RATINGS: A = must own B = buy it C= average D = yawn F = puke

Michael Schenker’s Temple of Rock – Bridge the Gap

Rating: B+

Michael Schenker is back with his Temple of Rock moniker, this time putting together an all star lineup that includes his ex-Scorpions bandmates Herman Rarebell (drums) and Francis Buchholz (bass)  along with vocalist Doogie White (Rainbow, Yngwie Malmsteen) and Wayne Findlay (guitar & keyboards).  The album is titled Bridge the Gap, which is to insinuate this band is the amalgamation of Michael’s entire career.

If Mikey can keep this lineup together, pushing forward, and does not do what he has done so many times in his past, which is totally fuck up, then Schenker could resurrect his career and reach new heights as a guitar god as he nears sixty years of age.

Schenker’s playing is simply top notch and his songwriting is consistent and complete. Unlike some of his past efforts, this time around we get much more than just riffs and solos.  With Rarebell and Buchholz as the rhythm section, and Doogie White on pipes, this is a fine band, creating well crafted tunes.  Findlay adds a modern element with his seven-string guitar as well as playing keyboards; however, this is still classic hard rock in every sense of the word. 

The album takes no time proving that the Mad Axeman is back with a musical fury and vengeance as the first track, the instrumental “Neptune Rising” hits the listener over the head from the first note.   “Where the Wild Winds Blow,” “Lord of the Lost and Lonely” and “Bridges We Have Burned” may be the three best tunes on the album, but this one smokes from start to finish without no bad songs in the mix. 

Pick this one up and be ready to be impressed.

Track Listing
01. Neptune Rise
02. Where the Wild Winds Blow
03. Horizons
04. Lord of the Lost and Lonely
05. Rock’n’Roll Symphony
06. To Live for the King
07. Land of Thunder
08. Temple of the Holy  
09. Shine On  
10. Bridges We have Burned  
11. Because You Lied  
12. Black Moon Rising
13. Dance for the Piper

By Jeb Wright