Review: Michael Schenker Fest
Photograph (C) Emili Muraki
The sound of a guitar is like a speech to the soul. The notes move you, the chords flow through you and the wail of a guitar thrills you.
This couldn’t be truer when listening to Michael Schenker Fest: Live at Tokyo International Forum Hall. Over two CDs (plus an incredible DVD) your mind is catapulted into the arena; your entire being enthralled in the concert of a lifetime.
Schenker’s musical prowess is second to none. Technically he is one of the most skilled guitarists I have ever heard and probably will ever hear. Introduction ‘Searching for freedom’ unleashes the power of the guitar in minutes of musical serenity where the sounds build to a euphoric feeling.
Just when you think it can’t get any better, Michael Introduces Gary Barden for songs including ‘Victim of Illusion’ and ‘Let Sleeping Dogs Lie’. Gary’s vocals are wall to wall (or if you’re listening to the CD, speaker to speaker) blasts of anthemic melody.
With ‘Cry for nations’, the crowd joins Barden in unanimous chorus; an endless wave of sonic musical unity that signifies a love for both the song and the artists on stage. You can hear the excitement in their voices and their devotion to the music. If love for music could be defined in one sound, it would be the sound of this concert’s crowd.
Each song in the setlist catapults the show from strength to strength; consistently impressive with flawless musicianship. As two more iconic vocalists take to the stage (Graham Bonnet and Robin McAuley), you cannot help but feel captivated by the concert.
‘Love is not a game’ begins with heavier riffs, paving the way for an excellent chorus riff and impressive vocals from Robin McAuley. However, its ‘Dancer’ that leaves you with feelings of awe. The combination of Michael Schenker, Gary Barden, Graham Bonnett and Robin McAuley is a meld of musical genius that begins from the very first second. The blend of the guitar solo and cymbals take you note by note, rhythm by rhythm into this rapturous finale.
Michael Schenker Fest: Live at Tokyo International Forum is one of the defining concerts of the century. Listen to it, watch it, live it. It’s an experience unlike any other.
Michael Schenker Fest: Live at the Tokyo International Forum Hall is available to buy from Friday 24th March 2017.
By Sarah O' Hara
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