Taken by Force

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For the book covering cases of rape committed by U.S. servicemen in Europe during World War II, see Taken by Force (book).
Taken by Force
Studio album by Scorpions
Released 4 December 1977 (Europe, U.K.)
January 1978 (US)
April 1978 (Japan)
Recorded Dierks Studios, Cologne, Germany, June–October 1977
Genre Heavy metal, hard rock
Length 39:05
Label RCA Records
Producer Dieter Dierks
Scorpions chronology
Virgin Killer
(1976)
Taken by Force
(1977)
Lovedrive
(1979)
Singles from Taken by Force
  1. "He's a Woman - She's a Man / Suspender Love"
    Released: 1977
  2. "The Sails of Charon / Steamrock Fever"
    Released: 1978
Alternative cover
Professional ratings
Review scores
Source Rating
Allmusic positive[1]
Sputnikmusic 4.5/5 stars[2]

Taken By Force is the fifth studio album by German heavy metal band Scorpions, released by RCA Records in 1977. This was the first Scorpions album to feature drummer Herman Rarebell and the final album to feature guitarist Uli Jon Roth. Roth left the band in 1978 following the end of the album's tour, and was eventually replaced by Matthias Jabs.

The lyrics to "We'll Burn the Sky" were initially a poem written by Monika Dannemann, the last girlfriend of Jimi Hendrix, as a tribute to him after he died. Later, she became involved with Scorpions' guitarist Uli Jon Roth (himself an admirer of Jimi Hendrix) and they worked together on some songs, including "We'll Burn the Sky".[citation needed]

Cover art[edit]

The album cover photography was taken by Michael von Gimbut,[3] returning for his third Scorpions album cover commission. Like their previous two albums, Taken By Force caused controversy with its cover art which again resulted in the artwork being replaced in most markets with an alternative cover using photographs of the band members. The band's former lead guitarist Uli Jon Roth defended the original artwork in a 2008 interview, stating

I think the original idea was children playing with guns at a military cemetary [sic] in France and some people found that offensive. I don't think it's offensive because I think it was actually a quite a good image because it puts war totally into perspective, very often it is young people, eighteen, ninenteen [sic], going to war that don't fully understand life. When you're fifteen you don't fully understand life, but these guys then have to shoot other people simply because someone tells them to do it for their country. Politicians are sometimes also children with guns, in all periods of time a lot of politicians are far too trigger happy and war too easily becomes an "easy solution", whereas for me it should never a solution, there should be no war in the first place. Maybe every once in a while a country may need to defend itself, I understand that, but in general if you consider that there are over a hundred wars raging in the present day on this planet alone then it's just sheer lunacy and always the tool of the Dark Side. Usually bad things come from war, very few good things, but sometimes good things come from bad things, that's true, nothing's that black and white. It's always the wrong solution to kill people.[4]

Track listing[edit]

Side one
No. Title Writer(s) Length
1. "Steamrock Fever"   Rudolf Schenker, Klaus Meine 3:37
2. "We'll Burn the Sky"   Schenker, Monika Dannemann 6:26
3. "I've Got to Be Free"   Ulrich Roth 4:00
4. "The Riot of Your Time"   Schenker, Meine 4:09
Side two
No. Title Writer(s) Length
5. "The Sails of Charon" (Most versions of the album contain a 4:23 edited version) Roth 5:16
6. "Your Light"   Roth 4:31
7. "He's a Woman - She's a Man"   Schenker, Meine, Herman Rarebell 3:15
8. "Born to Touch Your Feelings"   Schenker, Meine 7:40
2001 CD reissue bonus tracks
No. Title Writer(s) Length
9. "Suspender Love"   Schenker, Meine 3:20
10. "Polar Nights" (live version from Tokyo Tapes) Roth 6:56

"Suspender Love" was originally the b-side of "He's a Woman - She's a Man" single.

Most versions of this album (including all CD versions with bonus tracks) feature an edited version of "The Sails of Charon". The editing removes an introduction made up of "wind-like" sound effects. The intro does not actually contain any music performed by the band. The complete version is available on a 2010 remastered CD of Taken by Force released only in Japan.

"The Sails of Charon" was also used in the videogame Gran Turismo 5.

On "Born To Touch Your Feelings" a guest woman's voices can be heard. They are performed by some friends and fans: Junko and Mutsumi from Japan, Esther from Suriname, Rosa from Rom, Susan from L.A. and Leila from Tahiti.

Personnel[edit]

Band members
Production

Covered songs[edit]

References[edit]

  1. ^ Hill, Gary (before 2007). "Taken by Force - Scorpions | AllMusic". allmusic.com. Retrieved 28 September 2011. 
  2. ^ user arfenhausen (2007). "Scorpions - Taken By Force (album review) | Sputnikmusic". sputnikmusic.com. Retrieved 28 September 2011. 
  3. ^ Taken By Force (Media notes). Scorpions. Japan: Breeze Music for Toshiba EMI Limited. 2001. TOCP-53202. 
  4. ^ Syrjälä, Marko. "Interview with Uli Jon Roth". Metal-rules.com. Retrieved May 12, 2008.