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MARK TAYLOR'S BIG CITY NIGHTS
SCORPIONS: WACKEN FESTIVAL
The Scorpions are on their farewell tour but when this tour actually finishes is open to question as The Scorpions are clearly enjoying themselves and fans from all over the world are demanding more. However ze Scorps have yet to announce dates in the UK and that is one chance I can't afford to take and this is actually the third time I've seen the German veterans on this tour, having previously seen them is Thailand and France.
Wacken is the only German open air festival date from The Scorpions this year and is the band's second visit to this mother of all Heavy Metal festivals. In 2006 The Scorpions played A Night To Remember with a special marathon show with guests of former members Michael Schenker, Uli Jon Roth and Herman Rarebell playing a career spanning set. This year however there was to be no special surprises, just The Scorpions doing what they do best with the current line-up, who are still at the top of their game.
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By day three of Wacken the weather had turned the site into a sludgy mud bath with even more rain pouring down during The Scorpions set, meaning the fans of Wacken really were being rocked by a hurricane.
Scorpions hit the stage in a sea of lights for opener 'Sting In The Tail' and soon proved to Wacken that you don't need to play fast and furious to be heavy with the slower tracks 'Make It Real' and the reggae flavour of 'Is There Anybody There?'. The set consisted of tracks from 'Love Drive' and onwards from when Matthias Jabs became a permanent member of the Scorpions.
'The Zoo' rocked hard with Jabs on the talk box, which was the only thing that prevented him from smiling throughout this gig, even when standing in the rain for his guitar solo later on, unified with the Wacken faithful.
Klaus Meine still has the voice of dynamite and Rudolf Schenker throws all the guitar heroic shapes and is fitter than men half his age. Scorpions are a professional act knowing how to utilize every inch of the stage to mass effect.
'Raised On Rock' is one of the better tracks from the latest album and goes down well. James Kottack takes off his shirt after his drum solo to reveal his tattooed back of 'Rock 'N Roll Forever'. For a pulsating 'Blackout' Schenker returns with his head bandaged and forks in his eyes, recreating the iconic album cover.
A storming 'Big City Nights' makes everyone forget the fact that it is raining.
Bizarrely, before the encore a steelworks statue of the Scorpions in pyramid pose was wheeled out with the Voodoo Ladies complete with grinders flying sparks off the metal masterpiece.
The Scorpions returned with a blazing trio of 'Coming Home', the power ballad 'Still Loving You' finely sung by Wacken before a rip roaring 'Rock You Like A Hurricane'.
Hopefully we haven't yet seen the last of The Scorpions. There's still plenty of deadly sting in the tail.
Sting In The Tail
Make It Real
Is There Anybody There?
Coast To Coast
Loving You Sunday Morning
Rhythm Of Love
Raised On Rock
Tease Me,Please Me
Hit Between The Eyes
Kottack's Attack (Drum solo)
Six String Sting (Guitar solo)
Big City Nights
Still Loving You
Rock You Like A Hurricane