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Eloy - Silent Cries and Mighty Echoes CD (album) cover




Psychedelic/Space Rock

4.04 | 657 ratings

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3 stars Eloy's shameless tribute to Pink Floyd's peak 1970s albums was also the best selling album of their career. I feel this had more to do with the follow up phenomenon than anything else, in which a band releases a major breakthrough that creates a buzz in the community ("Ocean") and an environment in which the next release is virtually assured of attaining highest sales.

While another musically strong album, "Silent Cries" suffers from its imitation status. But they never got as morbid and despairing as Pink Floyd, for better or worse. Even here, a sense of optimism and faith shines through the gloom.

The opening section of "Astral Entrance" casts a knowing nod at "Shine on You Crazy Diamond" which kicked off PF's "Wish you were here", even if the subsequent "Master of Sensation" is Eloy all the way. Further along, we have an unfortunate attempt to replicate "The Great Gig in the Sky"'s propensity to female histrionics. But, apart from these displays of idolatry, the album stands pretty well on its own. Bornemann performs more lead guitar solos than on the last few releases and shows himself more than capable, but plenty of spaciness remains in Detlev Schmidtchen's accompaniment. In fact, I do believe Eloy also tipped the hat to fellow Germans Tangerine Dream in the final part of "Apocalypse", which sports the telling "Force Majeure" (a name of a concurrent TD album) moniker.

"Pilot to Paradise" is the most original sounding song on the album, with a central riff that would be explored and ameliorated on later efforts, but, along with the superb bass underpinning, it motors along rather well. In quieter sections, gentle and subtle lead guitar interfaces with the synths until Bornemann regales with a similarly caressing vocal melody. The softest contribution is "De Labore Solis", but it never really develops beyond ambient, which is rare for Eloy. The album closes with "Mighty Echoes", which borrows lyrically from ELP's "Take a Pebble" but musically is again more like PF circa Dark Side, although it must be said that Bornemann sounds nothing like Gilmour! As with its predecessor, this album culminates well in the final minutes.

Due to its general, at times, blatant lack of originality, I have to dock a half star to Eloy's last 1970s effort. Still a partial triumph for its era, and one of the last echoes of epic 1970s prog.

kenethlevine | 3/5 |


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