UFO ‘Making Contact’
Album Review by Adam McCann
Chrysalis Records/1983/Hard Rock
By 1983, UFO were running on fumes, years of heavy drinking and drug abuse had left the band almost high and dry, yet the biggest blow of all was about to come. Following the conclusion of the ‘Mechanix’ tour, founding member and iconic bassist Pete Way disillusioned with the softer approach that UFO had begun to take, announced that he was leaving the band. Without Way, UFO decided to limp on releasing ‘Making Contact’ in 1983.
‘Making Contact’ was not well received and UFO felt like a band out of time. However, in retrospect, the album contains many decent songs, side one in particular with the single ‘When It’s Time to Rock’. However, this is not the only track worth listening to, Phil Mogg’s disdain of record company legalities froths to the surface during ‘Blinded by a Lie’ and its follow up ‘Diesel in the Dust’ with its smooth production and rattling double bass drums.
Unfortunately, most of the songs feel more like UFO by numbers, Mogg runs on autopilot, giving his best Phil Lynott impression during ‘A Fool for Love’ alongside some really dubious lyrics about underage girls, for example, ‘Where the Wild Wind Blows’ and ‘Call My Name’. However, it is the guitaring of Paul Chapman which saves this album, this man does not get the plaudits he deserves for defining the guitar sound of UFO in the early 80’s and when coupled with Neil Carter’s song writing prowess, ‘Making Contact’ is packaged into something that is actually better sounding than 1980’s ‘No Place to Run’.
‘Making Contact’ is far from UFO’s best album, yet, as with every Chapman album, there are some hidden gems that are definitely worth listening to.
Rating : 70/100
MHF Magazine/Adam McCann