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Emerson Lake & Palmer - In The Hot Seat CD (album) cover


Emerson Lake & Palmer


Symphonic Prog

1.79 | 400 ratings

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Prog Reviewer
2 stars I remember that in late 1995 I read in a Rock Magazine that Keith Emerson received surgery in one of his hands due to problems caused by carpal tunnel syndrome. Years later I also read that Carl Palmer also had similar problems with carpal tunnel syndrome. It seems that these health problems were in progress during the recording of this "In the Hot Seat" (1994) album, their second and last studio album which they recorded after the reunion of ELP in the early nineties. There also were some personal problems mainly between Emerson and Lake during the recording of this album, another album on which Lake didn't act as their producer. A thing that finally brought even more problems when the band was planning the recording of a new album in 1998, and which finally caused the split of the band again, with Lake wanting to be the producer of their albums again, a thing on which Emerson and Palmer didn't agree with Lake.

With this album being recorded under these circunstances, and with the record label wanting a more commercial album, maybe it reflected all these problems. New producer Keith Olsen also had some co-writing credits with the members on the band in some songs, and they also had some external co-writers for some songs. The sound of this album is even more Pop Rock in sound than their previous album ("Black Moon") in mid nineties terms. It's not a totally bad album, but the external influences over their music are more apparent, with it sounding mostly like a Pop Rock album from the nineties. Maybe this album in the end became another "contractual obligation album" for them, like their "Love Beach" album from 1978. Or it is even more related in some ways to "To the Power of Three" (1988) album from the band called 3 (from Emerson and Palmer with Robert Berry replacing Lake). Anyway, this "In the Hot Seat" album really shows a band doing their jobs the best they could under the previously mentioned circunstances to fill a recording contract. In particular, the song called "Give Me a Reason to Stay" is a song written only by external songwriters. It maybe was given to them by the producer and / or the record label to have a song to be played in the radio. Unfortunately It doesn't sound as ELP. So, maybe some of the bad criticism given in some reviews to this album is justified in some way by this song and by the musical content of the album as a whole. Even the inclusion as a CD Bonus Track of a studio recording of their arrangement to Mussorgsky's "Pictures at an Exhibition" musical piece didn't help the album to be a better album. Their live versions of this musical piece from the seventies are much better than this studio recording with new arrangements from the nineties.

Guillermo | 2/5 |


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