UFO — UFO II : Flying (review)

UFO — UFO II : Flying album cover Album · 1971 · Proto-Metal Buy this album from MMA partners
1.5/5 ·
For their second album, UFO decided to stick to the formula of the first, ie "heavy" psych rock, based around a small collection of rather unadventurous riff patterns.

An album for fans only, there's little to get excited about in here;

The opener, "Flying" is a somewhat dull jam - indeed, there's not much "psych" about it. There are a few tasty licks among the neverending noodle - Mick Bolton is no Michael Schenker for sure, and is the weak link in the jigsaw puzzle, as Pete Way and Andy Parker serve up a solid but ultimately boring backdrop that only serves to hint tantalisingly at the superb songs they were later to pen. Phil Mogg's voice has also yet to find its feet, so to speak, so this is not the UFO of "Phenomenon".

After several listens, I still find it fairly difficult to differentiate the pieces - they're all much of a muchness, although not quite as crushingly dull as some of the more mundane Krautrock from which this album undoubtedly springs - there is an emphasis on the sound of the crashing rhythm chords that suggests some thought has gone into the structuring.

Turning up the volume doesn't fix this, and neither, I've discovered, does beer. The (literally) monotonous vocals of "Star Storm" are not the soaring masterpieces that the band would come to write, and do not come up to the kneecaps of their peers.

The incessant wailing of the over-effected guitar really gets old quite quickly - and there are 3 tracks to go, which, for better or worse, sound exactly the same, except the notes are in different orders.

Avoid unless you're desparate to hear what UFO were like before they were amazing.

One and a half stars - really it's a half star album, musically and metally - but Way, Parker and Mogg are at least there, and solid. Nothing to dislike there.
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