Scorpions – ‘Gold Ballads’ (1984) – Album Review (The Scorpions Collection Series)

In the U.S., the label was capitalizing on the Scorpions success by releasing a compilation, so why not the European labels. 1984 was a big year for the Scorpions so lets milk it for what we can was the attitude of the day!. With the massive success of their ballad “Still Loving You”, why not release an E.P. of their best ballads and pick those from four of their best albums, ‘Lovedrive, ‘Animal Magnetism’, ‘Blackout’ and ‘Love at First Sting’. And ballads are big sellers, so it made perfect sense.

My copy is the German release…yes, I have a bunch of German releases as I found all of these at one of our local record shows (not stores, but the record shows where there are all the goodies). The album was released on October 13, 1984 with multiple reissues over the next couple years across Europe. This copy I have is from the original release in Germany. It is a 5 song E.P. and let me tell you, it is a great set of ballads. I also love that the cover is probably an outtake photo from the ‘Love at First Sting’ album cover shoot.

Sit back and let us go trough it for you.

SEITE 1:

“Still Loving You”, from ‘Love at First Sting’, is one of my favorite Scorpions ballads and one of my favorite all time as well. About a couple in love that knows it’s over, but try to make it work one more time. The song opens with some gentle, soft riffing and Klaus singing in almost a whisper. Then the power part of the ballad kicks in and the guitar licks are blissfully beautiful and the chorus is gut-wrenchingly heartbreaking and lovely at the same time. I think this might one of Klaus Meine’s best vocal performances on any album.

“Holiday”, from ‘Lovedrive’, is an acoustic, heartfelt masterpiece. A six minute journey that is both tender and sweet at times and feels like a long dance with a loved one. It does ramp up some energy for a brief moment before going back to the softer side of the band. The burst of energy is what helps it take it to another level. Both these first two track ended their respective albums and what a way to go out.

SEITE 2:

“When the Smoke is Going Down”, from ‘Blackout’, is a pure ballad. It is soft musically and vocally as Klaus tones it down but still sounds amazing, so crisp and clean. The solo, by Schenker, is again, not fancy, see what I can do playing. It is simple and is played for the song. The song is airy and light and simple. Another ballad that ended one of their albums. I’m noticing a trend.

Always Somewhere”, another from ‘Lovedrive’, has everything so soft and gentle to the touch. Klaus almost whispers at times and at times he almost screams the chorus but keeps himself restrained and it is filled with tenderness. The chorus might be a little cheesy, but it is very contagious and inviting. On the solo, by Mathias Jabs, he plays it perfectly for the song.

“Lady Starlight”, from ‘Animal Magnetism’, is one of the only songs (or only song) with any type of orchestration of both strings and horns and though they were going for sophistication with the adds, it felt more pretentious to me. I know lot of people love this song, but for me it comes across as not authentic or believable. They have better ballads then this one, but I admit, I have softened a little to it over time.

I definitely understand why the label felt compelled to release an E.P. of ballads as they are usually really big sellers. Making it an E.P. was smart as a full album of them could be a little too much and hard to sit through in a listen. But this is just enough to fill that ballad urge that might pop up. There are no new mixes or anything, but still a great listen if you have a little time and want a little quiet. These are some of their best ballads and who are we kidding, even some of their best songs period. Grab it if you see it. My Overall Score is a 4.0 out of 5.0 Stars as I am still a little chilly to “Lady Starlight”, but it is growing on me.

NEXT UP: WORLD WIDE LIVE (1985)

THE SCORPIONS COLLECTION SERIES:

  1. Lonesome Crow (1972)
  2. Fly to the Rainbow (1974)
  3. In Trance (1975)
  4. Virgin Killer (1976)
  5. Taken by Force (1977)
  6. Tokyo Tapes (1978)
  7. Lovedrive (1979)
  8. Best of Scorpions (1979)
  9. Animal Magnetism (1980)
  10. Rock Galaxy (1980) – Bonus Edition
  11. Blackout (1982)
  12. Hot & Heavy (1982)
  13. Love at First Sting (1984)
  14. Still Loving You Maxi Single (1984)
  15. Best of Scorpions Vol. 2 (1984)
  16. Gold Ballads (1984)
  17. World Wide Live (1985)
  18. Savage Amusement (1988)
  19. Rhythm of Love – Single (Box Set) (1988)
  20. Best of Rockers ‘n’ Ballads (1989)
  21. Crazy World (1990)
  22. Crazy World – 4 Track From Crazy World Promo Vinyl (1990)
  23. Tease Me Please Me Promo CD (1990)
  24. Don’t Believe Her Promo CD (1990)
  25. Send Me An Angle Promo CD (1991)
  26. Face the Heat (1993)
  27. Live Bites (1995)
  28. Pure Instinct (1996)
  29. Big City Nights (Compilation) (1998)
  30. Eye II Eye (1999)
  31. Moment of Glory (with Berlin Philharmonic Orchestra) (2000)
  32. Acoustica (2001)
  33. Unbreakable (2004)
  34. Humanity: Hour 1 (2007)
  35. Sting in the Tail (2010)
  36. Comeblack (2011)
  37. MTV Unplugged – Live in Athens (2013)
  38. Return to Forever (2015)
  39. Rock Believer (2022)
  40. The Albums Ranked Worst to First

19 thoughts on “Scorpions – ‘Gold Ballads’ (1984) – Album Review (The Scorpions Collection Series)

  1. I feel really bad for their bass player. How many people have called him Francis Buttholz over the years? Of course, his English may not be good enough for him to understand anyway.

    Liked by 2 people

  2. The title of this album scares me man lol. Suppose if you are a power ballad fan than this is right up your alley but not mine. I do like the fact that you scored German pressings and your right that cover is pretty cool.

    Liked by 2 people

  3. That’s an interesting release, and a very nice collection of songs. Still Loving You is pretty much the king of ballads. I do like Lady Starlight but I can see what you’re saying about it. It does “stick out” a bit.

    Liked by 1 person

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