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Emerson Lake & Palmer - Brain Salad Surgery CD (album) cover


Emerson Lake & Palmer


Symphonic Prog

4.17 | 2128 ratings

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4 stars This record is the best of the ELP's albums. It is definitely an exhibition of 3 virtuosos: Emerson shows us that he is the master of the Hammond organ, and that he outstandingly masters the piano and the heroic polyphonic synthesizer. Carl Palmer gives a solid fast & complex performance on drums: I think he is at his best here. Lake's excellent voice and the overall sound are enhanced by a subtle and fresh echo; Lake's bass is complex enough to support well the very exigent keyboards & drums. One can recognize some parts here from which the band Triumvirat was inspired to make their "Spartacus" and "Pompeii" albums. The album has an obvious jazz tendency, as revealed by fast and complex piano & drums parts. The interesting thing is that, despite the outstanding technical performance, the tracks are really accessible, melodic and very structured. Unlike "Tarkus", this album mostly is not experimental.

The epic "Karn Evil" is just quintessential, full of changing moods. On the other side, the tracks are shorter and may be very addictive, like the catchy "Jerusalem". Unfortunately, "Toccata" is the weak point of this album: it is VERY experimental: this dark track is not catchy at all, it does not shine like the other ones, despite the instruments are still perfectly played. "Still... you turn me on" has excellent acoustic guitar parts and it is very accessible and catchy, still remaining quite elaborated. The odd "Benny the bouncer" does not fit very well with the other tracks, although the saloon piano, the unrefined vocals and the funny mood are likeable.

Modern bands like Pallas and Asia have similar epic keyboards elements; so, for 1973, this was huge!

Rating: 4.5 stars

greenback | 4/5 |


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