluck, also presenting his elaborate compositions acoustically, with and without his band. His career hit a new peak last year in Tokyo, where he gave a sold-out concert to celebrate the 30-year anniversary of the band, a concert which has been released by in-akustik as a double CD, DVD and Blu-ray disc.
Now, after extensive touring, which also saw the band perform in the USA, and following a well-earned rest, Michael Schenker has returned with his group to add a new jewel to his creative work. And he has produced so many surprises that your senses will be overwhelmed! These surprises bring together Michael Schenker's past AND present perfectly. The old times are reflected in many of the guitarist's contemporaries from the various epochs. Names such as Pete Way, Wayne Findlay, Neil Murray or Chris Slade still represent the highest of standards and get the aficionados' heartbeats racing. One of the biggest treats is his collaboration with the former Scorpions drummer, Herman 'the German' Rarebell, as well as his beloved brother Rudolf, on several of the songs. Michael has kept his promise of the 'Schenker Brothers'. The fact that Michael not only plays the guitar on 'Scene of Crime', but also the flute as well, will raise quite a few eyebrows. Let's be honest: who would ever have thought that there would ever be another collaboration with Robin McAuley? 'Lover's Sinfony' makes many a fan of their most successful period as the 'McAuley and Schenker Group' feel that their dream has come true as well. And yet the list is even longer – Doogie White (former member of the Rainbow), Super drummer Carmine Appice or Elliott Tichy have also left their musical calling cards. Nevertheless, one name is missing in 2011, that being Gary Barden. The new voice on the microphone is, however, more than 'just' a replacement, because during the last MSG tour, Michael Voss showed impressively just what he is capable of. The experienced producer and singer really doesn't need to prove anything to anyone, because his successes with Mad Max, Casanova or Silver, among others, speak volumes. And his voice is outstandingly suited to the punchy and compelling new tracks on 'Temple of Rock'. Whether listening to the unadorned, melodious hard rock exemplified by 'Saturday Night' or 'How Long', as well as bluesy sounds such as those on 'With You' – the new album is largely distinguished by an immense enthusiasm for playing the guitar, its rich variety and the participation of international superstars. This album will finally induct MSG into the 'Temple of Rock'!
Michael Schenker says:
'The Temple of Rock is within me where I create since I was introduced to the amazing invention of the distorted Guitar which is for me the most enjoyable and the best possible way to express myself. The Rock Guitar Sound that I fell in love with, mostly expressed as Lead break, is what I have nurtured and treasured all of my life. Combined with the infinite spring from within and the amazing musicians around me I keep expressing an ongoing development of my Art(Being). With Temple of Rock I am entering a new stage of my life, a new level of existence enjoying life more than ever, reaping the joy of all sorts of developments from the past.
Also, it seems to me that collectively, with true expressive makers of Rock Music, we have been building the external Temple Of Rock for many years and have now come to the point of putting on the roofing and celebrating the almost completion of the Temple. All generations of this period are meeting all over the world on one stage it seems celebrating an Era of 'Hand Made Rock' which will never be the same again due to invention of new technology but of course New Temples and New Wonders will arise to enjoy expressions in new ways.'