U.D.O.-Celebrator: Rare Tracks
Sooner or later you knew it was bound to happen. After 25 years and 13 full-length albums we are finally getting an odds and ends collection of unreleased songs, rare tracks and exclusive remixes from the one and only U.D.O. himself. Over the course of 2 CDs you get 25 songs that run the gamut from simply smashing to just plain weird: "Balls To The Wall (Piano Version)" anyone? Good to bad it's all here in the shape of alternate versions of classic songs to previously unreleased material (some of which should have been released and some of which I could take or leave) and of course some killer guest appearances like "Head Over Heels" (Hammerall feat. Udo Dirkschneider) and "They Only Come Out At Night" (Lordi feat. Udo Dirkschneider). My favorite cover on this 2 CD set would have to be Raven and Udo taking on "Born To Be Wild". I have a N.W.O.B.H.M. sampler somewhere in my mess of a room with this older song on it and I always had a soft spot for it. That said of all the material it is perhaps the piano ballads that surprised me the most. Udo shows himself to be more then capable of pulling off these simple arrangements and, as weird as they may sound on paper, they do work to a degree. Considering the fact that "Balls To The Wall" was the first Accept song I ever heard and from there I grew to love both Accept and Udo it is all the more interesting to hear it arranged like this. It's so simple and yet so far from left field that it defies logic and only God knows why it works as well as it does. All told this is one of those collections that features more strong moments then throwaway tracks thankfully since that is always the fear with these sort of albums. It has some really strong moments and I'd have to say it's a must own for U.D.O. fans.