Michael Schenker: Temple Rock

Michael Schenker
Temple Rock
(In-Akustik)

Schenker’s still got it! With Temple Rock, his first solo album since 2003’s Thank You 4, Schenker hits a home run. He’s pulled out all that stops … not that he needed too … with guest appearances by William Shatner, his brother Rudolph, Leslie West, Don Airey, Carmine Appice, Simon Phillips and Brian Tichy.

The album opens with a spoken word “Intro” delivered by Captain Kirk himself. As odd as Shatner’s speech sounds on first listen, it really does set up the album. The first music track (“How Long”) has a monster of a riff that grabs you and lets you know Schenker’s come to play. Granted there are a couple of tracks of what one might write off as “filler,” however, the lion’s share of the album is big, thick hard rock. Stand out tracks include “The End of an Era,” “Miss Claustrophobia,” “With You,” “Before the Devil Knows You’re Dead,” and “Storming In.” Coincidently, those tracks are also tracks 5 through 9 respectively. It’s a true onslaught, one after the other.

Temple Rock could, quite easily, be the hard rock album of 2011.