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Seventies Scorps at their best,
This review is from: In Trance (Audio CD)
Moody and melancholic but with thunderous beats and fiery guitars, 'In Trance' is the undoubted highlight of Uli Jon Roth-era Scorpions and marks a definitive stage in the band's development. The band teamed up with producer Dieter Dierks, who they would subsequently work with for the rest of the Seventies and through their Eighties career peak, until they switched to Keith Olsen for 1990's 'Crazy World'. Dierks helped define the Scorpions classic, guitar-heavy sound and the producer would help the band avoid sterility by making each of their albums sound slightly different from the last. Here, he creates a vicious, snarling beast of an album by moving Roth's lead guitar and Klaus Meine's piercing vocals to the front of the mix, while keeping the emphasis on "heavy" for the rhythm section. A dark undercurrent runs through the whole album (assisted by the band's rather wistful and melancholy songwriting) and there's an almost enchanting sense of time standing still which gives the album even greater appeal.
With opening track' Dark Lady', the Scorpions pretty much play their trump card first because it's noting short of brilliant; the guitars may grate and Klaus may shriek, yet the menacing energy that pours forth is invigorating and Roth delivers a metal guitar solo par excellence. The title track is a Scorpions classic, beautiful and ethereal, and bracketing the tour de force of 'Top of the Bill' are the curiously sorrowful 'Life's Like a River' and 'Living and Dying'. 'Robot Man', a live favourite, is more standard rock fare, yet Uli Jon Roth's 'Evening Wind' is brilliantly spaced-out and dynamic, aided by a glorious chorus and some lovely guitar work. Roth again lets his guitar burst forth on 'Sun in My Hand' (and gets away with doing the vocal work) and 'Longing for Fire' offers more standard rocking before the album closes with the delightful instrumental 'Night Lights'.
This is an album not to be taken lightly; its dark energy and harsh tone demanding attention. Yet it possesses plenty of beauty and originality and is a worthy addition to any Seventies metal collection.
It's also the first Scorpions album to feature a risqué cover, depicting a loosely clad blonde rapturously clutching a Fender Strat. Get a copy on vinyl if you can.