Scorpions
Fly To The Rainbow


5.0
classic

Review

by Daniel Dias USER (66 Reviews)
August 5th, 2013 | 23 replies


Release Date: 1974 | Tracklist

Review Summary: Uli Jon Roth makes his stand.

Scorpions

Klaus Meine: Vocals
Uli Jon Roth: Lead Guitar
Rudolf Schenker: Rhythm Guitar
Francis Buchholz: Bass Guitar
Jürgen Rosenthal: Drums


After the release of Scorpions' debut album, Lonesome Crow, the Scorps' line-up suffered changes: co-founding member Rudolf Schenker signed a deal with UFO and became their guitarist when he was still touring with the Scorpions; bassist Lothar Heimberg and drummer Wolfgang Dziony left the band, shortly after Michael's departure. Uli Jon Roth replaced Michael Schenker and Francis Buchholz was hired, as well as Jürgen Rosenthal. Buchholz and Rosenthal had previously worked with Uli Roth in Roth's band, Dawn Road. As the new line-up was established, Scorpions' second album, Fly to the Rainbow, was released in November 1974, two years after the release of Lonesome Crow. The debut album had recieved mixed critical reception, and they were starting to find their own style and identity. Michael Shencker's aforementioned departure from the band disturbed that process, but Roth was about to change all that.

Uli Jon Roth's virtuosity, creativity and impact was huge for the direction of the band. The Scorps desperately needed someone who pushed the entire direction of the band forward, and Roth was able to do just that. He was the guitarist that they needed. With Roth's arrival, the Scorps continued to explore their style into a higher ground. And, considering the changes between Lonesome Crow and Fly to the Rainbow, the young musicians had an astounding improvement. Scorpions' debut album turned out to be surprisingly good to listen to, but they couldn't find their own identity, turning the album's sound into a sort of Zeppelin-meets-Cream. Fly to the Rainbow features an amazing increase in terms of creativity, maturity and style. Uli Jon Roth was a perfectionist and he was anxious to show himself to the world. Therefore, he assumed himself as the Scorpions' creative force. And his sense of leadership was incredible for the Scorps and for the direction and ambition of the album.

Roth's amazing talent and virtuosity can be seen and appreciated throughout the entire album, but he wouldn't be able to do everything by himself. Klaus Meine and Rudolf Schenker developed a connection, establishing themselves as a songwriting team, and Meine's vocal abilities are phenomenal too. Sometimes, in Lonesome Crow, he seemed a bit absent. Now, there was a huge improvement. Buchholz and Rosenthal were immediately able to familiarize themselves with the other members of the band. Therefore, the musicianship is excellent. The production of the album is as close to flawless as it can be. It's not rushed and the songs aren't painful to listen to, it is focused and very meticulous. Even the track listing is placed with smartness and ability. The final result is absolutely extraordinary. Fly to the Rainbow has immediate standouts, and they're not few. The first song of the album, Speedy's Coming, is one of those standouts. Speedy's Coming's lyrics are flagrantly stupid: "You like Alice Cooper, you like Ringo Starr; you like David Bowie and friends in Royal Albert Hall" support that argument. But ignore the lyrics and you have a very energetic and powerful rocker. But the album couldn't succeed without its masterpieces: They Need A Million, Drifting Sun and Fly to the Rainbow.

Those songs can easily showcase the Scorps' style, creativity and talent. The lyrics aren't exactly very meaningful or even important, especially because only the title track has special messages, such as: I am in disgrace, yet I see a smiling face, and I hope you let me share your place. But music is not only made of great songwriting. An amazing musicianship is carried to the songs' essence, giving them a true meaning. And there is space for experiments too. Uli Jon Roth has a chance to sing in Drifting Sun. His voice may not be very good but Klaus Meine collaborates with him in a pleasant way. Drifting Sun's solo is phenomenal and several hints of Scorpions' progressive rock influences can be discovered. They Need A Million and Fly to the Rainbow, a 9-minute epic performance, feature Roth's astounding technique and trademark (he is one of the most acknowledged contributors to the neo-classical metal genre), but it's not a one-man-show. Rudolf Schenker does an incredible rhythmic job, accompanying Uli, and Klaus' performance is very solid, as he showcases his great vocal abilities. Buchholz and Rosenthal are not as flashy as the other members of the band, but they still do a good job. This amazing talent could only turn into a great set of songs. These are only the best songs of the album. Fly People Fly would be a standout in any other album, as well as the powerful This Is My Song. Even the more melodic and melancholic Far Away is very peaceful and worthy of recognition.

Fly to the Rainbow was obviously/tremendously misunderstood by the critical press. It topped the charts in Germany and Japan, but it didn't attain any recognition in the United States. This album still features many of Scorpions' influences, but they have been incredibly developed into higher areas and singularized. Scorpions' sound, style and identity was being crafted. However, more line-up changes occurred. Jürgen Rosenthal, the drummer, would leave the band, and he would be replaced by Rudy Lenners. Scorpions' next album, In Trance, would have a heavier sound. Producer Dieter Dierks would give the members of the band a big boost, helping them establishing their style.

Recommended Tracks

Speedy's Coming
They Need A Million
Drifting Sun
Fly to the Rainbow




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user ratings (113)
Chart.
3.9
excellent
other reviews of this album
John Marinakis (4.5)
Progressive, ethereal and mystical, Fly To The Rainbow is a superb album and the first collaboration...

DLT (4.5)
"Fly To The Rainbow" is a terrific CD by Scorpions. This is a record that is more tie-dye than lea...


Comments:Add a Comment 
danielcardoso
August 5th 2013


2241 Comments

Album Rating: 5.0

Most of you tend to prefer "In Trance" and "Taken By Force" over this album but, still, i hope you can enjoy this. This still rules nevertheless ;)

Thecandyman
August 5th 2013


33 Comments


Never been to crazy for this


danielcardoso
August 5th 2013


2241 Comments

Album Rating: 5.0

too bad man, i think it's awesome.

MrSirLordGentleman
August 5th 2013


4420 Comments

Album Rating: 5.0

one of my favorite albums, insta pos

Digging: Nina Simone - Pastel Blues

danielcardoso
August 5th 2013


2241 Comments

Album Rating: 5.0

Thanks man, it may be my favourite Scorpions album.

MrSirLordGentleman
August 5th 2013


4420 Comments

Album Rating: 5.0

Taken by force is very close but yeah, it is my favorite too

manosg
August 5th 2013


6102 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

A 5? Damn! Excellent album even though I prefer In Trance, Taken By Force and Lovedrive over it.

Digging: John Coltrane - Ballads

danielcardoso
August 5th 2013


2241 Comments

Album Rating: 5.0

"A 5? Damn! Excellent album even though I prefer In Trance, Taken By Force and Lovedrive over it."
I figured someone would say that. I really love this album since the 1st time i heard it.

JamieTwort
Contributing Reviewer
August 5th 2013


20695 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

Great album but I definitely prefer In Trance and Taken By Force.
Every Roth-era Scorpions album rules though. Pos'd.

Digging: Townes Van Zandt - Townes Van Zandt

MrSirLordGentleman
August 5th 2013


4420 Comments

Album Rating: 5.0

I can understand some may prefer Taken by Force, but I don't see what everyone see on In Trance, I
think it is very average

JamieTwort
Contributing Reviewer
August 5th 2013


20695 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

Seriously? It's more consistent than this imo for a start.

MrSirLordGentleman
August 5th 2013


4420 Comments

Album Rating: 5.0

Yeah, sure it is consistent, but it lacks on variety imo

danielcardoso
August 5th 2013


2241 Comments

Album Rating: 5.0

You seriously don't dig In Trance? Man, one of my favourites.
Dark Lady, In Trance, Top of the Bill, Longing for Fire, etc.

hogan900
Contributing Reviewer
August 5th 2013


1616 Comments


ROCK YOU LIKE A HURRICANE, Nice review though ;D

TheNotrap
August 6th 2013


8073 Comments

Album Rating: 3.5

Album's pretty solid.
Good job, have a pos.

Digging: Lago - Tyranny

ksoflas
August 6th 2013


389 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

A classic indeed. Good job, pos'd.

P.S: I sold my father's vinyl for around 20 euro to a friend when i was 16 to be able to watch Iron Maiden live for the first time in my life... what a discrase!


NagasakiBombers
August 6th 2013


25 Comments


Solid enough album

danielcardoso
August 6th 2013


2241 Comments

Album Rating: 5.0

You shouldn't have sold your father's collection just to see Iron Maiden!
Judas Priest > Iron Maiden!

ksoflas
August 7th 2013


389 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

I only sold this particular album.
I saw Priest some years after too.


danielcardoso
August 7th 2013


2241 Comments

Album Rating: 5.0

Iron Maiden toured in my country around May in the Maiden England World Tour but i couldn't see them because it wasn't exactly in the area that i live.



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