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Greg Lake - Greg Lake CD (album) cover

GREG LAKE

Greg Lake

 

Prog Related

2.98 | 38 ratings

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Easy Livin
Special Collaborator
Honorary Collaborator / Retired Admin
4 stars Greg and Gary's grand adventure

Greg's first true solo album (as opposed to his side of "Works") sees him venturing well outside what might be considered his traditional territory. In reality, this is better looked upon as being by Greg Lake the five piece band. The line up of the band includes rock guitarist Gary Moore and keyboard player Tommy Eyre along with the rhythm section of Tristam Margetts and Ted McKenna.

The important thing here is not to approach the album expecting to hear the soft acoustic songs we would normally associate with Greg's contributions to ELP. Gary Moore has a major influence on this album, giving it a much harder edge than we are used to from Lake. Greg takes to the challenge with relish, and appears to thoroughly enjoy himself, especially on up-tempo songs such as "Retribution drive" and "Long goodbye".

The opening "Nuclear attack", written by Moore is a sort of cross between Moore's "Murder in the skies" and Europe's "The final countdown". The song has a hard, gritty feel, while retaining a commercial edge. "Love you too much" has an intriguing song-writing credit which includes both Greg Lake and Bob Dylan. It's only when we get to "It hurts" that we stumble on the first of Lake's solo compositions. The song has much more in common with Lake's usual comfort zone, but even then it features a fine guitar solo, perhaps by guest musician Steve Lukather.

"The lie" has a slightly more intricate structure, with some good soft passages alternating with blues tinged louder sections. Only "Someone" comes across as a superfluous song, being a rather ordinary AOR song with little to commend it. Things quickly get back on track with an emotive version of "Let me love you once before you go", a performance which would have been right at home on Greg's side of "Works". The closing "For those who dare" is a sort of "Lucky man" on steroids. The marching beat and bagpipes create an anthemic feel as Greg spits out this powerful song of battle.

There is nothing progressive about this album, this is rock pure and simple. The musicianship is however of an exceedingly high quality, and this coupled with some exciting compositions makes for a thoroughly enjoyable experience. The songs have a power and substance to them which makes for a compelling listen. Pity about the uninspired sleeve though.

Easy Livin | 4/5 |

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