When German rock heroes Scorpionsconquered America it was, to borrow one of their album titles, love at first sting. Throughout the 1980s, especially, the Hanover outfit were racking up gold and platinum albums in America for fun, with a series of releases that not only sold in huge numbers, but had real staying power. No fewer than five of their titles had runs of more than 40 weeks on the Billboard 200.
On 7 May 1988, the band entered that chart with their tenth studio album and first in four years, Savage Amusement, which contained the No. 6 hit on the Hot Mainstream Rock Tracks chart, ‘Rhythm Of Love.’ The album itself took just a few weeks to go platinum in the US, and reached No. 5, their highest-ever peak, in another epic sequence of 43 weeks on the countdown.
Savage Amusement also went platinum in Canada and was gold in their native Germany as well as in France, Finland and Switzerland. In the UK, where Scorpions sold steadily, it was their fourth consecutive top 20 album, reaching No. 18.
The album had a somewhat more polished and less raucous flavour about it compared to previous Scorpions releases. It also marked the end of an era, as it was the last to be overseen by producer Dieter Dierks, with whom they then ended their 20-year relationship. It was recorded at his Dierks Studios I, II, III, Cologne, Germany and at Scorpio Sound Studios in Hannover.
If some fans expressed disappointment with the new release, which came as Def Leppard were upping the rock ante with their globe-straddling sound, there were still some moments of spirited rocking on the record, notably on ‘We Let it Rock…You Let it Roll’ and ‘Love on the Run.’ The band celebrated the release of Savage Amusement by taking part in the Monsters of Rock live package and then playing 50 headlining North American shows of their own.