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Emerson Lake & Palmer - Brain Salad Surgery CD (album) cover

BRAIN SALAD SURGERY

Emerson Lake & Palmer

 

Symphonic Prog

4.13 | 1803 ratings

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TCat
Prog Reviewer
4 stars ELP's fourth album "Brain Salad Surgery" is a very important album, no doubt about it. To some, it is one of the best progressive albums ever, and it is the favorite of most ELP fans. I am one of the exceptions. I definitely love ELP, but I always seem to love the wrong ones, like the debut album, "Trilogy" and both "Works" volumes. I consider those four their best albums, but not this one. I know I have been cursed by the Prog Gods for this, but I find it lacking in versatility and dynamics. Most of that is because of "Karn Evil 9" which takes up most of the album. Even though I am very familiar with the epic track, I have always thought it was over 30 minutes of bombastic music that doesn't let up much. It is dense, it is mostly unrelenting and it seems to go on forever.

I apologize to those that love that track, but I find that I enjoy their music that relies more on the classically inspired music then I do the rock jams. On this album, my favorite track is "Toccata", and yes it is another quite "over-the-top" track, but there are probably more dynamics in that 7 minute track than there is in the entire "Karn Evil 9" suite. "Still You Turn Me On" is a great ballad by Greg Lake also. But, other than that, I continue to have a hard time with this album. I recognize the fact that the music and performances are stellar, and I completely understand that people love this album, but its just too much of a good thing for me, or something.

I'm not going to go into anymore detail than that, most people who love Prog are quite familiar with this album, as am I. But I usually only listen to it when I am listening through their entire discography as a whole. At least it's not as bad as "Love Beach" and beyond however. There is that at least. 3.5 stars for me, but since it is a prog staple and because the performances are so excellent, I will give it 4 stars.

TCat | 4/5 |

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