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Eloy - The Best of Eloy Vol. 2 - The Prime 1976-1979 CD (album) cover




Psychedelic/Space Rock

3.57 | 20 ratings

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3 stars Whereas the sister Eloy compilation The Best Of Eloy works as a seamless album The Best Of Eloy II is slightly disjointed. One reason for this might be that each of the three albums from which this compilation draws its material is a concept album with three distinct styles and concepts (although conversely I felt no such problems on the earlier compilation which also featured music from the concept album The Power And The Passion).

Another interesting aspect about The Best Of Eloy II is that the group was completely reorganised between The Power and The Passion and its successor Dawn, with only lead singer/guitarist Frank Bornemann remaining. The loss of keyboardist Manfred Wieczorke was soften by the arrival of the equally talented Detlev Schmidtchen, although I'm one of those who (marginally) prefers the earlier rawer Eloy sound.

The pieces from Dawn include Awakening which is basically the sounds of thunder and a string-laden pseudo-classical intro to the excellent Between The Times, a song that builds up from a moody acoustic verse intro a monster hard-rock riff "What do you know, my son?" sings Bornemann and I swoon! I also really love the bottom heavy solo segment that smack of classic 70s hard rock ... it's a great, great song. The Sun Song is basically an atmospheric ballad that I can take or leave while The Midnight Fight/The Victory Of Mental Force is a return to Eloy's strength's with some nice riffs and changes, but the usage of string synths instead of the muscular organ work that Eloy would have employed in the past weakens the song for me.

Decay Of The Logos is a fantastic piece of music, with powerful vocals, great interplay between the rhythm section and a fine synth solo, but I really feel it needs to be listened to along with the rest of its parent album Ocean, not as part of this compilation.

The pieces off the Silent Cries And Mighty Echoes also work better as part of their parent album than as part of this compilation. With its spacey synths and sparse, biting lead guitar Astral Entrance sounds shockingly like a portion from Pink Floyd's Shine On You Crazy Diamond suite. It segues into the brilliant Master Of Sensation which is probably my favourite latter-day Eloy song. Despite a modern (for 1979) synth sound, it bears some of the hallmarks of classic Eloy with my favourite Bornemann vocals, a monster synth solo from Schmidtchen, and nice interlaced rhythms. This compilation concludes with the three part epic The Apocalypse, which again has multi-layered spacey synths, extended guitar solos, thankfullly a bit of organ as well ... the final part has Schmidtchen challenging Vangelis, Eno and the Tangerine Dream lads (I mean Schulze too) as the space synth king but while it's pretty cool, it's not what I really love.

Ultimately a true-blue Eloy fan will want all the albums, but while The Best Of Eloy I does a great job of compressing the essence of Eloy from 1972-1975 on one CD, I feel that the albums from the 1976-1979 period have to be enjoyed on their own. ... 64% on the MPV scale

Trotsky | 3/5 |


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