Phenomenon Review

artist: UFO date: 07/25/2013 category: compact discs
UFO: Phenomenon
Released: May 1974
Genre: Hard rock, Heavy metal
Label: Chrysalis
Number Of Tracks: 10
Consider this album an essential for any hard rock fan who appreciates sexy guitar solos and catchy riffs.
 Sound: 9.7
 Lyrics: 8.7
 Overall Impression: 9.3
 Overall rating:
 Reviewer rating:
 Users rating:
reviews (3) 3 comments vote for this album:
overall: 10
Phenomenon Reviewed by: CinderellaFan14, on january 18, 2012
3 of 3 people found this review helpful

Sound: UFO comes crashing down to earth (mind the pun) to blow the minds of all hard rock lovers with this album! "Phenomenon" not only introduced me to UFO, but it was also the first hard rock album I really and truly enjoyed! The entire album is amazing from start to finish, with all of the songs containing a perfect mix of blues and hard rock riffs. The album starts out perfectly with "Oh My", which is a great hard rock song and perfect song to introduce listeners to the band's sound. The album soon picks into a cruising mode with a slower rock song "Crystal Light". The song's lyrics spins a mind blowing web of pictures and colors with the help of slight tempo and pitch changes, which compliment each other perfectly. While you're sitting back and enjoying the ride in the world of UFO, you're kicked right into overdrive with the song "Doctor Doctor", which not only is one of my favorite UFO songs but also one of my favorite rock songs of all time. Michael Schenker comes out of his cage in this song, pumping out some amazing riffs. After the quick speed change, you slow back down in the song "Space Child", which is very similar to "Crystal Light" when it comes to the sound and tempos of the songs. After you're nice and calmed down after "Space Child", you get boosted back into space again with another UFO great classic, "Rock Bottom". Michael Schenker is almost dying to show his talent in these upbeat songs on the album, and he doesn't fail or disappoint. After each great hard rocker on this album, UFO allows your mind to recover from the greatness it just received. The album slows down a little bit after "Rock Bottom", but is a lot faster than "Crystal Light" or "Space Child" for the next two songs, "Too Young To Know" and "Time On My Hands". UFO again shows their ability to work with all genres of rock with a blues-rock classic "Built For Comfort". After this, UFO returns the sound of "Crystal Light" and "Space Child" with an instrumental song called "Lipstick Traces". And finally, the album ends on the song "Queen of the Deep", a song that has the sound of "Doctor Doctor" with the tempo of "Too Young To Know". This album ends up leaving a permanent impression on you that redefines what you call rock n roll, and only makes you eager for more. // 10

Lyrics: The lyrics for this album are at times very complicated but work perfectly. Some songs, such as "Crystal Light", have lyrics that flow perfectly as if telling a story, which paints pictures and colors in your mind as your listen to each second of the song. Other songs, such as "Doctor Doctor", you find that the lyrics just work well with the music, and help you jam out even more. The lead singer, Phil Mogg, is the perfect addition to UFO, and is the icing on the cake when it comes to UFO's overall sound. However, what makes the flavor of the cake has to be Michael Sheneker, who co-wrote the lyrics with Mogg and is one of the main components when it comes to UFO's sound. // 10

Overall Impression: "Phenomenon" is one of the greatest rock n roll albums of all time. Period. This album for me truly introduced me to rock n roll. With some other rock songs or albums, I got to see what rock n roll looked like and sounded like. But when I heard "Phenomenon", I got to really meet rock n roll, get to know him, and truly understand what rock n roll was. The entire album is impressive from start to finish, and what you call "impressive" has to be your point of view about music in general. For true hard rock fans, songs "Doctor Doctor", "Rock Bottom", and "Oh My" are the perfect songs for you to enjoy over and over again. However, I think all rock fans would enjoy this album from start to finish. There is nothing bad you could say about this album. The signature UFO sound is nothing like I've ever heard before, and is easily one of my favorite rock albums of all time. Those who haven't heard the album from beginning to end need to. To really enjoy the album, you have to listen to it from start to finish. Not one song off this album can summarize the whole sound of this album, which may be part of what makes it so great. This album is the perfect album for many different things. It is perfect as an introduction to what rock music really is for those who have never heard rock or haven't really appreciated it; it is the perfect album for any rock lover who hasn't heard it and even those who have. It's even great for a nice long car ride, which is how I first listened to the album. Every rock fan should listen to this album, and I promise you won't be disappointed. // 10

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overall: 8.3
Phenomenon Reviewed by: ripoffhitman, on july 01, 2010
1 of 1 people found this review helpful

Sound: UFO blends bluesy ballads with soulful solos and heavy riffs covered with the raunchy vocals of Phil Mogg. With the newly appointed Michael Schenker playing both lead and rhythm and all but two tracks, (which have him only on lead), the album is mostly guitar oriented, which will please you hard rock fans at UG who are tired of overplayed Bon Jovi songs dominating the genre. It is not hard to point out that the best two songs on the album are "Rock Bottom" and "Doctor Doctor". The rest of the album contains catchy but overplayed arpeggios. The bass on the album is sub-par, but not necessary for the sound UFO was going for. Drums are simple but do their part when the bridges and tempo changes comes. The album consists of mostly guitar powered hard rock with guitars in the style of Thin Lizzy and Wishbone Ash whose guitarists complement each other. // 9

Lyrics: The lyrics lack substance and lines commonly include long phrases that make the words seem bunched up. Shadow EARTH is closin' in above the lamps in your street Lucifer goes walkin' down FOR YOU to meet The lyrics include tales of depression, lust, and of course sexual and demonic encounters. With little to say, if you are looking for an album with lyrical creativity, this isn't a good example. But rarely do bands include both good instrumental prowess and lyrical creativity. // 7

Overall Impression: UFO has gained little popularity over the years they've been in existence. Michaels Schenker's opposing band, The Scorpions gained much more popularity, but has lost touch over the years and became hair metal crap, but started out just as good. Consider this album an essential for any hard rock fan who appreciates sexy guitar solos and catchy riffs. Regardless of the poor reception this album has received, it must be good. Iron Maiden opens concerts with Doctor Doctor all the time, but you never hear those heavy metal legends play Wind of Change. // 9

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overall: 9.3
Phenomenon Reviewed by: TooMintyFresh, on july 25, 2013
1 of 1 people found this review helpful

Sound: We've all (hopefully) had that moment when we hear an album for the first time that you just sit there dumbfounded at how brilliant it is. I read somewhere that Iron Maiden used to open up with UFO's song "Doctor Doctor" because of what in influence UFO had on them. I can't blame them either since they were such ahead of their time. After listening to the album in its entirety I couldn't believe that this album had come out in 1974 due to the fact that nothing at the time sounded anything like this. I was into a lot of Zeppelin and Sabbath which I thought was the pinnacle of rock music in the early '70s, but after hearing what Michael Schenker could to on the guitar I didn't know what to think anymore. // 10

Lyrics: UFO's singer (Phil Mogg) in my opinion is defiantly underrated even though he may be no Robert Plant or Steven Tyler he still seems to fit in well with the rest of the band. The lyrics are great overall on each song as "Queen of the Deep" and "Crystal Light" stand out as the best lyrical songs on the album. There's really no weak song speaking lyrically unless you count "Lipstick Traces" since well, is an instrumental. Yet a beautiful instrumental I might add. For their song "Rock Bottom" though there's a live video somewhere on YouTube with alternate lyrics to the song which if I remember correctly was performed in 1973 so it was before they released "Phenomenon," and to be honest I liked those lyrics better and I kind of wish they had made the studio version of "Rock Bottom" with those lyrics instead. // 9

Overall Impression: When it comes down to it, all the songs on "Phenomenon" are great and worthy of the title "Best Song On The Album." You have their most known song "Doctor Doctor" but really there's only one song that stands out far above the others which is "Rock Bottom." When I first heard the guitar solo on "Rock Bottom" I remember replaying the solo at least 5 times before I even let the song finish. There are no words to describe how amazing that song is, you just have to listen to it to understand. To this day there has been no guitar solo besides the one on "Rock Bottom" that has been able to mesmerize me like it did. UFO is by far one of the most underrated bands I've ever listened to and I highly recommend them to any aspiring guitarist or to anyone who loves '70s hard rock. Each song on the album individually rated by me would goes as the following: 01. "Oh My": Good catchy song, perfect choice on them for an album opener. 02. "Crystal Light": Beautiful song with a nice guitar solo by Michael. 03. "Doctor Doctor": Terrific song, probably the song they're best known for. 04. "Space Child": Maybe the only "blip" on the album but a fantastic guitar solo saves this mediocre song. 05. "Rock Bottom": This song is beyond perfect. 06. "Too Young to Know": Another good rocker, gets stuck in your head easily. 07. "Time on My Hands": Focuses a lot on Phil's vocals and it doesn't fail to entertain, the acoustic guitars are a nice touch too. 08. "Built for Comfort": A good cover song by UFO originally written by Willie Dixon. 09. "Lipstick Traces": A nice relaxing instrumental, shortest song on the album clocking in at 2:21. 10. "Queen of the Deep": An incredible song that caps off an incredible album, perfect song choice to end an album. Overall: 89/100 (a.k.a: Pretty damn amazing).

// 9

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