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Alan Parsons Band - A Valid Path CD (album) cover


Alan Parsons Band


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2.59 | 92 ratings

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4 stars 1.Return to Trunguska. Can't get enough of this dark, smoldering instrumental! With this piece Parsons reaffirmed the loyalty of his existing fans and probably gained a few new ones. Innovating, through and through. The rhythm is complex and subtle. There's a little bit of euro/techno - just enough to have a reference point: the concept itself is groundbreaking. Parsons extends euro/techno naturally, possibly setting a new tone in this musical domain. Interestingly, the piece hints at aliens. I kept having this persistent vision of an alien ship coming to dock after a long, tiring voyage! The voice distortions are used sparingly and with taste, enhancing the mystique (instead of destroying it). I rarely throw so much praise around, but RTT deserves it! Oh yes, there's David Gilmour doing his thing on the guitar. His patented Pink Floyd motifs are pretty good. However, the impact of the screaming guitar solo is questionable, at best. Well, depending on what frame of mind you're in while listening to RTT. To me, it sounded too rock-and-roll compared to RTT's otherworldly outlook. 2.More lost without you. A catchy song. I wouldn't be surprised to hear it on the radio some day. 3.Mannagamma. Alan Parsons decided to let his son tinker with synths. The result was a remake of the original and a startling lack of imaginativeness and musicianship. It neither offers anything new nor does justice to the original. Instead, it consists of some silly sound effects layered over the familiar main theme, all of which can be done by pressing a few buttons on a decent synthesizer. Why did they bother? 4.We play the game. I liked this song for its originality and for Parsons' singing. 5.Tijuaniac. Mexican musical elements, Stereotomy's Urbania and Dark Side of the Moon all find their way into this one. I am pretty sure Parsons took a trip to Tijuana after his move to California. Who could've imagined Mexican trumpets in an Alan Parsons album?! Although Parsons music has struck me with its originality so many times before, in my twisted brain "original folk music" is an oxymoron and, IHO, Parsons shouldn't go that way. 6.L'arc en Ciel. Like RTT, this is another instrumental hit! The rainy, soothing introduction is deceiving, for it rapidly morphs into a high-energy, contagious theme. Original. 7.A recurring dream within a dream. See Mannagamma. 8.You can run. What's going on in here? 9.Chamalungma. John Cleese makes funny noises, the coyotes are howling, but WHY? I was under the impression that Parsons was in hurry to finish the album at this point.

Overall, a few pieces were excellent, but some were not good. Regardless, I'd like to think of "A Valid Path" as a sort of transition. Alan Parsons may yet come up with a few groundbreaking albums. He should find Santa Barbara an inspiring place to make new music. Best wishes to him and his family!

| 4/5 |


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