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Title - 'Virgin Killer' (Audio Fidelity LP)
Artist - Scorpions

Virgin Killer is the fourth studio album by the German heavy metal band Scorpions. It was released in 1976 and was the first album of the band to attract attention outside Europe. The title is described as being a reference to time as the killer of innocence. That said, I think we can all recall the original album cover. The one with the (very) young girl, naked, a cracked-glass effect strategically placed upon her private parts. Designed by Steffan Böhle, who was then the product manager for RCA Records at the time, it was a cover that, at the time, as much as it still does today, caused outrage amongst both music lovers and child exploitation groups.

Hence, the album was re-issued with a different cover in some countries, inclusive of this brand new re-release on Limited Edition 180 Gram Vinyl from Audio Fidelity.

In truth, the success of Virgin Killer was similar to other Scorpions albums featuring Uli Jon Roth as lead guitarist; it simply failed to attain any serious attention in the United States, but was really quite popular in Japan. In fact, the album peaked at #32 in the charts there and was yet another step in the band's shift from psychedelic music to hard rock.

The Scorpions, at that time, consisted of Klaus Meine – lead vocals; Ulrich Roth – lead guitar, backing vocals, lead vocals on 'Hell-Cat' and 'Polar Nights'; Rudolf Schenker – rhythm guitar, backing vocals; Francis Buchholz – bass, backing vocals; and Rudy Lenners – drums, percussion.

1. 'Pictured Life'
2. 'Catch Your Train'
3. 'In Your Park'
4. 'Backstage Queen'
5. 'Virgin Killer'
6. 'Hell-Cat'
7. 'Crying Days'
8. 'Polar Nights'
9. 'Yellow Raven'

As for the album itself well, Virgin Killer is an album that contains the Scorpions best guitar playing ever, courtesy of Uli Jon Roth. The track 'Pictured Life' screams out of the blocks with a burst of harmony guitar lines and is carried forward by Rudolf Schenker's abrasive rhythm work and Roth's fast descending trills.

'Catch Your Train' is an uptempo rocker that features Roth's extremely fast sixteenth-note and blazing Mixolydian-mode runs. The best song is 'In Your Park,' where Roth demonstrates the art of using arpeggios within a rock solo. Roth proves to be technically well ahead of his peers with this album. His style of playing didn't enjoy widespread use until the mid eighties. If you like old school metal guitar, you'll love this.

'Virgin Killer' 180 Gram Vinyl LP Purchase Link