UFO In-depth Biography
Vocalist Phil Mogg}, guitarist Mick Bolton}, bassist Pete Way}, and drummer Andy Parker} formed the British space} metal} outfit UFO} in 1969. Originally known as Hocus Pocus, the group, which took the name UFO} in honor of a London club, debuted in 1971 with UFO 1}. Both the album and its follow-up, the same year's Flying}, found great success in Japan, France, and Germany, but went barely noticed in the band's native country; as a result, their third effort, 1972's Live}, was released only in Japan.
In 1974, Bolton} left the group; after brief trial runs with ex-Pink Fairies} guitarist Larry Wallis} and future Whitesnake} member Bernie Marsden}, former Scorpion} Michael Schenker} stepped in as a permanent replacement in time to record 1974's Phenomenon}, which sported a harder-edged guitar sound. After 1975's Force It} and 1976's No Heavy Petting} brought UFO} increased visibility with American audiences, keyboardist Paul Raymond} joined for 1977's Lights Out}. However, after 1978's Obsession}, Schenker} left the group, first to rejoin the Scorpions} and later to form his own band. Despite the addition of guitarist Paul Chapman}, the next UFO} LP, No Place to Run}, failed to match the success of its predecessors.
In 1982, the band released Mechanix}, notching a minor U.S. hit with "Back into My Life"}; later that year, Way} exited to form Waysted} and was replaced by ex-Eddie & the Hot Rods} bassist Paul Gray}. After 1983's Making Contact}, UFO} dissolved, only to re-form two years later for Misdemeanor}; however, the album was met with little response, and they again called it quits. In 1993, the group's most popular lineup -- Mogg}, Schenker}, Way}, Raymond}, and Parker} -- reunited and recorded the 1995 album Walk on Water}; after a tour, the members yet again went their separate ways. Mogg} and Way} continued to work as Mogg/Way} and released the albums Edge of the World} (1997) and Chocolate Box} (1999). Schenker} rejoined in 2000 along with veteran drummer Aynsley Dunbar} for the two-CD Covenant}, which featured one disc of new studio recordings along with one disc of live recordings. Sharks} came out in 2002; then Schenker} and Dunbar} departed and were replaced by Vinnie Moore} and Jason Bonham} respectively. This new band welcomed returning keyboardist Paul Raymond} for 2004's You Are Here} and 2005's live album Showtime}. Bonham} was the next to leave and was replaced by the band's original drummer, Andy Parker}, for 2006's The Monkey Puzzle}. ~ Jason Ankeny, All Music Guide