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Electric Light Orchestra - Electric Light Orchestra [Aka: No Answer] CD (album) cover


Electric Light Orchestra


Crossover Prog

3.63 | 307 ratings

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Prog Reviewer
1 stars I found this unlistenable back in the day. And I'll be the first to tell you that this album has not aged well since then.

It's a shame that 10538 Orchestra was released on this piece of vinyl, because that really is an interesting song. It's not so great that it saves this album, but it is a worthwhile listening experience that stacks up well when compared with the best material on On The Third Day. Of the other songs, The Battle of Marston Moor is a listenable instrumental. The rest of this album sets my teeth on edge, though.

I see that I am going to be in the minority with my opinion of this album, but I have to say that I would not recommend this album to anyone. Not even to the biggest ELO fan. Not even to Jeff Lynne's mom. One star for what in my opinion is an utter flop save for one fairly decent song.

EDIT: I have been invited (challenged?) to provide a bit more in the way of specifics on why I feel that this is an utter flop.

Let's start with production, which may be the least important issue but which covers the whole album. While the inclusion of the various unusual instruments into the mix is on a par with the recording of the whole album, the whole album is rather inferior and muddled from a production standpoint.

Let's consider the single next, Mr. Radio. (And my comments here also are valid for Nellie Takes Her Bow and Look At Me Now, for the most part.) This is a cheezy attempt to copy the originality and innovation that the Beatles brought to rock, without the originality and the innovation, but with plenty of cheese. Mr. Radio (and Nellie to a lesser extent) has the saving grace of those really subtle string parts in the background if you listen closely, but mostly this is a really poor attempt at mixing classical with psych rock.

Finally, let's discuss Queen Of The Hours. It's probably the best of these poor tracks after the two that I think are actually worth listening to. It has a catchy vocal line. But in this case I think that unusual instrumentation (which is pounded over the head of the unfortunate listener) detracts significantly from whatever quality this song had. Frankly, the instrumentation here is barbaric.

Again, I realize that I am in the minority in my opinion of this album. Again, I think that 10538 is a good track and that Marston Moor is not a bad track. But God help me, I cannot recommend the album as a whole to anybody, and people are just going to have to live with my opinion. After all, I manage to live with their denigration of Genesis's ABACAB. They can surely do the same.

ghost_of_morphy | 1/5 |


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