Tonight we are seeing a true guitarist’s guitarist with Uli Jon Roth gracing Bannermans in Edinburgh. The last time I saw Uli Jon Roth, he was opening for his former band The Scorpions in Glasgow in 2008. To kick things off, we head back to the Tokyo Tapes era with “All Night Long”, a great start to the night with the first of ten older Scorpions tracks that you never hear the band play these days.
Uli and David are a joy to watch on guitar. We have three from Uli’s Electric Sun albums, firstly the truly incredible “Indian Dawn” from Fire Wind with its fabulous Hendrix tinged guitar & bass, followed by “Electric Sun”, showcasing a real Hendrix vibe, from Earthquake. It was just a joy to listen to and to watch him play. We also get “Just another Rainbow” from Fire Wind, which was stunning. We head into Scorpions territory again and the fabulous In Trance album with “Sun In My Hand”. Pino leads us in on the drums, and Niklas on bass, keeps the rhythm flowing.
The vocals are shared tonight with both Uli & Niklas taking turns, which worked really well on all of the songs tonight. We also have “Dark Lady” and just the most amazing version of “In Trance”, which was a pure mesmerising joy hear and to watch Uli, who seemed to play all night with his eyes shut, such is his effortless playing. We have a track now from Zeno, Uli’s brother Zeno Roth’s band, who sadly passed away last year. The track, “Don’t Tell the Wind” from Zeno’s 1986 self-titled album, was just fabulous and emotional to listen to. Zemo is an album well worth checking out.
We have some Taken By Force with “We’ll Burn the Sky” and “The Sails Of Charon” followed by some Virgin Killer outings with the likes of “Pictured Life”, “Catch Your Train” and the ever-popular “Polar Nights” with its flowing guitar and bass lines. Uli brings out a couple of Hendrix tracks with “All Along the Watchtower”, strictly a Dylan track but most people associate it with Jimi Hendrix these days, and closes a superb two hour set with the most fabulous version of “Little Wing” that I have ever heard.
Uli has assembled a tremendous band for this tour with himself on lead vocals/guitar, David Klosinski on guitar (what a young find he is, a tremendous player), Niklas Turmann on bass/lead vocals, Fab Jablonski on keyboards & Pino Liberti on drums. The band were just a joy to listen to and to watch, I don’t know where the time went but I leave the venue a very happy man. Roll on next time.
Pics by Gary Cooper Gig Photography