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Emerson Lake & Palmer - Tarkus CD (album) cover


Emerson Lake & Palmer


Symphonic Prog

4.06 | 1669 ratings

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5 stars A masterpiece of prog that every one should NOT miss .

This album is definitely a masterpiece of progressive rock from the glory days of seventies. The epic Tarkus that opens the album is really the thing about this album. It comprises seven parts that connect beautifully as one cohesive whole. It stands out excellently as a legendary epic with twenty minutes plus duration. Amazingly, every time I listen to this epic I never feel that the track consumes that long as at the end I always feel like "Is that it? How come so fast it reaches the end of the epic?" And you can guess what I usually do. Yes, you bet! I repeat this epic for second time before I proceed with next track. Why? Simply put this epic delivers fabulous musical experience for me from first part "Eruption" where I usually amazed with the fact that it's played by three gentlemen - how can three people can produce a music with very high density? The Hammond organ and keyboard played by Keith Emerson is really stunning - dynamic and inventive. The bass line by Greg Lake is also excellent. Carl Palmer delivers his machine gun drumming flawlessly. Enuff to say that this is an excellent outfit. The music flows dynamically with frequent tempo changes to second part "Stones of Years" where Lake delivers his powerful voice with various style. This part is dynamic and energetic, composed and performed in symphonic prog style with soaring organ works and inventive drumming. It then moves dynamically to "Iconoclast - Mass - Manticore" with energetic style and it slows down in "Battlefields" with great vocal. The "Aquatarkus" concludes the epic wonderfully.

"Jeremy Bender" is a short track with piano as main rhythm section, performed elegantly with an excellent combination of vocal and drumming. It's not typical ELP song but I do enjoy this track. "Bitches Crystal" sounds like opening of Tarkus at the beginning but when the vocal enters it sounds differently; combined beautifully with inventive piano outfit. Greg Lake sings in unique style with high register notes. The piano solo is amazing, combined with solid bass lines and great drumming.

"The Only Way" is a mellow track with killing melody. It starts with melodic organ solo opening in classical style. When the tiny vocal enters the music, it even makes the music much more melodic with killing notes on vocal. In the middle of the track the piano solo turns into jazzy style. Marvelous! It continues seamlessly to "Infinite Space (Conclusion)" where the piano / organ expands its inventive work beautifully. It continues with "A Time and A Place" with great vocal and soaring organ sounds. These three tracks must be listened continuously as they form like a small epic if you listen to them eventually. Even, I recommend you to listen to this album in its entirety from first epic to last track.

The concluding track is the band's interpretation of rock'n'roll and an appreciation and tribute to Eddy Offord - the Engineer of this groundbreaking album. It's kind of loose leaf if we compare with other tracks but as I have listened to this album for years it finally has engrained as part of the overall theme of this album.


Progressively yours, GW

The Context: I remember vividly that I knew this album years after I was so familiar with Brain Salad Surgery where one of the songs "Karn Evil 9" really BLEW me away and has become my all-time favorite. I owned Tarkus through Monalisa cassette (which I still keep it until now even though I have the CD issued by Rhino). Whenever I listen to this album I always remember my childhood where rock music was like daily rice (bread is not common in my country, especially my childhood in small town Madiun) and nothing in life so interesting than rock music - not to mention the boring thing about studying uughh ... So, I must admit that even until today I'm still touched with this album. To put precisely on what I feel about the impact of this album to me, I would rather put it with my locality term: nggeblak! Yes, you bet! This album makes me stunned; my mind seems paralyzed enjoying the wonderful harmony this album has infused into my ears, my mind and my heart. Thanks ELP! You make me delighted.

Gatot | 5/5 |


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