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Various Artists (Tributes) Encores, Legends & Paradox - A Tribute To The Music Of ELP album cover
3.63 | 40 ratings | 8 reviews | 15% 5 stars

Excellent addition to any
prog rock music collection

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Studio Album, released in 1999

Songs / Tracks Listing

1. Karn Evil 9 1st. Impression (8:51)
2. Bitches Crystal (4:41)
3. Toccata [Adaptation of Alberto Ginastera's 1st Piano Concerto, 4th Movement] (8:07)
4. Knife Edge [adapted from Janacek's Sinfonietta] (5:20)
5. A Time and a Place (6:14)
6. Hoedown [taken from Rodeo by Aaron Copeland] (3:46)
7. The Sheriff (5:57)
8. The Endless Enigma (10:18)
9. The Barbarian [adapted from Bela Bartok's Allego Barbaro] (4:44)
10. Tarkus (6:45)

Total Time: 64:43

Line-up / Musicians

- Robert Berry / bass (1, 4, 6, 9, 10), guitar (1, 9), vocals (1), arrangements & production
- Trent Gardner / keyboards (2, 3, 5, 7, 8), vocals (7, 8), arrangements & production
- Wayne Gardner / bass (2, 3, 5, 7, 8), acoustic guitar (7)
- Simon Phillips / drums (1, 4, 6, 9, 10)
- Marc Bonilla / guitar (4, 6, 10)
- Jordan Rudess / keyboards (1, 6)
- Pat Mastelotto / percussion (2, 3)
- John Wetton / vocals (2, 7)
- Igor Khoroshev / piano (2), keyboards (9)
- Peter Banks / guitars (3, 7)
- James LaBrie / vocals (5, 10)
- Mike Portnoy / drums (7, 8)
- Mark Wood / violin (1)
- Matt Guillory / synthesizer (3)
- Glenn Hughes / vocals (4)
- Erik Norlander / keyboards (4)
- Doane Perry / drums (5)
- Martin Barre / guitars (5)
- John Novello / organ (5)
- Jerry Goodman / violin (6)
- Mark Robertson / Hammond (7)
- Geoff Downes / synthesizer (8 lead solo in outro)
- Derek Sherinian / keyboards (10)

Releases information

Artwork: Dave McKean @ Hourglass

CD Magna Carta ‎- MAX-9026-2 (1999, Europe)

Thanks to ivan_2068 for the addition
and to Quinino for the last updates
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VARIOUS ARTISTS (TRIBUTES) Encores, Legends & Paradox - A Tribute To The Music Of ELP ratings distribution

(40 ratings)
Essential: a masterpiece of progressive rock music(15%)
Excellent addition to any prog rock music collection(52%)
Good, but non-essential (22%)
Collectors/fans only (10%)
Poor. Only for completionists (0%)

VARIOUS ARTISTS (TRIBUTES) Encores, Legends & Paradox - A Tribute To The Music Of ELP reviews

Showing all collaborators reviews and last reviews preview | Show all reviews/ratings

Collaborators/Experts Reviews

Review by Ivan_Melgar_M
SPECIAL COLLABORATOR Symphonic Prog Specialist
4 stars I don't have a definitive opinion about the so-called tribute albums because most of them are only an excuse for old or unknown artists to get some bucks without having to create music.

Some of the tribute albums are only a copy of the original songs without adding any contribution from the copyist (can't say artist), and others are so changed that seem a failed experiment, but there are a few in which the new musicians add interesting things to the already good music without changing the spirit of the song and because of this they release an album worth to buy.

Encores, Legends & Paradox is one of the last kind of Tribute albums, very good interpretations of ELP classics with attractive changes and a band full of excellent artists that really make an effort to release a different version of the original song respecting the author's creation.

Lets be honest, if it was only for the chance to listen 23 great musicians that include members from Yes, King Crimson, Dream Theater, Mahavishnu Orchestra, UK, etc, would be enough reason to buy the album, because guys like Jordan Rudess, John Wetton, Robert Berry, Igor Koroshev, Peter Banks, Trent Gardner and Erik Norlander among others surely have a lot of talent to provide, but it's not the only reason to take seriously this release because the quality of the music is outstanding and the performances are excellent in most cases, but lets check some songs:

Karn Evil 9 (Robert Berry/Simon Phillips/Jordan Rudess/Mark Wood): At a first impression may sound very similar to the original version, but the arrangement is totally different, even though is clearly progressive, the music has a classical Rock orientation. Emerson's keyboard performances are mostly inspired in the firm sound of early modern composers (mainly Russians), but in this album Jordan Rudess seems more baroque, almost like Rick Wakeman does in his solo albums. The mixture is very good.

Toccata (Trent Gardner/Pat Mastelotto/Peter Banks/Matt Guillory/Wayne Gardner): This song is absolutely different to the original version, probably faster (if this is possible) with a touch of Jazz Fusion. Mastelotto's drums are not as strong as Palmer's but perfect to the Fusion atmosphere.

Knife Edge (Robert Berry/ Simon Phillips/ Marc Bonilla/ Erik Norlander/ Glenn Hughes): The only song with Glenn Hughes as a vocalist, and of course has a Hard Rock orientation. Hughes voice is not as powerful as Lake's (at least in this track), and IMO is not the correct election for this song, Listen to the short guitar solo by Marc Bonilla, it's totally and absolutely delightful.

Hoedown (Robert Berry / Simon Phillips / Jerry Goodman / Jordan Rudess / Marc Bonilla): Great version, with a mixture of folk and Jazz, Jerry Goodman's violin plays a basic role in the song specially in the first part, when bass and guitar are added, the song gets that classic fusion sound, somehow similar to Mahavishnu.

The Sheriff (Trent Gardner / Mike Portnoy / John Wetton / Peter Banks / Mark Robertson / Wayne Gardner): Except for a few chords in the beginning of the song and Wetton's voice (very similar to Lake's), The Sheriff sounds as a different song, probably one of the weakest in the album because of Wetton's poppy singing in some parts of the track, as if he tried to sound like Greg Lake singing Invisible Touch instead of an ELP song, weak but still not totally bad.

The Barbarian (Robert Berry / Simon Phillips / Igor Koroshev): In this song, Igor Koroshev's contribution is very important, even though he respects the cold and firm style of Keith Emerson, he adds extra speed, some baroque chords and a little bit of life to the dark mood of the original version.

There's not much more to talk about it because Encores Legends & Paradox is a tribute and we know enough all the tracks, but I believe the work is well down and sometimes is nice to have a different perspective of the songs we know so well.

4 solid stars for an album that combines great artists, good taste and excellent performance, a rare tribute that's worth to buy.

Review by Raff
SPECIAL COLLABORATOR Honorary Collaborator
4 stars This was the first tribute album I bought, as I was somewhat suspicious of them. However, when I saw this one in a London shop I was intrigued - not only by the music but also by the list of musicians appearing on the CD cover - and I've never regretted my purchase. As a matter of fact, I listen to this record quite often, alongside (obviously!) 'the real thing'. Unlike many other tribute albums, which dumbly imitate the originals without even trying to breathe any new life in them, "Encores, Legends and Paradox" (a brilliant title indeed!) offers some genuinely exciting reworkings of classic ELP tracks.

One of the album's masterminds is Robert Berry, who actually worked with Emerson and Palmer in the short-lived Three project, so he knows a thing or two about the originals and the way they were conceived. Berry plays on most of the tracks and sings on the opening "Karn Evil 9": his voice is pleasant but somehow nondescript, and certainly no match for Lake's. The other vocalists are Magellan's Trent Gardner, to which more or less the same applies; Dream Theater's James La Brie, who performs, of all tracks, on the immortal "Tarkus", one of Lake's strong points; Lake's clone himself, John Wetton, who sort of struggles with the difficult "Bitches Crystal"; and, last but not least, Glenn Hughes, one of the very few vocalists who can match Lake's talents, and whose performance on "Knife Edge" gave me goose pimples the first time I heard it. Although Hughes's voice is usually higher-pitched than Lake's, here he adopts a baritone range and the results are nothing short of astounding!

Instrumentally speaking, the album gathers some of the best musicians in the world of progressive and hard rock, including legendary session drummer Simon Phillips (listen to his brilliant work on "Karn Evil 9"), Jethro Tull's Martin Barre and Doane Perry and three outstanding keyboardists such as Igor Khoroshev, Derek Sherinian and Jordan Rudess. Some of the tracks turn out to be rather different from the originals, as is the case of "Toccata" and "A Time and A Place", which is much faster, with swirling keyboards and LaBrie's wailing vocals.

A very strong record overall, and a recommended purchase for all prog fans (unless they happen to really hate ELP with a passion!).

Review by Evolver
SPECIAL COLLABORATOR Crossover & JR/F/Canterbury Teams
4 stars Of the many tribute CDs I own, this is possibly the best.

Why? The musician's here do not, for the most part, try to recreate the original songs, but interpret them into their own styles. This despite the fact that at least three of the musicians here (Robert Berry with 3, Marc Bonilla with The Keith Emerson Band and Boys Club, and Glenn Hughes with Boys Club) have toured with Emerson, and know his arrangements well. Except for Knife Edge which only has a few rhythmic changes, and Tarkus which has been edited down to a much too short version, the songs all sound copletely reworked.

The standout tracks to me are Toccata, which seems to retain only a few melodic bits from the original while retaining and perhaps expanding it's wild feel, and A Time And A Place with Martin Barre and Doane Perry from Jethro Tull and James LaBrie from Dream Theater helping to make this a heavy prog masterpiece.

Criticisms, well, Robert Berry's changed lyrics for Karn Evil 9 sound awkward, and the mixed up lyrics to The Sheriff make no sense. And poor Tarkus.

Review by SouthSideoftheSky
3 stars Toccata

There is sometimes talk of a "big five" or "big six" of progressive Rock - referring, not necessarily to the best five or six bands, but at least to those that are most well-known among the wider public - even though there is probably no consensus on exactly which bands should be included. If you would ask Magna Carta records they would probably tell you that the big six consists of Yes, Genesis, Pink Floyd, Jethro Tull, Rush, and Emerson Lake & Palmer. At least it is precisely these six bands that this label has released tribute albums to.

Encores Legends & Paradox is a tribute to Emerson Lake & Palmer and is one of the better tribute albums in the series by Magna Carta. As could be expected, keyboard players play an important role here given the nature of the music of Emerson Lake & Palmer. Geoff Downes, Erik Norlander, Derek Sherinian, Jordan Rudess, and Igor Khoroshev are some of the keyboarders who pay their respects to Keith Emerson on this tribute. Emerson's influence on these players is undeniable.

Among the vocalists we find John Wetton whose career is intertwined with that of Greg Lake in interesting ways. Both Lake and Wetton were of course part of King Crimson at different times, and Lake at one point (albeit very briefly) stood in for Wetton in Asia (as documented on the live video Asia In Asia). Other singers involved in this tribute are Glenn Hughes, Robert Berry, and Dream Theater's James LaBrie. Berry, as ELP fans will know, was Lake's replacement in the band in the late 80's when they adopted the moniker of "3" for one album; To the Power of Three, released in 1988.

On the drum stool we find, among others, Mike Portnoy from Dream Theater and Doanne Perry from Jethro Tull. Interestingly, guitars are more prominent on these cover versions than they ever were on the originals. Original Yes guitarist Peter Banks contributes to a couple of tracks and long-time Jethro Tull guitarist Martin Barre contributes to one. Marc Bonilla is another guitar player involved and he would later go on to collaborate with Keith Emerson himself. They did a good studio album in 2008 under the name "Keith Emerson Band featuring Marc Bonilla", and an excellent live album and video followed in 2011. (See the entry for Keith Emerson for these releases.) I have often thought that ELP would have benefited from the addition of a permanent guitar player and my view is confirmed by versions including more guitars. (Also Greg Lake have performed ELP material live with guitar players to great effect; see, for example, the very good DVD Greg Lake Live.)

All of the ten cuts cover tunes from ELP's first four albums, released between 1970 and 1973. As most fans would agree, this was the best period of the band, and the song selection reflects the band's greatness. No tribute album can ever be essential and Encores Legends & Paradox is no exception. But it is a worthy celebration of a great band and one of the better entries in Magna Carta's series of tributes released between 1995 and 1999.

Latest members reviews

3 stars If there was some form of progressive CD release recognition like Prog-Grammy or the "Gilded ELP Award" gala event, this tribute album would surely have easily earned "Best of . . .", "Best Tribute", "Most Artist . . .", and "People's Choice . . .", etc., etc. It is warming to this old progger ... (read more)

Report this review (#2582325) | Posted by JazzFusionGuy | Friday, July 30, 2021 | Review Permanlink

2 stars Paradox is right. Why have a covers tribute album that covers covers? Did't ELP write enough of their own music to qualify? I think so. Why couldn't they do some of the accoustic songs - From the Beginning, Still...You Turn Me On, etc.? Why not choose something else like Pirates, Brain Salad ... (read more)

Report this review (#906132) | Posted by wehpanzer | Monday, February 4, 2013 | Review Permanlink

4 stars I totally agree with the other prog reviewers that thie ELP TRIBUTE is,maybee,the best of all the great MAGNA CARTA serie of this type of albums!It's great to see how sounds the ELP music with modern technology and especially the keyboards sound is astonishing!We realise once again that the b ... (read more)

Report this review (#259762) | Posted by Ovidiu | Thursday, January 7, 2010 | Review Permanlink

4 stars This is basically a heavy interpretation of ELP's music.The likes of Mike Portnoy and Marc Bonilla 'attack' the music with great relish.In fact read the list of musicians who play on this ..its mighty impressive! I will give credit in that they have changed the music enough to make it a reason ... (read more)

Report this review (#36077) | Posted by | Saturday, June 11, 2005 | Review Permanlink

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