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Keith Emerson - Changing States CD (album) cover


Keith Emerson


Crossover Prog

3.30 | 26 ratings

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4 stars Remastered for the Esoteric 2014 edition, originally issued in 1995, three years after EL&P's Black Moon, but recorded BEFORE it in 1989, Changing States is probably the finest album of complainted great keyboard master & wizard Keith Emerson: he was a visionary! man, he was able to interlace baroque music & Bob Dylan's favourites, romantic symphonies & barrelhouse pianos, jazz efforts & classical suggestions. He composed, wrote, played, IMAGINED memorable suites of pieces, like the Three Fates, Pictures at an Exhibition from Musorgskij, Tarkus, the Endless Enigma, Karn-Evil... To say nothing of the Nice! In CS we actually can see true moments of KE's transistion from the EL&P - more & more Lake-oriented - to the new band featuring talented musicians such Kevin Gilbert & Mark Bonilla, in the '90 years so far from us... CS is a sort of molecular improvement, seemingly a strange fruit of inspiration where "disco" "classical" "jazz" & many other styles can "kaleydoscope" one into another. That's the KEY for this intriguing KE's project! Surely sustained & inspired by skilled guys as guitarist Tim Pierce & especially Kevin Gilbert - who suddenly & tragically died in 1996 at the age of 29 - Keith fully developes his imagination & technique, not only for the sparkling brilliance of the Hammond organ, but also for the IDEAS spread all over the pieces... In Shelter From the Rain & The Band Keeps Playing the band featuring Kevin Gilbert... keeps playing a sort of up-to date "disco" seemingly "Hair" inspired. In Ballad & Interlude KE's piano is prominent, but soft & meditative. In Montagues & Capulets - Romeo & Juliet in Black Moon - and also in Abaddon's Bolero form Trilogy, classical suggestions are evident, as tipically in KE's work from the Nice to the EL&P - i.e. in Hebrew tradition Abaddon is the Despoiler, the Destructor, the Angel of the Abyss, finally the Evil, the Inferno... Dulcis in fundo, Another Frontier - Changing States in Black Moon - & especially The Church - main theme for Dario Argento's 1989 horror movie - deserve major flavours: great essays of KE's Hammond treatment, with breathless descending chord progressions in Frontier, & many running shades & rotating blades in The Church solo, which Keith notices was remaked in better, insisting Kevin! However, what's noticeable is probably the Album Project, which admirably alternates "disco" tracks seemingly "musical" inspired, smooth & meditative ballads/interludes mainly for the piano, "classical" inspired themes, the "gem effort" George Gershwin's standard jazz - i.e. KE wasn't properly a jazz pianist! Finally the two astounding aforementioned originals Another Frontier & The Church: they both abundantly worth the price of the entire album!
black/note | 4/5 |


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