According to a posting on the Michael Schenker News and Tour Information web site, it appears as if the remainder of MICHAEL SCHENKER GROUP's U.K. has been cancelled. Schenker and his band were scheduled to perform last night (Friday, August 3) in Stourbridge, U.K. but ended up calling off the gig after only a handful of songs. A short review of last night's concert, as posted on the Michael Schenker News and Tour Information web site, follows:
"Well, it looks like the tour is over and that Michael will be in a German hospital tomorrow. The show did indeed start with smiles, broad ones too, but the joy at having cranked up the engine successfully gave way to the disappointment of realising that it wasn't running at all well. The riffing wasn't too bad but the solos were just awful. I think everybody connected with the tour expected this. As the intro tape played I watched Tyson standing with his dad's 'V' on his thigh and wondered what was going through his head and then saw another crew member light a cigarette behind the amps. It was how things are portrayed in films when beleaguered troops await the inevitable charge of a superior enemy.
"For me, the Schenker smiles at the start were the clue that this was a guy who wanted to play but couldn't get the brain and fingers to co-ordinate, almost like a recovering stroke victim concentrating hard to do something that would normally be so simple. Sadly many of the audience didn't see this, and started to shout abuse and throw stuff, most noticeably from 'Lights Out' onward, as I think that this was the point when people could really tell how bad things were. Yet the target of their venom, awful or not, might as well have been a frail, elderly man, because apart from his face Schenker's physical appearance and demeanour added 30 years to his real age.
"I was ashamed at the lack of humanity some people showed.
"Humanity did come calling in the end though. Right after 'Only You Can Rock Me', Michael lifted his guitar off his lap and stood up (he'd played all but the first song sat on a corner of the small drum riser). There was a brief huddle followed by 'thank you, good night' from the band. And that was it. The suffering was, we are led to believe, over, or at least the first step towards ending it had been taken. Probably this isn't a good time to comment on the band (nor on RATTLESNAKE REMEDY who were fantastic, in my opinion) musically, but they battled on manfully and were constantly supportive of, and encouraging to, their guitarist. That was what drew his smiles out even in the midst of this torment, knowing that these guys were still trying to pull him along even as the wheels were falling off. Chapeau fellas.
"Last thought for now — no sad song ever written jerks a tear quite like seeing Michael Schenker's face when he's failing to play his solo in 'Only You Can Rock Me'. One of the saddest things I've ever seen."
Michael Schenker at Rock & Blues Custom Show in Pentrich, U.K. on July 28, 2007:
Michael Schenker performing UFO's "Doctor Doctor" at Manchester Apollo on July 29, 2007:
Michael Schenker performing UFO's "Doctor Doctor" at Hammersmith Apollo in London on July 30, 2007: