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Eloy - Ocean CD (album) cover




Psychedelic/Space Rock

4.22 | 1082 ratings

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Prog Reviewer
4 stars If you believe the ProgArchives rating system, this popular 1977 album marked the apex of Eloy's long, open-ended career. True or not, it can certainly be enjoyed today as a throwback guilty pleasure, and a nostalgic time warp to a laser-lit Golden Age of epic, arena-filling Space Rock, where we all exist as perpetual 17-year olds.

Even with the obvious Pink Floydian plagiarisms the album remains a classic of its kind, for better or worse. The soaring synthetic strings; the heavy electric guitar chords; the vigorous rhythm section (displayed to great advantage in the first notes of the album opener "Poseidon's Creation") all back-date it in the best possible way. And if you ignore the trite fantasy concept, the clumsy lyrics, and Frank Bornemann's barely adequate English-language singing, what's left might have been a timeless Progressive Rock masterpiece.

But the album is simply too bogged down in its own pseudo-mythic narrative, expressed in dime-store poetry dragged forcibly through a German-English dictionary. A sample verse, from the song "Decay of the Logos":

"In taper indented triangles / Sterilized drops of blood are wildly raving along / And their shadows, they are crossing my horizon!"

Clearly, something was lost in translation.

Here's my advice, for what it's worth. Listen to the album again, while mentally erasing everything except the music itself. You should notice a dramatic improvement, especially in the lack of hokey declamation cluttering the long, awkwardly-titled climax of "Atlantis' Agony at June 15th - 8498, 13 p.m. Gregorian Earthtime", an awesome mood piece when the imaginary gag is in place. On a speculative side note, maybe the reason Atlantis self-destructed was because their clocks and calendars were so out of whack.

I'm being a smart-aleck, of course. The album itself is a Lost Continent of sorts, submerged beneath that deep sea of musical legend known as the 1970s. "The past is a foreign country," wrote novelist L.P. Hartley, "they do things differently there." Maybe so, but I'll still be listening to Eloy at 14 p.m. on any given Earthtime.

Neu!mann | 4/5 |


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