The 50th band anniversary deluxe edition of Scorpions 5th album Taken by force has a different album cover than the original version from 1977 and I do prefer the original black artwork with photos of the line up.
But it´s a beautiful package we get with an inner sleeve full of information about the work behind this album that would be last studio recording featuring lead guitarist Ulrich Roth.
This version also contains 6 bonus tracks with Suspender love as the highlight, it´s the b-side to He´s a woman, she´s a man but the other bonus tracks are hardly anything to be excited about.
They are an unfinished instrumental called Blue dream and demo versions of songs with Klaus Meine humming his way through the songs because there aren´t any lyrics to sing.
However, there is far more to be happy about with official album tracklisting, I mean here are some of Scorpions best songs in Steamrock fever, The Sails of Charon, The riot of your time and He´s a woman, she´s a man. Recorded between June and October 1977.
Taken by force is the first album to feature new drummer Herman Erbel aka Herman Rarebell, he replaced Rudy Lenners who had fallen ill. Herman debuted by contributing lyrics to the song He´s a woman, she´s a man. Inspired by an incident in Paris when he saw four really hot chicks and said “Hey girls what´s up”, it turned out the beautiful girls were men in drag.
The song We´ll burn the sky is co-written with Monika Dannemann, Jimi Hendrix´s last girlfriend who later married Ulrich Roth. Both Klaus Meine and Rudolf Schenker knew this would be the last studio album with Uli because he was on his own private and artistic mission where most of his songs didn´t fit in with the musical concept of The Scorpions.
Uli would pursue a solo career with his Electric Sun while Scorpions had become one of the biggest rock bands in the world where Taken by force is considered one of their best albums.