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ALAN PARSONS BAND

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Alan Parsons Band biography
Alan PARSONS began his career at Abbey Road doing tape duplication. Over the years he would climb the ranks from assistant engineer, to engineer and later to producer. Along the way he worked on albums like "Abbey Road" by The BEATLES, and "Dark Side of the Moon" by PINK FLOYD. In 1976, he started his own group, the very famous Alan PARSONS PROJECT. When Eric WOOLFSON chose to leave The Alan PARSONS PROJECT to pursue a career in musical theatre, Alan didn't feel comfortable continuing to use the Project moniker. Albums are credited to Alan PARSONS, but when they tour the marquee flashes The Alan PARSONS Band.

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ALAN PARSONS BAND discography


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ALAN PARSONS BAND top albums (CD, LP, MC, SACD, DVD-A, Digital Media Download)

3.41 | 45 ratings
Try Anything Once
1993
2.91 | 37 ratings
On Air
1996
2.26 | 38 ratings
Time Machine
1999
2.57 | 64 ratings
A Valid Path
2004

ALAN PARSONS BAND Live Albums (CD, LP, MC, SACD, DVD-A, Digital Media Download)

3.07 | 19 ratings
The Very Best Of Live
1994
4.25 | 12 ratings
Eye 2 Eye
2010

ALAN PARSONS BAND Videos (DVD, Blu-ray, VHS etc)

4.57 | 7 ratings
Alan Parsons live in Madrid
2005
4.83 | 6 ratings
Eye 2 Eye
2010

ALAN PARSONS BAND Boxset & Compilations (CD, LP, MC, SACD, DVD-A, Digital Media Download)

ALAN PARSONS BAND Official Singles, EPs, Fan Club & Promo (CD, EP/LP, MC, Digital Media Download)

2.13 | 4 ratings
All Our Yesterdays
2010
2.33 | 2 ratings
Fragile
2013

ALAN PARSONS BAND Reviews


Showing last 10 reviews only
 Fragile by PARSONS BAND, ALAN album cover Singles/EPs/Fan Club/Promo, 2013
2.33 | 2 ratings

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Fragile
Alan Parsons Band Prog Related

Review by davemuttillo

5 stars Fragile, with its accompanying video, is an excellent new production from the Alan Parsons Band, their first new music in four years. While releases have been slow in coming, the end products have all been first class. Fragile is a beautifully layer ballad in the Alan Parsons Project/Alan Parsons Band tradition blending the long running elements of Parsons traditional sound with influences from the past. One easily picks up the Pink Floyd elements in the vocal lines while the keyboard elements and guitar work are squarely centered in the Parsons tradition. Fragile seamlessly blends these two elements together to create another must have Parsons classic. The Cd version comes with two versions of Fragile, as well as, a live version of Luciferama. Definitely worth the small purchase price.

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 Fragile by PARSONS BAND, ALAN album cover Singles/EPs/Fan Club/Promo, 2013
2.33 | 2 ratings

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Fragile
Alan Parsons Band Prog Related

Review by SouthSideoftheSky
Special Collaborator Symphonic Team

1 stars Let's make a song that sounds like Pink Floyd's greatest hits!

After the split with Eric Woolfson in the early 90's (or the late 80's depending on whether you count Freudiana as an Alan Parsons Project album) Alan Parsons continued under his own name. Between 1993 and 2004 Parsons released four studio albums, but during the last ten years he has released only a couple of live albums and a couple of singles. In 2010 came the single All Our Yesterdays and in 2013 the present one called Fragile.

The digital version of Fragile that I have (available on Spotify and iTunes among other places) features only a single track (hence, no B-side). There is however a CD version that holds two further tracks, one of which is a radio edit of the same song and the other a live version of Luciferama taken from the upcoming live album LiveSpan.

Clocking in at under four minutes, Fragile is a rather straightforward, acoustically driven song. The overarching goal of Fragile seems to be to sound as much as Pink Floyd as possible. Think Comfortably Numb or Wish You Were Here (the song). Fragile is not a bad song as such, but it comes across as a somewhat blatant attempt to mimic these of Pink Floyd's most popular and accessible tunes (of course, Parsons is already strongly associated with that band in virtue of being the sound engineer on Dark Side Of The Moon) and thus maximizing the hit potential. It is too safe a bet really.

If there had been an original B-side on this single, perhaps an instrumental like there was on the All Our Yesterdays single, and not only some radio edit or familiar live track, then I would probably give two stars. But as it stands, this lone track is not interesting enough to justify investigation. Only completionists will need to get hold of this single.

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 All Our Yesterdays by PARSONS BAND, ALAN album cover Singles/EPs/Fan Club/Promo, 2010
2.13 | 4 ratings

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All Our Yesterdays
Alan Parsons Band Prog Related

Review by SouthSideoftheSky
Special Collaborator Symphonic Team

2 stars Project nostalgia

The Alan Parsons Project proper seized to be in the early 90's (or rather already in the late 80's as Freudiana is not strictly speaking by "the project"). Alan Parsons then continued under his own name, playing live as well as releasing further studio albums in 1993, 1996, 1999, and the latest (full-length) release to date in 2004. This is now ten years ago already and since then it has been quiet in terms of new material. This single from 2010 being an exception, containing two new tracks.

The A-side is called All Our Yesterdays and is a song that would not have been out of place on one of the project's albums. It is a catchy tune with hit potential that will appeal to fans of Parsons and the project, but it will not impress anyone expecting something adventurous or progressive. As the title implies, it is a backward-looking exercise, celebrating the golden days of the 70's and 80's.

The B-side Alpha Centauri is an instrumental that seems to be based on the blueprint of Sirius from 1982's Eye In The Sky. While it hardly breaks any new ground, it is nice to hear that he's till got it. I like it more than the A-side really, but together the two tracks captures very well two different sides of the project. Needless to say it is impeccably produced.

Even without Eric Woolfson, Parsons has here created something that is very much in the style of The Alan Parsons Project and fans of that band will not be disappointed. There is no sign that this single foreshadows a new album though.

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 A Valid Path by PARSONS BAND, ALAN album cover Studio Album, 2004
2.57 | 64 ratings

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A Valid Path
Alan Parsons Band Prog Related

Review by Gatot
Special Collaborator Honorary Collaborator

3 stars I am not a great fan of Alan Parsons even though I like his music and I made a set of collection of his album - studio and live. One thing I always find in common about Alan Parsons albums is that there must be something that I like - especially the soundscape. Well, he is basically an engineer-turned-musician. For sure he is an excellent engineer with a significant contribution to The Beatles' seminal album 'Abbey Road' as well as legendary prog album Pink Floyd's 'Dark Side of The Moon'. His music is basically leveraging his talent and expertise in sound engineering which I think he is really smart in doing it. He might not be a great musician but he teamed up with musicians that could help him make a good music. I salute him on his approach. At the end, I enjoy his music especially under the Alan Parsons Project. The Alan Parsons BAND is more on focusing his own way in doing music, especially this 'A Valid Path' album where the music is basically is his own.

The album opener 'Return To Tunguska' (8:48) is really an excellent instrumental and it's positioned correctly as opener. The music is really packed with digital and spacey / ambient nuances with the touch of Gilmour guitar work. It's a great experience playing this track outloud using a well decent stereo set where you can enjoy all subtleties in the music. I do enjoy and pay high respect his sound engineering expertise as well as musicianship. I can say two thumbs up for this track and I alway replay it especially after having known that all tracks with vocals are not good and boring. You can sense it right away after the excellent opening the music suddenly drop to a lackluster 'More Lost Without You' (3:20). I don''t think people even with background of pop music would like this track. 'Mammagamma 04' (5:05) is another instrumental which sounds quite OK even though it's not as good as opening one - too much dancing or disco rhythm performed her - something like House Music, I think. 'Tijuania' (5:10) is a better instrumental than track no. 3. 'L'arc En Ciel' (5:22) is another good instrumental especially I like the bass recording and guitar solo. Yes there are dancing rhythm but it's quite OK overall. 'The Raven (from A Recurring Dream Within A Dream)' (4:06) is something like retroactive of previous work and it sounds boring. 'You Can Run' (3:52) is a pure R&B music. The album conclude with another instrumental with dancing rhythm 'Chomolungma' (7:07)

It's not quite strong musically as an album but it's also not bad. Keep on proggin' ...!

Peace on earth and mercy mild - GW

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 A Valid Path by PARSONS BAND, ALAN album cover Studio Album, 2004
2.57 | 64 ratings

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A Valid Path
Alan Parsons Band Prog Related

Review by Stellar Jetman

2 stars Track-by-track analysis:

"Return to Tunguska"

Odd, Middle Eastern-tinged techno that opens up with a female voice somewhere between Plavalaguna's wailing from The Fifth Element and Neo's scream from the "liquid mirror" scene in The Matrix. Has a rather neat sound and atmosphere, but, given that it's techno, there's little in the way of substance underneath the endless layered synthesizers, drums, and sound effects. An impressive technical exercise, and one of the more interesting techno songs that I've heard, but hardly something that I'd associate with Alan Parsons.

Apparently, David Gilmour contributed the electric guitar accompaniment in this track. It's good, but it isn't nearly as interesting or structurally important as it needs to be. They could have had anybody do it, and it wouldn't have made much difference.

"More Lost Without You"

Cheap pop drivel. Coming from the man behind "Eye in the Sky" - possibly the best pop song ever recorded - this is just embarrassing. What was Parsons thinking here? He was far past his early-'80s glory days; there was no way that this was going to make it to Top 40 radio. And, if it somehow had, it wouldn't have measured up to even that mediocre standard of music.

"Mammagamma 2004"

One of two remixes on this album, this version of "Mammagamma" (the original being a track on Eye in the Sky) is almost completely unrecognizable as such - which is odd, considering that the original was already a techno song. The original melody is all but buried under excessive synthesized harmonies and drums, with a strange, clucking sound playing over the whole thing. If I hadn't been actively looking for the tune, I wouldn't have noticed the "Mammagamma" connection at all.

"We Play the Game"

More techno-pop, but with the slightest hint of The Turn of a Friendly Card to give it some character. Again, though, that shouldn't be the case if it's supposed to be by the guy who made that album!

"Tijuaniac"

Techno, but boring. I don't know what it is about it, but this song puts me to sleep.

"L'Arc en Ciel"

This instrumental tries to create the atmosphere of a rainbow after a storm (hence the title's French meaning), but that doesn't go far beyond sampled drops at the beginning. I like the way that the drops start to fall in a sort of rhythm before they're replaced by the song proper, but it still doesn't compare to the genuine imagery of "The Fall of the House of Usher: Arrival" (from Tales of Mystery and Imagination), another song that used the idea of calm after (or, given the context, during) a storm, and one which pulled it off far more effectively. (As nice as those raindrops sound, they're far closer to simple drops than they are to rain.) A guitar pops up after a while, but it isn't enough to really distinguish it from the thousands of other techno songs out there.

"A Recurring Dream Within a Dream"

Speaking of Tales of Mystery and Imagination (an album that I would very much prefer to be thinking about), here's the other remix. Opening up with a dishearteningly promising narration, it combines "A Dream Within a Dream" and "The Raven" into one techno-flavored track with none of the vibrant atmosphere of either original song, completely lacking the lushness of the first and the energy of the second. It ends up being little more than a weird, anachronistic mash-up of 21st-century synthesizers and '70s tunes, and it doesn't work at all. What was the point of this song? Out of everything in The Alan Parsons Project's extensive musical output, they picked the one album that would benefit least from a techno remix. Why do something if there's no way to do it right?

"You Can Run"

Pop. Yawn.

"Chomolungma"

Yet more techno, and somewhat in the vein of "Return to Tunguska". Again, well-engineered (the finale will push the limits of most sound systems' clarity), but musically uninteresting, even with the weird, Asian chants and sound effects that suffuse it. The tune, such as it is, is a pair of arpeggios that sporadically surface from the mass of harmonies and effects, and it's little more than a device to keep the song from growing stale as it builds for seven straight minutes. There's a weird little monologue by John Cleese at the end, followed by scattered dog barks; both feel tremendously out-of-place at the end of a song with such ostensibly mystic aspirations, and they would be far more appropriate on, say, a Pink Floyd album. The song is nice enough as far as techno goes, but it doesn't have an ounce of the traditional Alan Parsons character.

Overall assessment:

Ugh. Parsons brought in several techno groups on this outing to help update and reinvent his signature sound, but he went too far - I can't hear anything but techno on this album! I like techno as much as the next guy, but it isn't exactly one of music's better genres - if Parsons wanted to go electronic this time around, he should have done something more in line with Vangelis or Jean-Michel Jarre (shades of which do shine through on the opening track); he certainly had the talent for it, and it would have been much more worthwhile than what we ended up with.

A Valid Path is a terrible Alan Parsons album, and the pop numbers and Tales of Mystery and Imagination remix spoil what could have at least been a decent techno album. What's left is a pitiful collection of songs with exactly three bright spots, and those only in comparison to the garbage that they neighbor. Two stars, because I'm feeling exceptionally generous.

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 Try Anything Once by PARSONS BAND, ALAN album cover Studio Album, 1993
3.41 | 45 ratings

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Try Anything Once
Alan Parsons Band Prog Related

Review by Evolver
Special Collaborator Crossover & JazzRock/Fusion Teams

3 stars "Try Anything Once" is the first Alan Parsons album without singer Eric Woolfson. And he dropped the word "Project" from the band's name. But the sound is still very much the same, a blend of art rock and AOR. Unfortunately, the AOR wins out hands down.

There are a few good songs. The Three Of Me and Wine From The Water both are reminiscent of classic 10CC (the latter helped by having 10CC's Eric Stewart on vocals). Breakaway does a fair job of capturing the feel of I Wouldn't Want To Be Like You from "I Robot". And Jigue is a fair instumental folk rock piece.

But the rest is well produced, but fairly bland adult contemporary rock, suitable for those stations Teri Garr used to do commercials for.

2.5 stars. I'll be generous and round it up.

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 A Valid Path by PARSONS BAND, ALAN album cover Studio Album, 2004
2.57 | 64 ratings

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A Valid Path
Alan Parsons Band Prog Related

Review by snobb
Special Collaborator Honorary Collaborator

3 stars Last to time Alan Parsons album was a pleasant surprise for me. From his very early works I liked his catching melodies, great sound and pleasant music with touch of progressive sound. Somewhere in eighties I just missed him from my memory.

After many years, somewhere in 2005 or 2006 I saw him live in Trieste, big concert in Piazza Unita, central town's square. To be honest, concert itself wasn't as good as possible, but I heard some old songs and my memory was refreshed. So I just purchase his newest possible album at first possibility.

Yes, it's different music from his older works, and it's for good. Not too many musicians from old generation could change something in their music. Alan Parsons just does it.

Very melodic album of electronic sound. Old pop-rock and art rock is successfully mixed with modern electronic sound, including some techno rhythms and samplers. But in difference from many modern electronic musicians, I can feel rock roots there. Electronic sounds are used very economically, no overproduction at all. Plenty of vintage rock nuances are presented under the electronic skin. David Gilmour added his guitar on great universal.

This album isn't masterpiece ( no Parsons' album was). But it is good example of naturally refreshed music by professional musician. His music always was a pleasant soft- rock, or pop-rock, with some touches of art-rock. Same is now. But on the modern level.

Don't think this album will be interesting for prog purists ( but for me it's difficult to think about Alan Parsons as pure prog artist). But everyone who liked his melodic music in 70- s or 80-s,will be pleased with this work as well (just open your ears!).

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 A Valid Path by PARSONS BAND, ALAN album cover Studio Album, 2004
2.57 | 64 ratings

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A Valid Path
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Review by SouthSideoftheSky
Special Collaborator Symphonic Team

1 stars Recycle, remix, release

This is the last Alan Parsons album to date, and given that we would get more of what is featured here, let's hope that it remains his last ever! This is, in my view anyway, possibly his worst ever release. I'm not even sure I would consider it a proper original studio album as it contains some Techno/dance remixes of some earlier Alan Parsons Project songs in addition to original material.

As usual Alan Parsons doesn't rely entirely on his own talents but hire a cast of often famous people to help him out. One of the world's most famous guitarists in David Gilmour is here and one of the world's most famous comedians in John Cleese! However, these great people don't exactly save this album from almost complete disaster.

The opening number Return To Tunguska is the best of the lot, it is something of a Trance track with nice electric guitar lines. Quite interesting! However, it is downhill from here. More Lost Without You is a typical Alan Parsons Project Pop song that feels quite out of place after Return To Tunguska. Or to be honest, it is Return To Tunguska that is really out of place on an Alan Parsons album. We then have some dance remixes of popular songs from Tales Of Mystery And Imagination and Eye In The Sky. These are completely unnecessary and bring nothing of value compared to the originals.

I am not going to comment on all the songs, but the closing number sounds a bit like Kraftwerk! Need I say more? At the very end of the album we hear John Cleese complaining about that the music just "goes on and on and on". A more accurate description is hard to find! At least it proves that Parsons has a sense of humour and doesn't take his music too seriously. Or maybe he should?!

Not recommended unless you want to complete your Alan Parsons collection

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 On Air by PARSONS BAND, ALAN album cover Studio Album, 1996
2.91 | 37 ratings

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On Air
Alan Parsons Band Prog Related

Review by SouthSideoftheSky
Special Collaborator Symphonic Team

3 stars People are being a bit too harsh on this album, I think. This album is different from all other albums that Alan Parsons has ever made - with the Project or otherwise. This album is softer, more floating, less rhythmic and less commercial compared to the Alan Parsons Project's albums. And it is certainly less hard rocking than what I usually enjoy. But the very good electric guitar work and the highly melodic songs makes it appealing somehow.

This music is more similar to Pink Floyd and Mike Oldfield than to the Alan Parsons Project. And apparently some fans of the Project don't like this. Personally, I actually think this album is more enjoyable than many Alan Parsons Project albums. I see it as Parsons finally being able to break free from the formula he followed (sometimes successfully, sometimes not) on the Project's albums throughout the 80's.

I especially like the way this album is book ended by the two acoustic Blue Blue Sky tracks. And I like the consistency of the album - it really feels like a complete piece of music rather than just a collection of songs held together by a concept only (as on most Alan Parsons Project albums).

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 Try Anything Once by PARSONS BAND, ALAN album cover Studio Album, 1993
3.41 | 45 ratings

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Try Anything Once
Alan Parsons Band Prog Related

Review by SouthSideoftheSky
Special Collaborator Symphonic Team

3 stars There is really no good reason to make a distinction between the Alan Parsons Project and the Alan Parsons Band; list this album together with the Project's albums in your collection. Musically this is very much a continuation of what Parsons had done through the years with the Project. This album is, I would say, better than most of the Project's albums, however.

As on the Project's albums, there are several different vocalists involved here, singing on different tracks. Surprisingly this works better here than on most of their other albums. The instruments are all very well played and the production is excellent (as always with Parsons).

The most interesting track is Jigue, which is a folky instrumental featuring fiddle and mandolin and other instruments associated with Folk music (in addition to electric and acoustic guitars, keyboards and sax). This piece could be categorized as Prog Folk or as modern Folk rock. I love that kind of stuff! Re-Jigue is a symphonic piece reprising the theme of Jigue.

Mr. Time would have fitted perfectly on Rick Wakeman's Time Machine album (which also was a concept album about time that actually sounded very much like an Alan Parsons Project album!).

The biggest problem with this album is that the songs, though all very well written, few are really memorable, or for that matter very adventurous.

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Thanks to ProgLucky for the artist addition. and to easy livin for the last updates

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