Monday, July 9, 2012

"Strangers in the Night" by UFO (1979)

Check out the cool cover design by Hipgnosis!

View the Premise & Ground Rules for Revisiting Vinyl

Fun Fact: After a little thinking and a little research, I realized that the Sonny James record that came up was a
greatest hits compilation, so we've moved on to a double live album by a prehistoric hard rock band.

Filed between: Bonnie Tyler and Uriah Heep


My Overall Rating of the Tracks Separately:
HIGHLY Recommended (3.5/4 stars)

Key Track:
Out in the Street wins.  However, props to the Styxish rocker Only You Can Rock Me and the super-chunky and nasty Doctor Doctor.

Sounds like: big, anthemic music.  It's a great way to kick of a live record.


My Overall Rating of the Tracks Separately:
HIGHLY Recommended (3.5/4 stars)

Key Track:
Mother Mary.  Again, props as well to the power ballad Love to Love.

Sounds like: well-executed, authentic hard rock.  Sammy Hagar was definitely somewhere taking notes.


My Overall Rating of the Tracks Separately:
Above Average (2.5/4 stars)

Key Track:
Lights out.  This one's pretty easy 'cause there are only two songs on SIDE III.

Sounds like: seventies self-gratification and self-aggrandizing.  Two songs!  And this was clearly how they ended their regular set.


My Overall Rating of the Tracks Separately:
Average (2/4 stars)

Key Track:

Sounds like: standard seventies rock fare, which makes sense because this side is the encore showcasing UFO's approximation of hits.

So, is it an album?  Yes.  I'm not a huge UFO fan, but the live recordings bring out a much thicker sound than they get in the studio.  "Strangers in the Night" shows how live records can be used to great effect.    To be honest, sides I and II make me want to delve into a deeper exploration.  Of course, sides III and IV remind me that UFO often slips into a somewhat generic mold which I find to be a little tedious, so maybe not.

Up next, another double live album, but in a very different vein.  This time it's "Waiting for Columbus" by Little Feat.

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