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EMERSON LAKE & PALMER

Symphonic Prog • United Kingdom


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Emerson Lake & Palmer biography
Emerson, Lake & Palmer

ELP revolutionized the 70's rock scene by introducing a new line-up format. This fact really mattered due to each musician's geniality and unlimited talent that, put together, generated a level of music never achieved by anybody else as of yet. All of the musicians came from established bands before joining forces together: Greg LAKE came from KING CRIMSON, Carl PALMER came from ATOMIC ROOSTER, and Keith EMERSON came from THE NICE.

They explored their capabilities to an extreme, even with the technology limitations of the early 70's, breaking ground, setting the new parameters for a new vein in the english pop music (at the time) which would be called progressive music. ELP released 10 outstanding albums during the 70's, and after a long break, they got back in the 90's with a new approach, but still making good music. In 1986 Cozy POWELL replaced PALMER and they put together EMERSON, LAKE and POWELL, a good effort as well.

They've pushed their ambitions over-the-edge. On "Tarkus" the title suite was an inventive and edgy suite revolving around jazzy textures. Their most popular album "Brain Salad Surgery", was their most grandiose and refined. Next, the more adventurous listener might try "Trilogy" or ELP's self-titled first album. In my opinion, these four albums form the core of ELP's best material. Other good ELP albums include "Pictures at an Exhibition", their provocative, fiery and intense take on a classical work. and "Welcome Back My Friends To The Show That Never Ends", a triple-live album (now on double-CD) with some absolutely stunning playing.


Being that some albums belong to a different band with only two members of ELP, we have to make this addition:


Emerson, Lake & Powell

Emerson, Lake & Powell, often abbreviated to ELPowell, were an offshoot of a classic prog band Emerson, Lake & Palmer with Cozy Powell taking over the drumming duites in place of Carl Palmer which released one self-titled album in 1986.

After releasing Love Beach in 1978 Emerson, Lake & Palmer became silent for a couple of years until Emerson and Lake met during summer 1985 inspired by Jim Lewis, a vice-pr...
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Emerson Lake & Palmer official website

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Trilogy (Deluxe Edition)Trilogy (Deluxe Edition)
Razor & Tie 2015
Audio CD$14.31
$14.33 (used)
Emerson Lake & PalmerEmerson Lake & Palmer
Razor & Tie 2013
Audio CD$8.88
$8.85 (used)
Tarkus (Deluxe Edition) (2 CD Set)Tarkus (Deluxe Edition) (2 CD Set)
Razor & Tie 2013
Audio CD$8.83
$6.37 (used)
Come & See the Show: Best of Emerson Lake PalmerCome & See the Show: Best of Emerson Lake Palmer
Razor & Tie 2012
Audio CD$7.08
$7.07 (used)
Pictures at an ExhibitionPictures at an Exhibition
Import · Remastered
Sony UK 2011
Audio CD$3.10
$2.03 (used)
EssentialEssential
Import
Sony UK 2011
Audio CD$4.26
$4.35 (used)
Works 1Works 1
Import
Sony UK 2011
Audio CD$5.71
$5.70 (used)
Welcome Back My FriendsWelcome Back My Friends
Import · Remastered
Sony UK 2011
Audio CD$9.53
$11.39 (used)
Emerson, Lake & Palmer: The Birth of a Band - Live at the Isle of Wight 1970Emerson, Lake & Palmer: The Birth of a Band - Live at the Isle of Wight 1970
Multiple Formats · DTS Surround Sound
Eagle Rock Ent 2006
DVD$4.09
$2.95 (used)
Right Now on Ebay (logo)
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EMERSON LAKE & PALMER - LOVE BEACH (IMPORT) NEW CD USD $61.60 Buy It Now 2h
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Emerson Lake & Palmer - Trilogy 2015 [CD New] USD $21.18 Buy It Now 3h 6m
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4h 4m
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EMERSON,LAKE & PALMER Debut Album 1970 UK Poster size Press ADVERT 16x12" USD $14.41 Buy It Now 5h 4m
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3LPs Emerson Lake & Palmer / Doobie Brothers / Dr. Hook USD $5.96 Buy It Now 8h 10m
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Emerson Lake & Palmer Trilogy LP 1972 Vinyl Cotillion Records USD $9.00 Buy It Now 10h 52m
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In Concert Emerson Lake & Palmer CD album (CDLP) Japanese promo AMCY-218 USD $44.18 Buy It Now 11h 18m
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Emerson Lake & Palmer ELP UK interview 1977 USD $10.86 Buy It Now 11h 21m
Emerson Lake & Palmer UK Int. + Williams Twins ad 1973 USD $10.86 Buy It Now 11h 21m
Emerson Lake & Palmer , Trilogy CD 1972 Atlantic USD $6.88 Buy It Now 11h 26m
Emerson Lake & Palmer Welcome Back My Friends T... JPN 2 CD (Double CD) USD $51.62 Buy It Now 11h 32m
Emerson Lake & Palmer - Welcome Back - CD X 2 (2007) Prog Rock (ELP) USD $12.01 Buy It Now 11h 46m
Emerson Lake & Palmer - From The Beginning - CD X 2 (2011) Prog Rock (ELP) USD $12.15 Buy It Now 11h 46m
Emerson. Lake & Palmer. Trilogy LP. 1972. USD $3.75 Buy It Now 11h 57m
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ELP Emerson Lake & Palmer UK Promo LP advert 1979 XCVS USD $12.31 Buy It Now 12h 12m
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EMERSON LAKE & PALMER The Atlantic Years 2-CD 19-Track Best Of 1971-78 USD $6.99 [0 bids]
13h 42m
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Touch And Go Emerson Lake & Palmer 12" vinyl single record (Maxi) Japanese USD $28.90 Buy It Now 14h 11m
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EMERSON LAKE & PALMER "Works Vol 2" LP NM USD $16.49 Buy It Now 14h 19m
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Emerson Lake & Palmer 7" record Fanfare For The Common Man... UK USD $14.40 Buy It Now 16h 42m
Pictures At An Exhibition Emerson Lake & Palmer German vinyl LP album record USD $20.21 Buy It Now 16h 43m
Emerson, Lake & Palmer - Works (2 LP set) 1 side by each (triple-fold cover) USD $19.99 Buy It Now 16h 51m
EMERSON LAKE & PALMER trilogy UK 1973 RE Manticore LP (A1/B1) prog rock NM USD $16.20 Buy It Now 16h 52m
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Emerson, Lake & Palmer (ELP) Live In America Luxembourp Import CD Still Sealed USD $29.99 Buy It Now 16h 58m
ELP Emerson Lake & Palmer show ticket Jackson, Mississippi 25/10/77 USD $14.49 Buy It Now 17h 8m
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EMERSON LAKE & PALMER discography


Ordered by release date | Showing ratings (top albums) | Help Progarchives.com to complete the discography and add albums

EMERSON LAKE & PALMER top albums (CD, LP, MC, SACD, DVD-A, Digital Media Download)

4.24 | 1639 ratings
Emerson Lake & Palmer
1970
4.04 | 1438 ratings
Tarkus
1971
4.09 | 1278 ratings
Trilogy
1972
4.12 | 1490 ratings
Brain Salad Surgery
1973
2.84 | 583 ratings
Works Vol. 1
1977
2.36 | 481 ratings
Works Vol. 2
1977
2.06 | 525 ratings
Love Beach
1978
3.12 | 356 ratings
Emerson Lake & Powell
1986
2.83 | 363 ratings
Black Moon
1992
1.73 | 296 ratings
In The Hot Seat
1994

EMERSON LAKE & PALMER Live Albums (CD, LP, MC, SACD, DVD-A, Digital Media Download)

3.85 | 777 ratings
Pictures At An Exhibition
1971
4.21 | 451 ratings
Welcome Back My Friends To The Show That Never Ends
1974
2.65 | 164 ratings
Emerson Lake & Palmer In Concert
1979
2.90 | 129 ratings
Live At The Royal Albert Hall
1993
3.28 | 123 ratings
Works Live
1993
3.31 | 41 ratings
Emerson,Lake & Palmer - King Biscuit Flower Hour (AKA "Live")
1997
2.74 | 59 ratings
Then And Now
1998
3.37 | 56 ratings
Live At The Isle Of Wight Festival 1970
1998
2.85 | 14 ratings
The Show That Never Ends
2001
4.09 | 26 ratings
Original Bootleg Series From The Manticore Vaults Vol. 1
2001
3.73 | 23 ratings
Original Bootleg Series From The Manticore Vaults Vol. 2
2001
3.25 | 17 ratings
Original Bootleg Series From The Manticore Vaults Vol. 3
2001
3.25 | 35 ratings
Live In Poland
2001
2.29 | 16 ratings
Best of the Bootlegs
2002
2.95 | 10 ratings
Lucky Man (Live) (Re-released as " Fanfare: The 1997 World Tour")
2002
3.82 | 14 ratings
Emerson Lake and Powell: Live In Concert - Lakeland Florida, 1986 (An official bootleg)
2003
3.20 | 11 ratings
Emerson Lake and Powell: The Sprocket Sessions (An Official Bootleg)
2003
2.41 | 9 ratings
The Best Of Emerson Lake & Palmer
2003
2.70 | 11 ratings
Original Bootleg Series from the Manticore Vaults, Vol. 4
2006
3.32 | 20 ratings
A Time And A Place
2010
2.54 | 30 ratings
Live at High Voltage 2010
2010
3.43 | 28 ratings
Live At Nassau Coliseum '78
2011
4.18 | 39 ratings
Live at the Mar Y Sol Festival '72
2011
3.88 | 8 ratings
Emerson, Lake and Powell - Live In Concert and More...
2012
3.33 | 6 ratings
Live in Montreal 1977
2013
2.50 | 2 ratings
Once Upon A Time In South America
2015

EMERSON LAKE & PALMER Videos (DVD, Blu-ray, VHS etc)

2.81 | 15 ratings
Welcome Back
1992
3.76 | 36 ratings
Live At The Royal Albert Hall (DVD)
2001
3.52 | 74 ratings
Pictures At An Exhibition - 35th Anniversary Collectors Edition
2002
3.29 | 16 ratings
Inside Emerson, Lake & Palmer 1970-1995
2003
4.55 | 28 ratings
Works Orchestral Tour/Manticore Special
2003
3.58 | 49 ratings
Live At Montreux 1997 (DVD)
2004
4.07 | 25 ratings
Masters From The Vaults
2004
2.00 | 1 ratings
Live In Concert (DVD)
2004
3.81 | 63 ratings
Beyond The Beginning
2005
2.60 | 27 ratings
The Birth Of A Band - Isle Of Wight Festival 1970
2006
4.50 | 8 ratings
Rare Broadcasts
2007
4.23 | 40 ratings
40th Anniversary Reunion Concert (High Voltage Festival 2010)
2011

EMERSON LAKE & PALMER Boxset & Compilations (CD, LP, MC, SACD, DVD-A, Digital Media Download)

2.39 | 57 ratings
The Best of Emerson, Lake & Palmer
1980
4.22 | 41 ratings
The Atlantic Years
1992
3.49 | 59 ratings
The Return Of The Manticore
1993
1.73 | 9 ratings
Classic Rock Featuring "Lucky Man"
1994
3.89 | 37 ratings
The Best Of Emerson, Lake & Palmer
1994
1.42 | 13 ratings
Extended Versions: The Encore Collection
2000
2.56 | 13 ratings
The very Best of Emerson, Lake & Palmer
2001
3.42 | 12 ratings
Fanfare For The Common Man [The Anthology]
2001
1.35 | 21 ratings
Re-Works
2003
3.71 | 12 ratings
The Ultimate Collection
2004
3.50 | 12 ratings
An Introduction To... Emerson Lake & Palmer
2004
4.44 | 16 ratings
From The Beginning (5CD+DVD)
2007
3.55 | 13 ratings
The Essential Emerson, Lake & Palmer
2007
3.29 | 9 ratings
Come And See The Show: The Best Of Emerson Lake & Palmer
2008
2.11 | 8 ratings
High Voltage
2010
2.67 | 6 ratings
The Essential Emerson, Lake & Palmer
2011
1.80 | 5 ratings
From the Beginning - The Best of ELP
2011

EMERSON LAKE & PALMER Official Singles, EPs, Fan Club & Promo (CD, EP/LP, MC, Digital Media Download)

3.39 | 18 ratings
Lucky Man / Knife Edge
1971
3.38 | 17 ratings
From the Beginning
1972
4.28 | 29 ratings
Jerusalem
1973
2.68 | 13 ratings
Brain Salad Surgery/ Excerpt From Brain Salad Surgery
1973
3.11 | 9 ratings
C'est La Vie / Hallowed Be Thy Name
1977
2.43 | 9 ratings
Tiger in a Spotlight / So Far to Fall
1977
4.09 | 15 ratings
Fanfare For The Common Man
1977
1.77 | 12 ratings
Canario
1978
3.80 | 10 ratings
Peter Gunn
1980
3.43 | 13 ratings
Touch and Go
1986
1.83 | 9 ratings
Affairs of the Heart
1992
2.36 | 9 ratings
Black Moon
1992
4.25 | 4 ratings
Farewell to Arms (promo)
1992
1.64 | 6 ratings
Affairs of the Heart
1992
2.75 | 4 ratings
Affairs Of The Heart (limited edition collectors doublepack)
1992
4.00 | 4 ratings
Gone too Soon (promo)
1994
2.43 | 22 ratings
I Believe In Father Christmas
1995
4.00 | 8 ratings
Fanfare For The Common Man
2002

EMERSON LAKE & PALMER Reviews


Showing last 10 reviews only
 Emerson Lake & Palmer by EMERSON LAKE & PALMER album cover Studio Album, 1970
4.24 | 1639 ratings

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Emerson Lake & Palmer
Emerson Lake & Palmer Symphonic Prog

Review by AngusH

3 stars This was one of the first prog albums I bought, the first ELP album I ever heard, and the only ELP album I can stand to still listen to, although I'll admit it's years since I'd heard it before today. Generally speaking I think ELP went on to embody most of the worst traits of progressive rock, but that would be later. This is the most restrained ELP would ever sound.

'Take a Pebble' is the highlight for me, and the main theme would not have been out of place on a King Crimson album at this time. Very melodic, and I've never heard anything from Emerson to top the work he does here. Sometimes less is a whole lot more. Nothing else on this album grabs me nearly as much, but it's all listenable. 'The Three Fates' comes the closest to that later pompous ELP sound that I really don't enjoy, but I don't mind it here. I've always felt that this one track in particular was a huge influence on the progressive rock that would come out of Italy in the years following this. I could have done without the drum solo on 'Tank'. I don't mind well-written pop music, but 'Lucky Man' does not fit that bill for me. The moog solo, although probably quite remarkable at the time, in hindsight feels really out of place on what was otherwise a very conventional song.

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 Trilogy by EMERSON LAKE & PALMER album cover Studio Album, 1972
4.09 | 1278 ratings

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Trilogy
Emerson Lake & Palmer Symphonic Prog

Review by Quinino

5 stars My ALL-TIME Greatest #24

The reunion of these 3 excellent musicians really put the trio thus formed in a league apart.
I dare to say they began, filled in and finally locked up a whole new category of rock music.

Global Appraisal

I admit they also excel in their several other great albums but this one lingers forever in my heart for sentimental reasons, beyond the unquestionable musical quality itself.

As usual in the band's albums of this period, the tone of show-offish grandeur is ever present, even the softer tracks don't fail to exude some of that EL&P intensity that can represent the best (and sadly would also make the worst) of their work.

What a tightrope to come across? And they were so good at it, while they held the balance.

Goodies

Emerson's personalized keyboard playing, the characteristic dynamics of Palmer drumming, the unmistakable warm vocals of Lake, all put together create a trademark sound never matched, the abundant imitators shamelessly paling by comparison.

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 Brain Salad Surgery by EMERSON LAKE & PALMER album cover Studio Album, 1973
4.12 | 1490 ratings

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Brain Salad Surgery
Emerson Lake & Palmer Symphonic Prog

Review by VianaProghead

5 stars Review Nº 36

The three musicians that constitute the super-group Emerson, Lake & Palmer came from three established bands, before they have joined together. Keith Emerson (keyboards) came from The Nice, Greg Lake (vocals, guitars and bass guitar) came from King Crimson and Carl Palmer (drums and percussion) came from the Atomic Rooster. This is a super band that explores the maximum capabilities of their performers and of their music.

This is my third review of an album of Emerson, Lake & Palmer. However, this is only my second review of a studio album from the band. Their fourth studio album "Brain Salad Surgery" released in 1973 and their eponymous debut studio album "Emerson, Lake & Palmer" released in 1970, already reviewed by me, are, in my humble opinion, their two best studio albums and they are also both, my favourites studio works of the group.

"Brain Salad Surgery" became, without any kind of doubt, the most famous studio album from the band. The lyrics were co-written by Lake and Peter Sinfield, the ex-King Crimson band member. Sinfield was also the creator of the King Crimson's concept and he was also the only lyricist in their first four albums. Lake, of course had worked with Sinfield during his days with King Crimson. "Brain Salad Surgery" was also the first album imprinted by the band, under their new record label, the Manticore Records.

"Brain Salad Surgery" is an album with five themes divided into eight tracks. The first track "Jerusalem" is a classical British church hymn, with which the English people are much familiarized since their school days. It's the band's musical arrangement of the Charles Hubert Parry's hymn, based on the prologue of William's Blake's poem "Milton". It was the only single taken from the album, but it wasn't released in the UK because it was banned by the BBC for potential blasphemy. It might offend their listeners, and so, the BBC said they wouldn't play it on the air. It's really a great version of the original piece. The second track "Toccata" is an instrumental track based on the fourth movement of Alberto Ginastera's "1st Piano Concert", which is a modern classical piece of music created by a famed Argentinean composer, and rearranged by Keith Emerson. It's another great musical interpretation by the band. The third track "Still?You Turn Me On" is the album's obligatory acoustic number. It's another Lake's classic acoustic ballad in the vein of "Lucky Man" and "From The Beginning". It's one of the Lake's best ballads and proved to be a big radio hit in the USA. The fourth track "Benny The Bouncer" is another comedic rocker song on the same mould of "Are You Ready Eddie?" and "Jeremy Bender/The Sheriff" and was written by Emerson, Lake and Sinfield. It's hardly considered a great song, but it indicates some of their musical influences and demonstrates that they aren't properly frightened to attempt something more vulgar. The fifth track "Karn Evil 9" closes the album with its magnum opus. It's divided into three movements or impressions, and the first is also divided into two parts. Despite the lyrics being co-written by Lake and Sinfield, "Karn Evil 9" is an epic created by Emerson. "Karn Evil 9" is definitely the piece that marked the highest point into their musical career and in the group's history. With it, they reached the peak of the fame. Their only piece that can be compared with it, it's the suite "Tarkus", from their second studio album "Tarkus" released in 1971.

The cover art of the album was created by Hans Rudolf "Ruedi" Giger. Giger's artwork integrates an industrial mechanism with a human skull and the new ELP's logo was also created by him. Giger's ELP logo, became a standard for the band and has been used extensively, since that moment. Giger is a Swiss surrealistic painter, sculptor and set designer, who is better known for his design work on the science fiction film "Alien" directed by Ridley Scott in 1979.

Conclusion: Despite "Emerson, Lake & Palmer" be considered by many as the best musical work of the group, "Brain Salad Surgery" is undoubtedly, in my humble opinion, the band's creative zenith. The sound quality of the album is absolutely stunning. The group employed the most advanced electronic technology available in that time, and the whole album represented the highest point that the trio would never achieved again. "Brain Salad Surgery" was the ELP's crowning artistic moment, and whether we like it or not, it remains one of the band's most important recordings and one of the best rock albums of all time, made by one of the greatest bands ever, but so often misunderstood. "Brain Salad Surgery" can probably be easily considered the best Emerson, Lake & Palmer album. Every song on it, has something enjoyable and sincerely, it doesn't seem that any track is really filler. However, as I wrote before, "Karn Evil 9" is definitely its real jewel. With "Brain Salad Surgery", the group achieved such high point into their musical career that only few have achieved. I strongly recommend it to whom that is a real fan of the progressive rock music.

Prog is my Ferrari. Jem Godfrey (Frost*)

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 Live At Nassau Coliseum '78 by EMERSON LAKE & PALMER album cover Live, 2011
3.43 | 28 ratings

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Live At Nassau Coliseum '78
Emerson Lake & Palmer Symphonic Prog

Review by Prog Leviathan
Prog Reviewer

2 stars This live release by Emerson Lake & Palmer covers the band's late career output, with an emphasis on their Works releases. I consider this period to the band's lowest point, so had poor expectations for Live At Nassau. However, even if you disagree with me and love these albums, it's unlikely you'll find Live At Nassau to be a go-to live release from the band. The recording quality, set list, production, and even instrumental performances disappoint on most levels.

First off, let's look at the setlist: we get some classic ELP tracks, namely "Tarkus" and "Take a Pebble", and that's about it. The goofball opening track, "Hoedown" doesn't count for much. "Tarkus" is always great, but there isn't as much gusto in this rendition as we've heard in the past. "Take a Pebble" is interrupted by a lengthy and meandering piano concerto, and the silly "Maple Leaf Rag". Afterwards, its basically highlights from Pictures at an Exhibition and Works. To me, this is a problem, because these albums aren't nearly as interesting as the earlier records. The ELP magic sort of falls flat; maybe its the fault of the song itself or maybe the band's performance, but whatever it is, most of this album sounds muddled and bland.

The real foe may be the production. The mid-levels are mixed much too high, leaving Palmer's excellent drumming at the margin, and even keyboards and bass feel lifeless. Lake's guitar during the ballads and quite moments sound very empty. That's how bad this album is: it makes "Lucky Man" sound uninspired!

Live At Nassau ultimately comes across as a subdued and muffled performance by a band known for its raucous attitude and energy. Of course, throwing garbage like "Nutrocker" and "Fanfare" in there doesn't help. Disappointing.

Setlist: 2 - Instrumental Performances: 3 - Stage/Energy: 3 - Live Experience: 1

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 Emerson Lake & Palmer by EMERSON LAKE & PALMER album cover Studio Album, 1970
4.24 | 1639 ratings

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Emerson Lake & Palmer
Emerson Lake & Palmer Symphonic Prog

Review by VianaProghead

5 stars Review Nº 15

This is my second review of an Emerson, Lake & Palmer's album. The first was their debut live album 'Welcome Back My Friends To The Show That Never Ends'. I chose review their eponymous debut studio album 'Emerson, Lake & Palmer', released in 1970, as my first studio review of them, because is my favourite studio work from the group.

The three band members came from three very well established bands, before they joined together. All of them were very talented musicians and very experienced too. Greg Lake came from a band that needs no introduction. He came from King Crimson and was one of their founder members. King Crimson are simply and undoubtedly, one of the best and most innovative progressive bands ever. He took part on their two first studio albums, 'In The Court Of The Crimson King' and 'In The Wake Of Poseidon'. Carl Palmer came from Atomic Rooster and he was also one of their founder members. Atomic Rooster is a British heavy progressive band. He has only participated on their debut eponymous studio album 'Atomic Rooster'. Finally, Keith Emerson came from The Nice and he was one of their founder members too. The Nice was a British symphonic progressive band who has combined classical, jazz, blues and rock music. Their music became the seeds of what will be the sound of Emerson, Lake & Palmer. He took part on all their four studio albums 'The Thoughts Of Emerlist Davjack', 'Ars Longa Vita Brevis', 'The Nice' and 'Elegy'.

Curiously, Emerson, Lake & Palmer could have been called HELP or Hendrix, Emerson, Lake & Palmer, if Jimi Hendrix had adhered to the project. It seems that Hendrix was tired of his own band and wanted to try something different and new. So supposedly, he expressed an interest in playing with them. However, because of scheduling conflicts, such idea couldn't be immediately held, and unfortunately, Hendrix died shortly after. However, the history was never confirmed. It even was contradicted by Lake, saying that it was just a rumour created by the press.

The front cover of the album depicts a fluttering white bird with a human ear in the bottom left corner. It was painted by Nic Dartnell and it seems that originally was for the Spirit, an American proto-prog band. It also seems that the figure man on the left of the cover is the Spirit drummer, Ed Cassidy. However, the artist denied, in an interview.

'Emerson, Lake & Palmer' has six tracks. The first track 'Barbarian', despite being attributed to the trio, is a musical arrangement of a Bela Bartok's piano piece, named 'Allegro Barbaro'. Although, the original piece be only for piano, the band rearranged the song for organ, bass and drums. This is a great aggressive track with a hard rock influence. The second track 'Take A Pebble' is a beautiful ballad by Lake, and is the lengthiest track on the album. This is a magnificent song with the powerful vocals of Lake. His singing is simply terrific, with the final line of the verses building on the legacy of King Crimson's 'Epitaph', which sounds even better. The third track 'Knife-Edge' is based on the first movement of Leos Janacek's 'Sinfonietta'. This is another great piece of music with a great showcase by all the three band members, with particular emphasis to the great bass lines. The fourth track 'The Three Fates' is an Emerson's concept piece of music, about the meaning of life, god and evil. The suite is divided into three parts. 'Clotho', an organ solo recorded at the Royal Festival Hall, 'Lachesis', a piano solo and 'Atropos', a piano trio. This is technically an excellent piece of music that showcases the rare musical talents of Emerson. The fifth track 'Tank' contains a Carl Palmer's small and beautiful solo studio drumming. Basically, the piece showcases Palmer's unique drumming style and features one of the few drum solos on a studio album. It also marks the first appearance of the Emerson's famous Moog synthesizer. The sixth track 'Lucky Man' is a ballad written by Lake for acoustic guitar, when he was a schoolboy. However, at the beginning, the song wasn't well received by Emerson and Palmer. It's a song with acoustic guitar, beautiful singing and a great synthesizer solo towards the end. It's, for me, one of the best songs ever written by Lake, and it became as one of the band's most commercial and accessible tracks.

Conclusion: 'Emerson, Lake & Palmer' is an excellent album, very fluent and very beautiful, with moody keyboards, memorable guitar lines, immaculate drumming, and above all, a great vocal work by Lake. It also still features very strong compositions and a magnificent and inspired musicianship. Emerson takes the band's music a little too strongly in his own hands on many occasions on the album. His virtuoso skills have become the defining factor on the band's music. However, fantastic musicians such as Lake and Palmer deserve certainly also a more prominent spot. Sincerely, and in my humble opinion, this album is with 'Brain Salad Surgery' the two best studio works from the group, only supplanted by their triple live album 'Welcome back My Friends To The Show That Never Ends'.

Prog is my Ferrari. Jem Godfrey (Frost*)

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 Welcome Back My Friends To The Show That Never Ends by EMERSON LAKE & PALMER album cover Live, 1974
4.21 | 451 ratings

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Welcome Back My Friends To The Show That Never Ends
Emerson Lake & Palmer Symphonic Prog

Review by VianaProghead

5 stars Review Nº 7

This is my first review of a live album on this site and it's also my first review of an Emerson, Lake & Palmer's album. I'm sincerely a great fan of "Welcome Back My Friends, To The Show That Never Ends". In the 70's, progressive rock music has produced excellent live albums. However, in my humble opinion, there are probably four live albums that deserve a special mention. Particularly, I'm talking about this album, and also about other three, "Playing The Fool" of Gentle Giant, "Yessongs" of Yes and "Seconds Out" of Genesis.

Usually I prefer studio albums instead live albums. Studio albums are better recorded and produced then the live albums. This is even truer when we are talking about the live albums from the 70's. In those days, recording live concerts with the technical means of the 70's were particularly a very difficult task and the final result wasn't always positive. However, there are some good exceptions and this is certainly one of those cases.

"Welcome Back My Friends, To The Show That Never Ends, Ladies And Gentlemen: Emerson, Lake & Palmer" is, for sure, one of the most extensive names that any album ever had. It was released in 1974, as a three vinyl disk album in a gatefold cover, and the inside of which used the letters E, L and P, as retainers for the individual disks. It reached fourth on the Billboard album chart, making of it, the Emerson, Lake & Palmer's highest charting album in U.S.A.

"Welcome Back My Friends, To The Show That Never Ends" was their last release during almost three years. Before that, they had recorded four more studio albums and another live album. After those releases, the group took an extended break to recover and pursue solo projects until their next common band's project "Works" (Vol. 1 & 2), released in 1977. That break, and the advent of the punk rock movement eventually began with the decline of the group. Unfortunately, it was confirmed with their seventh studio album "Love Beach", released in 1978.

My first contact with this album was in the 70's. In those times, I had a group of friends which occasionally met at the home of one of us. Usually we were playing cards and talking about music. One of my friends, the owner of the house, had bought a new tape recorder, a Dual, and he asked me if I didn't care if he records a copy of my original vinyl discs. I said there was no problem, and after he recorded it, every day that we met at his home, he always put his recorded cassette version. He was a fanatic of the band, especially by this live album. As we frequently gathered in his house, we always listened to the album and talking about the band. The guy was so persistent, that he managed to convince me, to sell him my original vinyl copy. Obviously, now I'm regretful by my act. However, I've already got a new version of the album, but this time on a CD version.

"Welcome Back My Friends, To The Show That Never Ends" has nine tracks. "Hoedown" is from "Trilogy". "Jerusalem" and "Toccata" are from "Brain Salad Surgery". "Tarkus" is from "Tarkus" and includes "Epitaph" from "In The Court Of The Crimson King" of King Crimson. "Take A Pebble" is from "Emerson, Lake & Palmer" and includes "Still?You Turn Me On" from "Brain Salad Surgery" and "Lucky Man" from "Emerson, Lake & Palmer". "Piano Improvisations" is an original track by Emerson with arrangements of different classical pieces of music, which includes Friedrich Gulda's "Fugue" and Joe Sullivan's "Little Rock Getaway". "Jeremy Bender/The Sheriff" is a medley from "Tarkus" and "Trilogy", respectively. "Karn Evil 9" is from "Brain Salad Surgery".

As I wrote above, with this triple live album Emerson, Lake & Palmer finished their best and most creative years. I honestly think that many views about this album changed all over the years. It became an album loved by some and hated by others. Personally, I'm still thinking the live versions are better than the studio. The musical quality of the album is superb, giving us 2 hours of some of the best moments over the progressive rock ever recorded.

Conclusion: This is a fantastic live album with a great sound. The songs on this live album are almost all from the two best studio albums of the band, "Emerson, Lake & Palmer" and "Brain Salad Surgery". The exception is the music suite "Tarkus", which is simply, in my humble opinion, their best piece of music. However, I sincerely regret that "Trilogy" be an album very few represented on this live work. I wanted the three band members had chosen their trilogy piece "The Endless Enigma (Part One)", "Fugue" and "The Endless Enigma (Part Two)" or the title track "Trilogy" instead of "Jeremy Bender/The Sheriff", which I never was a big fan. This is clearly and in my humble opinion their best musical work. Surely isn't very common the best album from a band be a live album. Sincerely, I really think that we are in presence of one of the greatest albums ever.

Prog is my Ferrari. Jem Godfrey (Frost*)

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 Tarkus by EMERSON LAKE & PALMER album cover Studio Album, 1971
4.04 | 1438 ratings

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Tarkus
Emerson Lake & Palmer Symphonic Prog

Review by Necrotica
Prog Reviewer

4 stars During the 70's, progressive rock was generally known as an "outcast" genre, despite occasional mainstream success from the most popular bands in the style. Critics generally cited it as being "pretentious" or "throwaway trash," while the public generally turned it down for more accessible AOR and disco for the era. All in all, it's really a shame that progressive bands were just thrown into this dark pit of rejection, considering there was much more talent to be had with these artists than with the mainstream work being played on the radio at the time. Emerson, Lake and Palmer are a big example of this fate (and they'd try to change their sound later, to negative results), and never does it shine more than on their sophomore album Tarkus.

At first glance, the trio's second album is very daunting, mainly because the first side is dominated by only one song: The title track. The second side of the record consists of shorter, generally more accessible arrangements. While the second side is a bit of a mixed bag, one thing can't be denied in all of this: The title track is truly one of the best progressive epics of the 70's, easily able to compete with the big guns like "Supper's Ready" (Genesis), "Close to the Edge" (Yes), or "Cygnus X-1, Book II, Hemispheres" (Rush).

The epic opens up with a choir-like crescendo into the main instrumental motif; The trio are all exceptional musicians, and they have the chance to really shine here. Carl Palmer's sweeping, swift drum work is complemented by Keith Emerson's melodic-yet-complex harmonies gracing the forefront, only to have Greg Lake's rapid bass work sandwiched in perfectly; It all creates a mesmerizing quality that is still just as powerful today as it was back then.

Everything soon slows down for the ballad-style section "Stones of Years." Greg Lake has quite a soothing voice, and the subtle bass/drum fills in the background give this portion a very dreamy, floating feel to it. Soon, a keyboard solo comes in, this time more subtle than in the intro. Keith Emerson shows a remarkable sense of variety and restraint here; This whole collective section is one of the best sections of the song, mainly because of how well-controlled and balanced it is. After this, all hell breaks loose; Every instrument clashes for a battle to the death in the most technical section of the song. The part doesn't last long, though, as it goes right back to a slower section, and so on.

The way the band control their dynamics and know when to balance out their sound is a huge factor in how this song is so good as an epic; Any musician can simply wank on his/her instrument for 20 minutes and slap the "epic" label on it, but ELP show remarkable compositional skill through the aforementioned control of their music. The themes are well placed, and the work building off of them follows suit splendidly. Overall, this song is a classic of progressive rock, and an outstanding track all in all.

Side two isn't quite as good, but has its perks as well. While one can do without the country-styled "Jeremy Bender" or the old time 50's rock and roll of "Are You Ready, Eddy?", other song pick up the slack nicely. Bitches Crystal is a technical piano-driven number with very fast percussion and a quick-rolling bassline; definitely a highlight of the album. "Infinite Space (Conclusion)" makes its case with a deeply somber tone mixed with subtle drumming and bass riffs. Overall, this side of the album is good, but simply not as fantastic as the title track.

Overall, this album is excellent for any prog fan, if just for the splendid first song. In any case, this album feels more complete as a full album than the band's debut and demonstrates a step-up from the meanderings of said first record. For a few albums, ELP would grow and grow; Too bad they eventually succumbed to commercial music...

(Originally published on Sputnikmusic)

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 Emerson Lake & Palmer by EMERSON LAKE & PALMER album cover Studio Album, 1970
4.24 | 1639 ratings

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Emerson Lake & Palmer
Emerson Lake & Palmer Symphonic Prog

Review by Big Kid Josie

4 stars From the first overdriven fuzz box bass note and organ crunch on this record, you know you are listening to something new and frightening. Emerson's organ has a Jon Lord-like metallic bite, much more aggressive than his work with the Nice, and Lake's bass and Palmer's drums are taking no prisoners. Even the piano sounds pissed off. Bartok's "The Barbarian" is like a tank grinding the musical landscape under its treads, but this is not punk or grunge---this is aggressive music played by virtuosos! (Emerson has said in his autobio that lyrics and tunes were slow to come on their debut album and it sounds like he took his frustrations out on his keys)...This same violent underpinning is there in "Knife Edge", their brilliant take on Janacek's Sinfonietta, the Carl Palmer drum showcase "Tank" and the church organ workout "The Three Fates". In the middle of these tricky songs, a bit of classical piano might break out, followed by a blast of Hammond or a maniacal drum passage.

Even the piano middle section in Lake's beautiful ballad "Take A Pebble" (among the best songs he did with the band) has a driven quality. This is not Rick Wakeman's tastefully-elegant baroque piano---much as I love it as well---but keyboard-as-machine-gun. Having said that, it still retains it's beauty and the opening and closing passages are almost gentle and fragile, compared to the rest of the album. "Take A Pebble" is a song that sounds almost like a bridge between classic ELP and early King Crimson---it has that meandering Lake acoustic guitar solo in the middle that reminds me of Crimso's jazzy, meandering side (no surprise, as Lake had just come from that group). The last song, the classic hit "Lucky Man", sounds out of place on this album, a folk song among classical organ and piano work-outs, but it is possessed of a magnificent opulence, as Lake adds on multi-tracked choir vocals on the choruses, guitar solos, and that classic Keith-playing-with-the-Moog-glide-control synthesizer solo on the outro, a howl that fades into a low frequency whistle that fades into an electronic hiss. Palmer's echo-ing drums ride out the end to a masterful FM radio hit that announced to the world that there was this strange-sounding new band, ELP!

Their debut album was truly the work of a prog rock supergroup...there hadn't been a union of a top-notch keyboardist, very good bass player with a soaring, majestic voice, and top-notch drummer like this in a power trio format like this before. Groundbreaking work in my opinion. The only reason I don't give this one 5 stars is I am reserving that for Brain Salad Surgery...

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 Tarkus by EMERSON LAKE & PALMER album cover Studio Album, 1971
4.04 | 1438 ratings

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Tarkus
Emerson Lake & Palmer Symphonic Prog

Review by AndyJ

3 stars ELP's 'Tarkus' is a real love/hate affair for me. I absolutely love the epic song 'Tarkus', and absolutely hate the rest of the drivel that exists on this album. I'll duck and cover while I wait for the hail of abuse I'm likely to get for spouting such blasphemy against an acknowledged great prog album!

Here's my take on this very mixed album. ELP put all of their eggs solely in one basket, the song 'Tarkus'. They composed and played their hearts out, and in the process created something truly wonderful. A real prog aficionado's dream of a song. 'Tarkus' ticks everyone of my progressive boxes - it has amazing keyboard work from Keith Emerson, brilliant strings and vocals from Greg Lake and the drumming from Carl Palmer is out of this world at times. 'Tarkus' is so full of depth and complexity that it holds you attention throughout the 20 minutes.

But ELP had only composed 20 minutes of music with the album opener, not enough for a long play record. So the second half, at least to my ears, is pure filler. They might have been better off leaving the second half of the vinyl blank, or reciting the shipping forecast. Or perhaps postponing the release of the album until they had better compositions to put on there. I find very little in the second half of the album even slightly worthy of my attention. So much so that if this whole album had been like the second half then I would suspect this album would be rated as one of the worst 1970's albums ever.

When I listen to this album I stop after the first track. And that's pretty sad. I have tried to listen to the remaining songs on the album, but compared to what came before I find them utterly unworthy of my attention, and frankly I find songs like 'Jeremy Bender' and 'Are You Ready Eddy?' really quite trite and tiresome.

For the opening epic I give this album 5 stars, and for the remaining 6 songs I give this album a pitiful 1 star. By my reckoning that's a solid 3-star rating, but personally I'd only buy this album for the opening track. 'Tarkus' the progressive 20 minute suite deserves to be listened to by everyone, the rest of the album may or may not be your cup of tea!

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 Brain Salad Surgery by EMERSON LAKE & PALMER album cover Studio Album, 1973
4.12 | 1490 ratings

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Brain Salad Surgery
Emerson Lake & Palmer Symphonic Prog

Review by ster

5 stars ELP's Brain Salad Surgery is an essential album in any progressive rock collection. This is a fact. No opinion can change it. I can't believe some of the negative responses. Are you kidding me? ELP was a band that did what they were good at and made no apologies. They went straight for the throat. BSS is the culmination of all of their aspirations. Big, bombastic, self indulgent, daring etc. all of these in full force here. This is the pure definition of prog. Ignoring all of the boundaries and just going for it.

The album starts off with Jerusalem. A traditional English hymn trumpeting out in an explosive fanfare here. Awesome and very powerful.

Next up is Tocatta. Based on the Fourth Movement of Alberto Ginastera's 1st Piano Concerto on the Fourth Movement of Alberto Ginastera's 1st Piano Concerto. A masterpiece in itself. I used to use this song to test my new stereo equipment. It had al the highs and lows, the soft and the hard.

Still You Turn Me On. Probably the best of all of Greg Lake's ballads.

Benny The Bouncer. Just pure fun. Hilarious lyrics make up this piece of comic relief. Still the excellent musicianship is evident.

Next is The Karn Evil 9 Suite. A technical masterpiece full of the technical mastery ELP are known for with the lyrics of the great Peter Sinfield. I don't really know what else to say about it other than they don't hold back at all and the music benefits from it.

Like I said earlier, this is essential in a prog collection. Not having this would be like not having The Sex Pistols or the Ramones first album in your punk collection. Like having a Beatles collection minus Sergeant Peppers. Like having a metal collection without Black Sabbath's Paranoid etc.....

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