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Alan Parsons - The Time Machine CD (album) cover


Alan Parsons


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2.46 | 72 ratings

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3 stars In this album, Parsons has begun more and more to use the electronic touch to his album (which completely takes over by the next album, "A Valid Path" (2004)). The title track "The Time Machine", was apparently used in the Austin Powers movie (the spy who shagged me), although I never heard it in the movie. My edition of the CD also contains a bonus track called "Dr. Evil Edit", with sampled sounds from the movie (maybe you remember Dr. Evil talking about the giant laser called "the Alan Parsons Project" ?). The music on the album is a bit of a hotch-potch, the tracks are almost clumsily put together, and not at all falling into each other that natural way Alan Parsons usually masters very well. (This is a conclusion that I have reached after much listening to this album; a new listener might not agree). It makes the two tracks "No Future in the Past" and "Press Rewind", which are actually pretty good but stoved away round the back, seem less attractive somehow.

The album actually has very good qualities and nice songs, but the strange mixing of them makes them all seem less worth. They work against each other instead of helping each other build a unity. That might be the whole idea thought, the concept being a "Time Machine", bringing you from one place to another in no particular order. "Out of the Blue" is a nice, smooth ballad about the weary time-traveller, "Call Up" a rather irritating repetative song about bringing back people whose ideas and lives have had a great effect on us. "Ignorance is Bliss" is a kind of ballad, "Rubber Universe" an instrumental tune somewhat like Parsons classical instrumental works only with a more modern sound. "The Call of the Wild" suddenly brings you into some old Irish folk-tale- atmosphere, a song about fighting against xenophobia and not being afraid of things that are different. "No Future in the Past" and "Press Rewind" are two rather normal pop/rock songs with a pretty nice beat and sound, a bit like "I Can't Look Down" or "Fall Free" from "On Air" (1996). "The Very Last Time" is a nice, soft ballad about dealing with the memory of a dear friend passed away. Beverley Craven's vocals and a string quartet help the song into a beautiful sound and melody. Finally, "Far Ago and Long Away" is a sort of slow, trance-like instrumental half-dark dream that doesn't say much. This listing of the songs is rather necessary, because a whole theme for the album is almost impossible to put together. All in all, it could've been done in a better way as a whole, but the individual songs are good in themselves if you give them a chance.

| 3/5 |


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