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Articles Home » 1982 Articles » MSG (Michael Schenker Group) - 1982 Assault Attack
 
MSG (Michael Schenker Group) - 1982 Assault Attack



ARTIST: MSG (Michael Schenker Group)
ALBUM: Assault Attack
LABEL: Chrysalis
SERIAL: PCHR 1393
YEAR: 1982
CD REISSUE: 1990, Chrysalis, F2-21393 * 2009, Chrysakis, 50999 6 96555 2 4 (remastered)

COUNTRY OF ORIGIN:

LINEUP: Graham Bonnet - vocals * Michael Schenker - guitars * Chris Glen - bass * Ted McKenna - drums

TRACK LISTING: 01 Assault Attack * 02 Rock You To The Ground * 03 Dancer * 04 Samurai * 05 Desert Song * 06 Broken Promises * 07 Searching For A Reason * 08 Ulcer * 09 Girl From Uptown

WEBLINKS: www.michaelschenkerhimself.com


Background
Despite their rapid demise, this version of MSG manufactured what is perhaps the pick of all the MSG albums, in large part to the appearance of Graham Bonnet, who coming off the success of his 1981 solo effort 'Line Up', had of course performed a similar role in Rainbow; one album and gone. Looking back there was no reason to release Gary Barden, vocalist for 'The Michael Schenker Group' and 'MSG II', except Schenker allegedly didn't consider him to be a household name. Bonnet was, thanks to his Rainbow association, but his brief tenure ended up a well rounded disaster.


The Songs
Despite his erratic tendencies, Schenker was at the peak of his powers musically during this period, Bonnet complimenting the German ace's guitar histrionics with his own vocal supremacy. The title track is well remembered, well developed melodic metal with an AOR edge in the chorus. 'Rock You To The Ground' has an ominously slow crawl, quite the opposite of lone single 'Dancer', radio orientated and catchy, much like Bonnet's Rainbow stint. The metallic side of MSG isn't ignored; check 'Samurai' for Schenker at his finest, laying down riff after riff, chugging along in the finest traditions. 'Desert Song' is an epic, giving The Scorpions a run for their money in the 'China White' stakes. More suggestive are the brazen riffs of 'Broken Promises', a good template for a million 80's hard rockers. Along the lines of Bonnet's Alcatrazz is 'Searching For A Reason', with an admittedly nice riff surging throughout, nothing metal here at all. Thankfully instrumental 'Ulcer' is, giving Schenker a chance to blaze his six strings all the way to glory, a fine showcase of the man's one time domination of his instrument.


In Summary
Schenker and Bonnet reportedly had a famed altercation at a gig shortly after the albums release, and reports differ on what really occurred, what is known is that Bonnet left the band in the middle of a gig and never returned. Barden was re-enlisted and hung around for another studio album, but for Schenker the magic was fading fast. Bonnet immediately formed Alcatrazz, and it's a shame this was all the world heard from this volatile pairing. It was too good to be true wasn't it? At least they mustered up this all time classic.


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Comments
#1 | vinyldinosaurus on March 19 2008 13:02:25
By far my favorite MSG album. Great review! I would further praise the excellent rhythm section of ex SAHB guys Glen and McKenna and the chunky production courtesy of Martin Birch - who was on quite a roll at this time with BOC, Sabbath, and Maiden.
 
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