The latest release from the legendary British hard rock band UFO is a perfect reminder of what is missing from most of today's rock offerings, but was supplied to generously by UFO in their salad days, and what is so maddening about this particular lot of incredibly talented musicians. Sharks is fresh but it's classic, it's hard but it's tasteful, it rock's but it's elegant. Lyrically and vocally Phil Mogg is at least at the top of his game. The old school British vocalist is aging gracefully, his pipes are solid and he's approaching his role as a hard rock frontman much the same way Sean Connery has eased into his later and certainly no less credible years as an actor. Master of his craft...distinguished expert. "..there's a dead man walking and his shadow's growing long, there's a dead man talking taking it in before his time is gone.." Many of today's rock singers can only convey one emotion...anger, Phil Mogg has painted a picture of England and elsewhere that this Cincinnati Kid would never have seen otherwise. Sea Of Faith, Shadow Dancer, Serenity, and the aforementioned Dead Man Walking are classics and if coupled with the anticipatory energy that accompanied the release of Walk ON Water might be considered the best songs penned by Schenker/Mogg since Lights Out. The real happiness here, the real difference maker is Michael Schenker's performance. Michael is back to playing solos which place a premium on note selection rather than impressive Schenkerisms! Here's the maddening part.....Why doesn't Michael play like this all the time? Why did Covenant happen? For God's sake why did DreamsAndExpressionsMSG2000TheOddTrioBeAwareOfScorpions happen when Sharks can happen? I'm sufferin' here!! Bottom line is this. Sharks has the likeable songwriting of High Wire, Out Of Luck, House Of Pain, Death In the Family, and most of Chocolate Box while being able to keep Mr Schenker interested. A fine bottom line indeed.

Mary K

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