UFO

Force It

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    8
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AllMusic Review by

Michael Schenker and Phil Mogg really started to find their groove as a songwriting team with their second album together (and fourth UFO release overall), Force It. In fact, the last remaining folk and space rock tendencies that had stolen much of Phenomenon's thunder are summarily abandoned here, as the group launches itself wholeheartedly toward the hard rock direction that would make them stars. The first step is taken by Schenker, of course, who confidently establishes the aggressive, biting guitar tone that would define all the releases of the band's glory years. "Let It Roll" and "Shoot Shoot" kick off the album in rousing fashion, and while holding them under a microscope might reveal them as rather disposable slabs of hard rock, they would remain concert favorites for the band nonetheless. The punchy single "Love Lost Love" sounds tailor-made for the American market and acoustic ballad "High Flyer" is quite good, despite taking a dip in energy. But things only really start to gell on the album's second half. Schenker and Mogg wheel out their most mature composition yet with the piano-led "Out in the Street," whose softer sections truly highlight Mogg's highly disciplined, understated vocal style and make the guitar player's more restrained soloing all the more memorable. Schenker is soon back in charge, however, on the stuttering riffs and blistering fretboard work of "Mother Mary" and the downright vicious stop-start strut of "This Kids" -- both UFO anthems. One of the band's best albums, Force It will not disappoint lovers of '70s English hard rock.

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