Rock Legends UFO Release Covers Album, “The Salentino Tapes,” Interview With Guitarist Vinnie Moore

Release Date: September 29, 2017

LOS ANGELES – Legendary British rockers, UFO, have released their first-ever “covers” album, a collection of favorites representing a wide range of styles, including some songs you might expect, and others, perhaps not. Released on Cleopatra Records, The Salentino Tapes is available on both CD and two, limited-edition vinyl pressings – one splatter vinyl and one on white.


Article by Joe Milliken * Photos courtesy of Glass Onyon PR

Formed in London in 1969, UFO would become quite influential in bridging early hard rock with both heavy metal and the New Wave of British Heavy Metal (N.W.O.B.H.M.). Although never quite a “household name” in America, UFO has enjoyed four-plus decades of success around the world, certainly affirming they’ve been doing something right all these years!

Over a 48-year span, UFO has released a total of 22 studio albums, 14 live recordings and a dozen compilations, and have now sold over 10 million albums worldwide. They have influenced generations of rock bands, including Metallica, Iron Maiden, Def Leppard, Guns ‘N’ Roses, Pearl Jam, Rage Against The Machine, Slayer, Testament, and The Smashing Pumpkins to name but a few.

The “classic lineup” (1973-1978) featured front-man Phil Mogg on vocals, Michael Schenker on guitar, Pete Way on bass and Andy Parker on drums. Mick Bolton was the original guitarist and departed in 1972, making way for Schenker to join the band, who had previously been a member of the Scorpions with his brother Rudolph. Other musicians who have recorded and toured with UFO over the years include guitarists Paul Chapman (1980), Neil Carter (1981), and Atomic Tommy M (1984), bassists Billy Sheehan (1982) and Paul Gray (The Damned), and drummers Jason Bonham (2004) and Aynsley Dunbar (2000), to name a few.

UFO’s current lineup features original front-man, Mogg, on vocals and Andy Parker on drums. Keyboardist/guitarist, Paul Raymond, has been with the band since 1976, and guitarist, Vinnie Moore (Alice Cooper), since 2003. American bassist, Rob De Luca (Sabastian Bach) joined UFO in 2012.

Released on September 29, choosing the tracks to cover on The Salentino Tapes certainly proved to be more difficult than the band expected. “Everyone in the band came up with anything they could think of, that might be cool to cover,” UFO guitarist, Vinnie Moore, recently told Standing Room Only. “There were probably more than 100 songs mentioned, some of them were eliminated immediately, some of them were ‘maybes,’ and some everyone liked and wanted to do.

“So, we just sort of honed in on it from there, and it was fun at first, but the process dragged on for so long that it kind of became a pain in the ass. It was sometimes tough to make a one hundred percent commitment to some of the songs, because you can second guess yourself (about the song choices) too much. At some point, you just need to roll with it. It just took a while for us to get to that point.”

Some of the final choices include classic songs by The Doors, Robin Trower, ZZ Top, Yardbirds, Montrose, Steppenwolf and Mountain, as well as some curve balls, such as John Mellencamp, Mad Season and Bill Withers.

UFO is currently finishing the American-leg of their 2017 world tour, supported by the N.W.O.B.H.M. legends, Saxon, which ends in mid-October in Indianapolis. The live set list covers many of the UFO classics, from “Only You Can Rock Me,” “Lights Out,” and “Too Hot To Handle,” to “Shoot Shoot,” “Rock Bottom,” and “Doctor Doctor,” and the band also has plans to mix in a few of the new cover songs moving forward. “Making this covers album was a blast, and yes, we certainly want to play some of the songs live,” Moore added. “As of yet, we haven’t played any of them, but that is changing very soon. I’ve also got a solo tour coming in December, with my friend Gus G.”

To learn more about UFO, check tour dates and order the new CD, please visit www.ufo-music.info and www.ufo.band. You can also check out Cleopatra Records at www.CleopatraRecords.com. Also watch Standing Room Only for an upcoming CD review of The Salentino Tapes, as well as a UFO concert review that SRO witnessed from the current tour.