McAuley Schenker Group

McAuley Schenker Group (remasters 1987-1992)

After making his debut at a mere 17 years on the Scorpions first LP ‘Lonesome Crow’ in 1972, guitar maestro and mad axe-man Michael Schenker spent five years as lead guitarist with the inimitable UFO, before forming the Michael Schenker Group (MSG for short) with singer Gary Barden in 1979.

With four studio albums and two live records under his belt, released on Chrysalis Records between 1980 and 1984, Michael returned in 1987 for the ‘Perfect Timing’ album, now with former Grand Prix and Far Corporation singer Robin McAuley, and a change of name to the McAuley Schenker Group - but still conveniently shortened to MSG. The new look MSG recorded a total of four albums, starting with the melodic ‘Perfect Timing’ (1987), ‘Save Yourself’ (1989), ‘M.S.G.’ (1992) and finally with ‘Unplugged ¨C Live’ (1992). ‘Perfect Timing’ from 1987 features three singles; ‘Love Is Not A Game’, ‘Follow The Night’ and the US Hot 100 Hit ‘Gimme Your Love’, and is certainly the most melodic and AOR-friendly of this batch of CDs. 1992’s ‘M.S.G.’ is certainly a harder, grittier affair than the previous McAuley Schenker releases, and includes the single, ‘Never Ending Nightmare’. ‘M.S.G.’ had a much harder, guitar driven sound possibly as a reaction to the grunge that was very much in vogue at the time, whereas ‘Perfect Timing’ was a good reflection of the more commercial ‘hair-metal’ that was the height of fashion in the mid-late 1980s. Thanks in part to MTV’s popular ‘unplugged’ series of TV broadcasts and subsequent albums and videos, going acoustic was certainly very much de rigueur in the early 1990s, which leads us to the fourth and last album by this pairing; 1992’s ‘Unplugged Live’. As well as key McAuley Schenker songs, recorded live in Los Angeles in 1992, the album features three UFO classics; ‘Natural Thing’, ‘Doctor Doctor’ and ‘Lights Out’. The bonus tracks are unique acoustic studio versions of ‘Anytime’, ‘We Believe In Love’, ‘What Happens To Me’ and ‘Bad Boys’, all taken from the ‘unplugged in the studio’ Japanese only mini-album ‘Nightmare: The Acoustic MSG’. All three McAuley Schenker Group releases features 16 page booklets, each with new essays from Classic Rock’s Malcolm Dome based on new interviews with Michael Schenker and Robin McAuley, conducted especially for this release.

Look out for new albums and classic reissues from UFO’s Paul Raymond Project, Thunder, Luke Morley, Bernie Marsden and Uriah Heep, among many others, in 2013. For more information, press info and review copies, please contact Matt Ingham at Cherry Red: