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Eloy - Destination CD (album) cover

DESTINATION

Eloy

Psychedelic/Space Rock


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Joolz
SPECIAL COLLABORATOR
Honorary Collaborator
2 stars Coming to Destination after Ra is one heck of a let down! While it is true the awful artificial percussion has been ditched in favour of a proper drummer, yet the progressive approach has also largely been abandoned in favour of generic song-based arena-rock anthems [eg Fire And Ice], heavy metal licks [eg Prisoner Of Mind] and guitar-god posturing [eg Eclipse Of Mankind]. It may be more accessible, but it is also downright boring in places, the memorable bits generally being confined to catchy vocal licks and melodies.

Fortunately, there are exceptions! Opener, Call Of The Wild is a fine start featuring a pounding beat, one-note bassline and real flute fills. Title track, Destination, also features a flute solo in an arrangement uncomfortably close to 1980s Genesis. It has a straightforward song structure but works quite well, especially when Bornemann's voice morphs into a synth-choir. Jeanne D'Arc is the only concession to Prog, a sprawling piece with a 'complex' structure and a big choir joining in the fun, though your attention tends to waver somewhat before the end.

This is not an album I play very often, nor could I recommend it to anyone other than an Eloy fan. As always, musicianship is of a high standard and there are some nice inventive touches in even the poor songs [eg the kiddies choir in Silent Revolution] but it just doesn't have the true spark of inspiration needed to lift it from the ordinary. Vocals are generally fine, and mostly multi-tracked, though the high harmonies sound a little strained. Overall, the album is not a great success, especially considering the band's glorious history.

Report this review (#100947)
Posted Wednesday, November 29, 2006 | Review Permalink
Eclipse
PROG REVIEWER
2 stars This is slightly "better" than Ra but that's not saying very much, even though the music here is not as sterile as the '88 album. I think they could have put a little more effort in it, or just stop recording if it is to keep staining their legacy. The vocals here are awful, FRANK was never that great as a vocalist, but his voice still had some sort of a "charm" making it bearable and pleasant once you got used to it. But here he sings with a horrible tone, even if the melodies are better developed than in Ra. It's just relieving that they'd make a more decent job on Ocean II, recovering their 70's quality.
Report this review (#109352)
Posted Monday, January 29, 2007 | Review Permalink
ZowieZiggy
PROG REVIEWER
2 stars Three albums in an eight year period. This is a retired pace, isn't it ? It smells as the end of a good band...

I strongly beleive that Bornemann (their leader) should have had a serious backup in terms of composition (especially for the latest releases "Metromania" and "Râ") but more than anything, the need of a truely gifted vocalist who could have brought another (international) dimension to the band. Bornemann's vocals were at best bearable but not more.

This album is no different. On top of this, it features some electro-pop which is far from their roots. They are not convincing for a ? cent in this role. To find a good track on this album demands a gift that I do not possess.

Moments of joy will be scarce on this album. Some good fluting on the opening number "Call of the Wild" as well as during "Destination". A good but short guitar solo on "Racing Shadows" as well as during "Fire & Ice".

One very good song in its entirety : "Eclipse Of Mankind".

An awful one : "Jeanne D'Arc" which is a total nightmare with these stupid orchestrations and one of the poorest vocal performance from dear old Frank.

A useless effort frankly. Two stars.

Report this review (#148807)
Posted Sunday, November 4, 2007 | Review Permalink
progrules
PROG REVIEWER
3 stars Right now I'm doing the duo review with Ra, shortly after each other because I feel these two albums are a bit related. The sound of them is more or less the same. We are talking about a more commercial sounding Eloy compared to their great era in the 70's.

Call of the Wild starts at least a bit spacy like we used to know them but after this the chorus and other vocal contribution prove we are indeed dealing with an almost poppish Eloy here. And that probably also explains the low average of this album. Still instrumentally a good song this but if you hate the overaccessible sound you will not appreciate that enough I fear. And with next track it's more or less the same actually, instrumentally pretty good, almost great even but the vocal aspect ruins it all. Why don't they keep their mouths shut you would think and then I get curious how the album would have sounded in that case. But that's hard to imagine I'm afraid. But it's night and day really, the difference in instrumental and vocal performance, hard to believe but true.

The title track is a little less annoying in the vocal department and is one of the better tracks of this album. Good composition with some nice wind instrumental performances.

Prisoner in Mind is by far the shortest song on the album. It's a pretty energetic song but not really outstanding where the inventiveness and compositional aspect is concerned. Silent Revolution is the longest track and talking about enegetic, this is even better in that department, a song with great rhythm and also here the singing is less out of line than on the first two songs. One of the better songs of the album.

Fire and Ice is a song with some nice acoustic guitar, a nice fluent song without being exceptional. Eclipse of Mankind is the other highlight mainly thanks to excellent guitarplay in the second half of the song. Jeanne D'Arc is the closing track and it contains some interesting community singing, a good song, worthy closer of a good album.

When I said in the beginning this album is related to Ra I meant the commercial sound compared to the 70's. There are also significant differences though and the main is that Destination is much more energetic than the more laid back Ra. I like that personally about Destination but still it's as well a bit of dislike for me because none of the songs really stand out and almost every song has it flaws. But there are no fillers here I have to admit and so the final conclusion is fairly positive and three stars is well deserved in my opinion.

Report this review (#158702)
Posted Wednesday, January 16, 2008 | Review Permalink
kenethlevine
SPECIAL COLLABORATOR
Prog-Folk Team
2 stars One of the prog bands that made it to the mainstream in Germany was British veterans Barclay James Harvest, so it is not surprising that Frank Bornemann added BJH to his well of inspiration, chiefly in his vocal style for "Destination", the first Eloy album in 4 years. Specifically, he sounds like he is trying to parrot Les Holroyd's 1980s style, blended with a little Jon Anderson, which we had already heard on Ra. Unfortunately he simply doesn't have a voice like either of these gentleman, and the fact that the music recalls the seriously backsliding years of Yes and BJH does not help matters.

Through their peak period and a couple of times outside of that, Eloy tended to produce material with memorable melodies and arrangements. It was rare that songs would simply pass by my ears without my taking notice. They also understood the concept of variation in meter and accompaniment. This latter quality was already lacking in "Ra" but compensated for by Bornemann's melodic skill. Here we sink into an unintelligible morass for the most part, although the return of the flute on several tracks, including the opener "Call of the Wild", can only help the proceedings. The title tune starts off so promisingly and spacey before reverting to a Les Holroyd ballad formula. This is truly one of Bornemann's weakest albums from a vocal perspective and that is saying something. The finale "Jeanne D'Arc" is the first of several tributes to a historic icon with whom Mr Bornemann seems preoccupied these days, and is a plodding bloated production unworthy of this heroic figure.

Sometimes it's not the journey but the destination that counts, but sometimes it's neither, as in this lukewarm effort from Eloy. Rounded up to 2 stars out of respect.

Report this review (#160663)
Posted Sunday, February 3, 2008 | Review Permalink
progaardvark
COLLABORATOR
Crossover Team
2 stars After the disappointing Ra, it took the duo of Bornemann and Gerlach four more years before the next Eloy studio album, Destination, would be released. Was the wait worth it? For me, it clearly was not.

Unlike the progressive leanings on Ra (although highly electronic and programmed), Destination returned Eloy back to the AOR sound they leaned heavily toward as the 1980s progressed. One improvement was the shedding of the programmed drums as much of the tracks feature guest drummer Nico Baretta. Also, former Eloy bassist Klaus-Peter Matziol appears on two tracks: Silent Revolution and Racing Shadows.

Destination has some good songs on it, although it has more in common with Asia and Saga than the extraordinary music of the Eloy of old. Probably the best track is Jeanne d'Arc which features a beautiful performance from a classical choir. Silent Revolution and Call of the Wild are nice, but throughout the album I had to wonder what happened to Eloy. It sounds like Bornemann singing for another almost nearly unrelated band. That's the main impression I got.

Another forgettable two star performance. Mostly for Eloy fans and maybe the occasional AOR enthusiast.

Report this review (#172419)
Posted Wednesday, May 28, 2008 | Review Permalink
4 stars First of all what a fabulous cover! Probably my favorite progressive rock album cover (along with Marillion's Fugazi). When I first saw this I said to myself 'well I hope the music is worth of it'. With the first sounds of Call Of The Wild I realised the production of this album is excellent. I heard some early band's albums before and it wasn't something I liked. But this one. Hey. Why don't you like it? OK I can understand you prefer less commercial sound and more complex songs but believe me guitar solos on here are technically great. Take this one from Fire & Ice, wow it's like something from John Petrucci. The whole album sounds like something between Shadowland and Yes (90125 era). Just a bit more hard rockish. Vocals are like taken from Yes and I'm not sure I like it. Guitar work is really good and there's a lot of space filled with synthesizers. But it's still rock music. Songs are pretty long but also very melodic and not boring at all. Racing Shadows and Call Of The Wild could be hits but no one cared for Eloy in 1992. And good because it's music for chosen ones. Final song Jeanne d'Arc sums up this album with orchestral power. I got chills up and down my spine. I haven't heard most of Eloy albums but from those I heard Destination is the best. I recommend this piece of good produced well arranged and played with precision music. Listen without prejudice.
Report this review (#212725)
Posted Tuesday, April 28, 2009 | Review Permalink
4 stars Another acceptable Eloy album, though a bit better than the previous. It might not be as proggy in the concept of the album, but I think that the lyrics are much more well thought out, as well as the music overall sounding much better and the drums not sounding as electronic and stiff as we are so used to now. The worst of the 90s Eloy, but still it's a great album.

"Call of the Wind" has a very intresesting intro that draws you in with beautiful flute throughout the song. The intro is very atmospheric, as with most of this song. The lyrics are really good on this one too, odd and different, because Eloy dosen't talk too much about nature except for recently, but it's a good song. The vocals are nice, and so are the guitar solo's. The vocal harmonies are really nice on this song too. "Racing Shadows" reminds me a bit of Roll the Bones album by Rush because of the odd guitar chord sound, it sounds alot like what Alex Lifeson would do in that situation. It has an interesting beat, full and dynamic drums and odd sounding vocals. When Franky sings louder these days, he sounds a bit different, but his voice has graced through the ages. The bassline is really good here, you can faintly hear it, but it sounds pretty good. Lyrics are pretty good on this one. "Destination" is one of the longest and poppiest of the tracks, to me. The intro is slightly annoying with the electronic sounding drum beat (I thought that we were rid of that crap! I guess not....) but the lyrics are a standout to me for some reason, as with the femal vocals in the background at times. "Prisoner in Mind" is a good track, fully loaded with a bit of a power ballad structure for a song. It's got some nice distorted riffs, and some acoustic thrown into the mix. The drums are fairly nice on this track, not as electronic sounding as the last. The vocals remind me alot of Geddy Lee, just because of the emotion, now it sounds a bit like the Presto album, but it still has the German accent that makes me know that it's an Eloy song. "Silent Revelution" is the longest and has a fairly spacey intro to it. It has some nice keyboards that make it seem safe to enter the song. Harmonized is what I would call it. After that it turns into a fast heavy metal track, heavy use of double bass pedal on the drums and extreme distortion to the guitars, and the bass holds down the bottom end well. The lyrics go back to the first album a little bit, but a little spacier to me, and a bit better. The keyboards are really nice on this track. "Fire and Ice" lays down the beat with some nice drumming in the short intro, and a good rhythm section overall with a hypnotic bassline. The vocals are very nice, as the guitar sounding very nice, not as distorted or as heavy as the last few tracks. The lyrics are okay, but not great. "Eclipse of Mankind" is where it is at. It's got some good guitars and some nice drumming, this is a standout to me at least. The lyrics are definatly excellent, my favorite from the album because of the emotion that Frank really puts into it. "Jeanne D'arc" is a darker track, with some nice flute like keyboard effects as it sound here, but still a nice touch the dark guitar sounds that are coming to your ears. The lyrics are very nice and Frank sings with some nice passion in his voice.

A good album overall, not the best in the Eloy section of music, but not the worst definatly. I would have to give it a solid 4 stars, but close to a 5 star.

Report this review (#251997)
Posted Saturday, November 21, 2009 | Review Permalink
Easy Livin
SPECIAL COLLABORATOR
Honorary Collaborator / Retired Admin
3 stars The other side.. of Eloy

As with the previous album "Ra", for the recording of "Destination" Eloy were to all intents and purposes the duo of Frank Bornemann and Michael Gerlach. Here though, Gerlach vacates his roll as provider of drums for a genuine drummer in the name of Nico Baretta who plays throughout. Once again, a number of musicians are bought in on individual tracks, the most notable being the return of bassist Klaus-Peter Matziol on four of the eight tracks.

"Destination" offers a mix of the symphonic prog which many of us here seek, and the more prosaic AOR rock which increasingly featured on the band's albums around this time.

The opening "Call of the wild" is one of the tracks with prog leanings, an atmospheric flute intro leading to a pounding rhythm supporting a Moody Blues ("The other side of life") like rock number. "Eclipse of mankind" has some nice lead guitar supported by other effects. There is a Pink Floyd feel to the track at times, which is probably the best on the album.

Tracks such as "Fire and ice" fall into the AOR category. The melody here is pleasant and the arrangement pleasing, but the song could have been recorded by any of a wide range of bands. The problem as I see it with Eloy tracks of this type is that Bornemann's vocals do not fit particularly well. For me, he is far better when his singing is but a part of a major composition. "Prisoner in mind" is equally anonymous but lacks even the enjoyable melody of "Fire and ice". A definite low point of the album.

Four of the tracks run to over 7 minutes, "Racing shadows" having some good lead guitar but otherwise falling into the less appealing category. The title track is a plodding affair with some nice synth chorales and vocal harmonies. "Silent revolution" has a bit of Uriah Heep feel with pounded drums and sparkling keyboards. The children's chorus though may not please everyone by any means. "Jeanne de Arc" has a progressive arrangement, the story telling theme being presented quasi-operatically. Overall, it works reasonably well.

A bit of a patchy album then, with some good tracks and some decidedly dodgy ones. Overall, an enjoyable listen, but not a classic Eloy album for sure.

Report this review (#299007)
Posted Monday, September 13, 2010 | Review Permalink
SouthSideoftheSky
SPECIAL COLLABORATOR
Symphonic Team
3 stars Destination: the 90's

After the weak and strongly electronic Ra from 1988, Eloy entered the 90's with a more organic sounding album in Destination. The addition of genuine drums as opposed to electronic ones constitutes a noteworthy improvement over the Ra album, and also the presence of flutes and some acoustic guitars brings more life to the proceedings. The songs are more melodic and focused and the vocals are also not bad. Personally, I think that Destination was a return to form for Eloy and their best album for a decade at the time of its release. I'm often reminded of Barclay James Harvest while listening to this album both in terms of the tone of the vocals and in the melodies. The structure of the band at this point in time was indeed very similar to that of post-Woolly Wolstenholme Barclay James Harvest with only Frank Bornemann and Michael Gerlach constituting the core of Eloy with a larger set of session musicians filling out the band. There are, however, also moments that approach Metal territory, making for a reasonably varied album.

Most of the songs on Destination are around seven minutes in length and while some of them could probably have been developed a bit better, others deserve to be that long. The opening number Call Of The Wild is one of the best songs of the album with its tasteful, mystical keyboards and Jethro Tull-like flute runs. Racing Shadows is another rather good song. Bornemann sounds a bit like Jon Anderson in the chorus! The title track is a rather rambling tune that is too long for its own good. It does however contain a very nice flute solo. The hard rocking Prisoner In Mind is hardly a very inspired tune either and at this point you start to wonder whether the rest of the album is going to be a rather sad affair. But it gets back on track with Silent Revolution that almost approaches Metal territory. This song also features some great guitar breaks and some unexpected twists and turns like a children's choir at the end.

Fire And Ice is a more melodic tune but it features a pretty good guitar solo. It is, however, the two last tracks that truly bring the album back on track. Eclipse Of Mankind is another one of those Barclay James Harvest-like songs, again with a good guitar sound. Jeanne D'Arc closes the album and is also a quite nice song and probably the most ambitious track of the whole album. It alternates between quieter acoustic passages, on the one hand, and bombastic, symphonic passages, on the other.

Destination is hardly Eloy's best album, but it is also far from the worst. There are a couple of rather half-baked tunes, but also some quite solid moments. Nice cover art it has too.

Report this review (#302293)
Posted Tuesday, October 5, 2010 | Review Permalink
AtomicCrimsonRush
SPECIAL COLLABORATOR
Symphonic Team
3 stars Eloy's "Destination" is another of the 90s album that saw the band completely change from their prog symphonic roots to embrace the new heavier 90s sound. It is not too bad considering the change over in sound, and in fact it has some excellent songs such as the first three on the album, 'Call Of The Wild', 'Racing Shadows' and 'Destination'. The sound is definitely 90s of course with clean production, reverberating and distorted guitars and overlayed keyboards.

'Silent Revolution' has a nice drone giving it a dark edge, and the keyboards are haunting, sounding like pan pipes; 'Picnic at Hangnig Rock' springs to mind. Then it blazes along with fiery guitar riffs, a heavier sound from Bornemann. His vocals are terrific on such songs where he powers out the vocals with passion. This is definitely one of their heavier songs, and produced when metal was hyper popular. The lead break is incredible followed by chimming keys; a towering performance. Then it ends with a children's choir "we are the future race"; such an epic structure on this song based on saving the planet and shaming humankind for destroying the world with pollution and steel structures.

Other songs include the sparkling guitars on 'Fire And Ice', with a grand melody and musicianship, 'Eclipse Of Mankind', that features a steady pace, metal drum style and endearing vocals, and finally operatic bombastic music on 'Jeanne d'Arc'. It is an enjoyable album and worthwhile, though not purely progressive, during this transformation period of the band.

Report this review (#905952)
Posted Monday, February 4, 2013 | Review Permalink
octopus-4
SPECIAL COLLABORATOR
RIO/Avant/Zeuhl,Neo & Post/Math Teams
2 stars There still some of the good Eloy in this album, but I really don't understand why this band release its first album of the 90s trying to sound like the YES of the 80s.

The innatural falsetto of an unrecognisable Bornemann who sings over music which seems to be arranged by Trevor Rabin just after Big Generator, the use of electronic drums and what sounds like a fairlight on the title track....I have to say that this electro-pop songis really not bad. It reminds me to something else already heard, a mixture of YES and Peter Gabriel of the 80s which could have been good if released before the prog rebirth of the 90s. In 1992 it's already dated.

Eloy have always been a bit derivative, since the Uriah Heep influence of the first two albums, to the Floydian period of the mid 70s with a hint of Jethro Tull, and Alan Parsons Project, but this is too much. And too pop.

The only track which doesn't sound like YES, Prisoner In Mind, sounds like Wishbone Ash...

Just one highlight: "Jeanne D'Arc" is a good track and sounds less derivative than the rest of the album. Bornemann, whose strong German accent seems to have been mitigated during the years sings on his normal pitch. The song has something of West Coast even with the operatic choir, but is in line with the "good old things". It's a song that could have apeared on one of the eraly albums, and considering the lack of originality of the rest of the album it might have been composed years before.

Don't get me wrong, this album is not so bad. You can put it into your car and listen to it while driving. Of course, if you don't pay attention you can think to be listening to something from the Rabin period.

Not a disturbing album, but there better things to buy, around.

Report this review (#943032)
Posted Friday, April 12, 2013 | Review Permalink
Modrigue
PROG REVIEWER
2 stars One of ELOY's best cover art for... their worst album. What a deception!

For sure, in 1992, during the grunge and rap explosion, space-rock was not very popular. However, why does the music sounds like it was recorded in the 80's? ELOY recovers its old habit of being a few years late. And... what happened to Frank Bornemann's voice? This record showed great promises though: The participation of Klaus-Peter Matziol (the bassist of the band's "golden era") on some tracks, a real drummer, Nico Baretta, and the usage of the flute, a new instrument in ELOY's universe. All these interesting elements do not prevent the lack of inspiration of the compositions. So, is "Destination" a total fiasco?

Weakened by its awful percussions and vocals, the opener "Call Of The Wild" can be described as flavorless ELOY. The incursion of the flute is quite useless. Not much to say about "Racing Shadows" either, it's a rather flat song. Same goes for the title track, sounding very late 80's and boring.

Now comes the (only) interesting part. "Prisoner In Mind" is a surprisingly 80's heavy rock song. While not transcendent, the music itself is quite refreshing and enjoyable. The space metal track "Silent Revolution" is even more ferocious. Rarely has ELOY been this agressive. Wow! Best moment of the album, it features musical changes and a nice finale with a choir. Our heavy metal stop is now over.

Back to the oceans of mediocrity. "Fire And Ice" is average but not very original, while "Eclipse Of Mankind" is rather transparent and dull. The most progressive track of the record, "Jeanne d'Arc", is one of the band's worst song. Although trying a different style, the melody is insipid and the "operatical" passages are barely listenable.

Destination: the middle of the album, as it is only part showing new approaches. The rest is just forgettable in the german band's discography, these tracks won't be played often at concerts. It would have been interesting though to hear their space-rock if they had turned more "metallic". Don't worry, ELOY will recover (a piece of) its lost inspiration in the next opus...

Report this review (#1547503)
Posted Sunday, April 3, 2016 | Review Permalink

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