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Emerson Lake & Palmer - I Believe In Father Christmas CD (album) cover


Emerson Lake & Palmer

Symphonic Prog

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Honorary Collaborator
2 stars This is a very nice little sampler of seasonal tunes from the band. 'I Believe in Father Christmas' and Prokofiev's 'Lt. Kije Suite' are both rousing holiday numbers done in a synth-rock style that evoke snowy days and sleighbells. The rest of the EP contains 'Humbug' and closes with 'Nutrocker' from their classic album 'Pictures at an Exhibition'. If you really want an ELP holiday album, I would highly recommend Keith Emerson's 'The Christmas Album' (re-released several times) but this will do in a pinch and makes a good stocking stuffer.
Report this review (#93952)
Posted Tuesday, October 10, 2006 | Review Permalink
2 stars ELP's I Believe In Father Christmas, the only EP released over their whole career, is truly an album that is only for the fans. The two versions of the great title track are extremely similar, and I really didn't notice much difference between the two, so there doesn't seem to be a reason to include both. Nutrocker is the best track here, but it would be more worthwhile to get Pictures At An Exhibition, which is a much better overall listen and includes this version of Nutrocker as the encore. Troika and Humbug don't have much substance, and produce an empty feeling for the listener. The pair are essentially hollow synth tracks, and Humbug is a prime example of a filler track. Surprising, considering this is an EP, which already lacks the additional content to make a good full album! Additionally, if you were to seek I Believe In Father Christmas Works Vol II would be preferable, which at least provides another hour's worth of music for the ELP fan. While half the songs of this collection are excellent, the EP is ultimately unnecessary. It's really only for completionists, but the music quality is a bit better than poor. 2 Stars.
Report this review (#159601)
Posted Wednesday, January 23, 2008 | Review Permalink
Crossover & JR/F/Canterbury Teams
2 stars This barely seems to be an ELP album, as the first track is Greg Lake's original solo version of I Believe In Father Christmas, the second sounds like a Keith Emerson solo take on Prokofiev's Lieutenant Kije Suite (Lake and Palmer do not seem to be on this), and Humbug is from a Greg Lake solo project as well. The remaining two tracks are from Works, Vol. 2 and Pictures At An Exhibition as well.

Troika is the only major reason for a prog enthusiast to want this album, as all of the other tracks are available elsewhere. This is a nice Emersonian take on the classical theme that pops up in the title track of this EP.

Humbug is a short jazzy piece around repeated harmonized "humbug"s. It's cute, but ultimately forgettable.

Report this review (#241857)
Posted Monday, September 28, 2009 | Review Permalink

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