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

LOVE BEACH

Emerson Lake & Palmer

 

Symphonic Prog

2.08 | 663 ratings

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The Mentalist
2 stars "Is this album as futuristic as 'Brain Salad Surgery?" I hear you ask. "Is it fuck", comes the swift reply. But seriously, 'Love Beach, for the most part, is an embarrassing collection of songs designed to curry favour with the A&R men of the time, and show that ELP had "commercial/chart Potential". HA! I mean, look at the cover; when did ELP turn into the Bee Gees???!!!!!

The short songs are bad; very bad. The production is awful; extremely awful. The haircuts are tragic, magnificently tragic. As for the lyrics. . .I know ELP 's lyrics have never been great , but on this album they plum new depth of awfulness. "I want to dynamite your mind. . ." sings Greg Lake as he pleads for 'A taste of your love'. Someone should have dynamited Greg Lake for coming up with such a crap song. To compliment the awful short songs and lyrics, there's an awful arrangement of Rodrigo's Canario (From Fantasia Para Un Gentilhombre. If you haven't heard Rodrigo's arrangement, then do yourself a favour and go track it down. You won't be disappointed.). ELP's version features the cheesiest guitar synth sound known to mankind. Unfortunately Greg Lake insists on playing the damn thing on just about every track on the album --as if the songs aren't bad enough. The extended track 'Memoirs of an officer and a Gentleman' actually contains some excellent music, but the cheesiness of the sounds, and the slapdash nature of the arrangement and production, make it hard to listen to. Having said that, the opening piano playing is rather beautiful, indeed. But lyrics such as ". . .and thought that central heating was for just old peoples homes. . ." makes it kind of hard to concentrate on the playing for laughing. The second section, 'Love at first sight' once again features some lovely piano playing and some cringe worthy lyrics. The third section, 'Letters from the front" is rather poor and woefully underdeveloped. However, the last track, 'Honourable Company (A March)' is the highlight of the album: a rousing military march with much layered keyboard and military drumming --sort of like a mini 'Abadon's Bolero'. If only it were longer. All in all a very poor album that reflects the stupidity and fickle nature of the music business at the time (see cover) as much as it does ELP's creative bankruptcy.

The Mentalist | 2/5 |

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