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Electric Light Orchestra - A New World Record CD (album) cover


Electric Light Orchestra


Crossover Prog

3.36 | 264 ratings

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Symphonic Prog Specialist
3 stars How I miss 1976 when "A New World Record" was released, I was 12 years old, a prog newbie and thought ELO was the greatest and most artistic musical expression since Johan Sebastian Bach. I must have listened this album one thousand times and heard the most popular songs on the radio another thousand, no need to analyze, almost nothing to compare them with, so I was blind but happy.

After a couple of years I had already 200 Prog' LP's and noticed they were good, but not great and that bands like KING CRIMSON, ELP, early GENESIS or YES were really original in sound and structure, something that I could no longer find in ELO.

I started to understand that a couple of violin and cello arrangements over clearly Rock songs plus a guy that could fake the voice of a Soprano on stage is not Prog, and my blind happiness ended.

A lot of people consider Kansas an AOR band only because they dared to release a very good but commercial song named Dust in the Wind, well "Telephone Line" is even less original, absolutely commercial and made exclusively to ensure the album will have a hit single. I consider this track in the same level as STYX's "Babe" or ASIA's worst tracks. This track takes the entire album down, if you have problems with sugar, please avoid it or you'll need insulin.

Rockaria is a good joke and nothing more, clearly structured as a Rock & Roll with a pseudo soprano addition absolutely artificial, entertaining but nothing more.

If I had to choose a good track I would stay with the melancholic and incredibly beautiful "Livin' Thing" the violins give a gypsy Hungarian atmosphere that IMO is close to perfection, if any track was made for Jeff's voice is this one.

The rest of the songs are almost in the same vein, rock with violins and Cello, and a bunch of guys pretending to be more original than they really are

By no reason this album should be considered Progressive Rock, because it isn't even remotely close, but despite the genre it's a very good release (Except for the horrendous "Telephone Line"), so if you just want good music it's your album.

How to rate "A New World Record" is another problem, 5 or 4 stars are out of the question, because it's not essential for any Prog' collection being that by this point of their musical evolution ELO wasn't even Prog related.

2 Stars would be unfair, beause not only fans of ELO will enjoy it, mainly is very good music for anybody, so I will give 3 stars, because good but not essential describes my opinion about "A New World Record".

If we were in a Rock & Roll forum I would probably rate it with 4 stars, but in Prog Archives, there's not a valid reason to do it.

Ivan_Melgar_M | 3/5 |


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