Uli Jon Roth – Tokyo Tapes Revisited/Live In Japan


I am not sure what to make of Uli Jon Roth’s recent notion to cover classic Scorpions tracks of the 70s era when he was a member of the German supergroup. This is my favorite Scorpions era and I must confess that, in my humble opinion, “Tokyo Tapes” is the ultimate live album of all time.

We can approach this specific release either as pure nostalgia or as an anniversary one as there have passed 37 years since Scorpions recorded their seminal live album at the Nakano Sun Plaza Hall of Tokyo. This time around, the emblematic guitarist re-records the songs providing his own, unique interpretation. The tracklisting is more or less the same compared to the 2015 reissue although there are alos included: “Longing For Fire”, “Sails Of Charon”, “The Sun In My Hands”, “Virgin Killer”, “Rainbow Dream Prelude”, “I’ve Got To Be Free” and “Crying Days” plus Roth’s favorite covers “All Along The Watchtower” and “Little Wing”. I was surprised by the omission of “Drifting Sun” which was the first ever song that he composed in his Scorpions days and remained a constant number up to now in his shows.

It goes without saying that we shouldn’t evaluate this album with the 1978 masterpiece as it isn’t a Scorpions album, right? This is a tribute to Scorpions by a band that includes the original guitarist who has added his own stamp without altering the final result. My concern in regards with the capabilities of the singer remains although I must admit that his work this time was quite decent. I am not looking for yet another Klaus Meine (impossible) but the expectations are logically high.

“Tokyo Tapes Revisited – Live In Japan” is being released in DVD/Blu-ray and in a limited edition box set that includes 4 vinyls, 4 DVD, 2 CD, a book, a t-shirt, a keychain etc. It’s quite expensive but I believe that all the die-hard fans of Scorpions and Uli Jon Roth should definitely check it out.