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Emerson Lake & Palmer - Emerson Lake & Palmer CD (album) cover


Emerson Lake & Palmer


Symphonic Prog

4.24 | 1913 ratings

From, the ultimate progressive rock music website

3 stars The Barbarian really starts things off nicely. The malevolent and dark keyboard, complimented by violent fuzz bass and aggressive drums, really sets a mood here. I find this track to be very accessible. Even my cousin, who is a "gangstah rap" fan enjoyed this track when he first heard it. After the aggressive introduction, the song fades a bit to a piano section, emphasized by Carl Palmer's brushes on the snare drum. It later picks up again, and ends on a high note. A very well written opening track to a fantastic debut album.

This album tends to jump from keyboard heavy, amazingly talented instrumentals right to softer, sensitive (acoustic, often) songs. The latter, written and sung by Greg Lake, do well to balance with ELP's more violent nature. But even during these fast-paced, exciting outings, the band does well not to over-do everything, and still rely heavily on their fantastic writing skills, as opposed to depending altogether on their musicianship. It was these more passive songs that won ELP the majority of their air-play, even though the band clearly eschews commercial success. The most popular of these songs is held within this album: Lucky Man. But do well not to overlook the other song of Lake's here: Take a Pebble. Flowing from one musical environment to another, this track is certainly different from its more radio-friendly brethren, as it is still very experimental and atmospheric in nature.

And let us not overlook the piano opus of The Three Fates (reference to Greek Mythology). I found this track to take a few tries before I enjoyed it to its full extent. The piano section in the middle (surnamed Lachesis) is very beautiful and almost surreal.

As we all know, ELP is one of the most technically gifted packs of musicians. Tank is an opportunity for Carl Palmer to show off his skills, as The Three Fates was for Keith Emerson. Does he ever! This drum solo is actually one of my favourites ever recorded.

This is a debut album full of many many great ideas, and executed with elegance and originality. All the musicians are very gifted and put their talents to good use. Excellent work, E, L, and P.

Shakespeare | 3/5 |


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