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Eloy - Metromania CD (album) cover

METROMANIA

Eloy

 

Psychedelic/Space Rock

3.17 | 324 ratings

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istef
3 stars Written and produced in 1984. Quite obvious! Gone is the warmth of the 70s sound, replaced by the typcal sterilized 80s synth sound. So if one wants to enjoy an Eloy album fron this era, one has to compromise with this kind of sound.

But that doesn't make Metromania a bad album. Far from it actually. Once the listener gets passed these certain production values, is left with an album that is Eloy up to its deep core. As usually with this band, it's not about creating strong song structures, but merely the atmosphere that will embrace these songs, and as usually again, it works. Not perfectly, not at all times, but it works.

"Escape to the Heights" sets an unusual tense tone. It is fast (for Eloy standards) and heavily orchstrated, with distorted synth guitar sounds that set the pace. "All life is One" is the track most reminiscent of the late 70s Eloy. And of course that also means a lot of Pink Floyd influences. Especially in the vocal department. "The Stranger" could have a spot on the "Momentary Lapse of Reason" album, had it been release yet! On vinyl side B, "Nightriders" is a welcome, more riff driven surprise with a cool guitar solo. The album closes on a high end with the title track, probably the best track on the album.

Instumentally, there is not much to say. No fancy or imaginative solos or melodies, relatively uninspired rythm section, that serves the sole purpose of creating the atmosphere the album is going for. The main protagonist are of course the keys and synths, helped by Bornemann's heavy guitars, but neither instrument offers something mindblowing. On the vocal department Frank makes his best out of his limited but adequate abilities. A nice vocal surprise comes with the mostly female dominated ensemble on "Follow the Light".

All in all, Metromania is a fine album, characteristic of its era, meant to be listened as a whole. There are no unsurpassable heights but no bottom end lows either. If you can stand the 80s production, it's an enjoyable listen, if not (and I wouldn't blame you!) go back to Dawn or Ocean, or forward to Ocean 2. 3 stars, no more no less.

istef | 3/5 |

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