UFO – Obsession [Japan Forever Young Series remastered +3] HQ
Many of you asked for more ‘classic UFO‘. Chrysalis Records recently released deluxe editions (featured at 0dayrox) of Phenomenon (1974) and Force It (1975) during the las three years, but still not for following albums.
So now we have here 1978’s ”Obsession” in its Japanese ‘Japan Forever Young Series’ edition remastered including bonus tracks.
”Obsession” is the last Seventies UFO album with Michael Schenker… but what a great way to say ‘hasta la vista baby’.
When the band’s previous album ‘Lights Out’ secured a top 30 placing in the American album charts, and world tours sold out as fast as tickets could be put on sale, the band’s future was assured. Capitalising on their new found success, the band relocated to Los Angeles and set about recording ”Obsession’ with (once again) talented producer Ron Nevison and engineer Mike Clink (a man who would later harness the filth and fury of Guns ”N Roses) at the helm.
This richly crafted record once again demonstrated the band’s unique ability to fuse intense hard rock with elements of an altogether more cerebral nature. Many cite ”Obsession” as the pinnacle of the band’s creative prowess; rounded, complete and universally praised.
This is, without a doubt, one of the finest classic hard rock albums ever recorded. Vocalist Phil Mogg’s intensely crypto-caustic lyrics, coupled with their penchant for inventive melody and tight arrangements, crafted an album that has dated not one jot. Thinking man’s metal was the catch phrase of the day and revisiting this record. 45 years on there is still no better description.
No less than five of UFO’s best songs call ”Obsession” home: “Only You Can Rock Me,” “Lookin’ Out For No. 1,” “Hot ‘n’ Ready,” “Cherry,” and “Born to Lose” — and not a single track of the other six is a dud. Virtually this entire LP could be called a “greatest hits” package.
Although this is undoubtedly a total band effort, it’s probably Michael Schenker that shines brightest on ”Obsession”. Schenker’s playing runs the gamut, from pleasant, almost Medieval acoustic licks (“Arbory Hill”, where he does some flute as well) to take-no-prisoners riffing on “Pack It Up,” “Ain’t No Baby” and “Hot ‘n’ Ready.”
“Ain’t No Baby,” another of my favorite tracks, is a rock-solid track that begins slowly and sweetly… then kicks into high gear with a growling, bottom-heavy riff and some truly remarkable and melodic background vocals on the chorus. Brilliant.
“Looking Out For No. 1”, is a lovely ballad with beautiful strings, while on the great “Cherry”, Pete Way does a terrific job on bass, this should of been a top 40 hit. Then in the hard chargin’ “You Don’t Fool Me”, the strutting guitar of Schenker is awesome.
The string arrangement returns with the (reprise) of “Looking Out For No. 1”. “One More For The Rodeo” is another solid, smooth rocker with some of Phil Mogg’s best vocals. With “Born To Lose”, Schenker’s guitar and strings melt into each other on this stupendous closing track.
Originally released in 1978, and featuring one of the most recognizable and bizarre Hipgnosis cover artwork of all time, ”Obsession” was arguably UFO’s high-water mark. This LP is a feast for the ears with lots of blistering, squeaking guitar, classic Phil Mogg vocals, granite drumming from Andy Parker, solid songwriting / bass playing from Pete Way and some great contributions from Paul Raymond.
This remastered release is very good, balanced, crisp, with 3 bonus tracks with a hot UFO performing live.
”Obsession” is UFO at their absolute best. No fan of classic melodic hard rock should be without this album.
ＷＡＲＮＥＲ ＭＵＳＩＣ ＪＡＰＡＮ 【ＷＰＣＲ～80005】
Forever Young Series
01 – Only You Can Rock Me
02 – Pack It Up (And Go)
03 – Arbory Hill
04 – Ain’t No Baby
05 – Looking Out For No. 1
06 – Hot ‘n’ Ready
07 – Cherry
08 – You Don’t Fool Me
09 – Looking Out For No. 1 (Reprise)
10 – One More For The Rodeo
11 – Born To Lose
12 – Hot ‘n’ Ready (Live 17/10/78) (Bonus track)
13 – Pack It Up (And Go) (Live 17/10/78) (Bonus track)
14 – Ain’t No Baby (Live 14/10/78) (Bonus track)
Phil Mogg – vocals
Michael Schenker – guitars, flute
Paul Raymond – keyboards, guitar
Pete Way – bass
Andy Parker – drums
Alan McMillan – string arrangements, string conductor
Out of print