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Emerson Lake & Palmer - Emerson Lake & Palmer CD (album) cover


Emerson Lake & Palmer


Symphonic Prog

4.24 | 2015 ratings

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Prog Reviewer
4 stars The band Emerson, Lake and Palmer are arguably the first ever prog super group, comprising of members from already established British progressive groups. Keith Emerson was from The Nice, Greg Lake of King Crimson and Carl Palmer of Atomic Rooster, these three musicians joined together to create Emerson, Lake and Palmer, or simply ELP. The guys decided to name the band after each member's last names as they were all well-known musicians and this would grant the band immediate recognition. Luckily, something good came out of this supergroup in their debut album" Emerson, Lake and Palme"r which was the first in a string of successful albums. " Lucky Man" in particular was very successful and ELP gained a foothold so to speak on the musical public.

The album opener "The Barbarian" is quite a heavy song as far as this band goes, entirely instrumental and almost completely dominated by Keith Emerson's moogs and other Synthesizers. Parts of said song are very swift and display great virtuosity from all members, but especially from Carl Palmer whose percussion is a driving force in this number. Following "The Barbarian" is "Take A Pebble" which originated as a poem and then as a blues tune written initially by Greg Lake. The song was taken and literally stretched out to around 12 minutes, in which Emerson and Greg Lake play solo on the piano and guitar respectively. When the "pebbles drop" a fast pace instrumental section beings which then leads into an ending much like the beginning of the piece.

The calm brought on by "Take a Pebble" is completely thrown out the window with the next track, "Knife-Edge. ""Knife Edge" is quite a loud song with heavy keyboard, percussion and bass guitar lines. The lyricism of "Knife-Edge" is very catchy and the bass guitar echoing in the back round complements the vocals very well. The addition of instrumental interludes between vocal sections gives the song a, kind of repetitious feel. The band was taken to court over a keyboard section "borrowed" from a 20th centaury composer's song. Luckily the dispute was solved out of court and royalties were payed to the composer's family. Next is "The Three Fates", a song completely dominated by Keith Emerson.until the last two or so minutes when the whole band comes out with all guns firing.

Next is another instrumental called "Tan"k which begins immediately with swift percussion from Palmer and thrumming bass guitar, which is soon joined by Emerson playing the main tune over the top. Carl Palmer's percussion solo in the middle of the song leads to another violent fusion of synthesizers, bass and percussion which in tern ends the song. Finally we come to "Lucky Man", which is probably ELP's most famous song. It's basically about a rich, lucky man who goes to war and dies. Acoustic guitar makes up the general feel of the song, with an electric guitar solo in the middle. The good-stuff comes towards the end of the song when Emerson plays probably the most memorable moog-solo in all prog. Great stuff.

1.The Barbarian (4/5) 2.Take a Pebble (4/5) 3.Knife-Edge (4/5) 4.The Three Fates (3.5/5) 5.Tank (3/5) 6.Lucky Man (5/5) Total = 23.5 divided by 6 = 3.916 = 4 stars Excellent addition to any prog music collection

ELP may not everyone's cup of tea, and many people dislike ELP with a bloody passion, but this album is one which everyone can enjoy along with 'Brain Salad Surgery.' This is real classic progressive rock, it doesn't come more genuine than this my friends. I'd recommend this album to everyone who enjoys classic 70's symphonic prog and fans of Yes, Genesis and to a lesser extent King Crimson should enjoy this album among the band's others.

Australian | 4/5 |


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