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Jon Lord Pictured Within album cover
3.85 | 47 ratings | 2 reviews | 28% 5 stars

Excellent addition to any
rock music collection

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Studio Album, released in 1998

Songs / Tracks Listing

- Part One: The Valley
1. Sunrise (5:47)
2. Pictured Within (5:22)
3. From The Windmill (6:55)
Part Two: Blue Sky Dreams
4. Circles Of Stone (2:24)
5. Menorca Blue (4:10)
6. Evening Song (8:00)
- Part Three: Of Heroes And Heroines
7. Music For Miriam (4:48)
8. Arc-En-Ciel (4:29)
9. Wait A While (5:57)
- Part Four: Beneath A Higher Heaven
10. Crystal Spa (14:40)
11. The Mountain-Sunset (5:24)
12. A Different Sky (6:49)

Total time 74:45

Line-up / Musicians

- Jon Lord / piano, keyboards, composer & producer

- Serge Maillard / vocals (2)
- Stefan Scheuss / vocals (2)
- Miller Anderson / vocals (2)
- Christina Lux / vocals (2,10)
- Sabine Van Baaren / vocals (2,10)
- Sam Brown / vocals (6,9)
- Thijs Van Leer / flutes
- Richard Keller / soprano sax
- Stefan Pintev / violin
- Rodrigo Reichel / violin
- Mike Routledge / viola
- Vytas Sondeckis / cello
- Haagen Kuhr / cello
- Ina Stock / oboe, cor Anglais
- Frank Struck / French horn
- Ravi / kora
- Colin Hodgkinson / fretless bass
- Mario Argandoņa / percussion, vocals (2)
- Pete York / orchestral percussion

Releases information

CD Virgin Classics ‎- 7243 4 93704 2 5 (1998, Europe)

Thanks to memowakeman for the addition
and to Quinino for the last updates
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JON LORD Pictured Within ratings distribution

(47 ratings)
Essential: a masterpiece of rock music(28%)
Excellent addition to any rock music collection(28%)
Good, but non-essential (38%)
Collectors/fans only (2%)
Poor. Only for completionists (4%)

JON LORD Pictured Within reviews

Showing all collaborators reviews and last reviews preview | Show all reviews/ratings

Collaborators/Experts Reviews

Review by ClemofNazareth
4 stars Jon Lord followed up on his lamentable 1982 ‘& friends’ release “Before I Forget” with a return to Deep Purple, seemingly content to put both his solo endeavors and his Whitesnake career behind him. Except for a mid-eighties collaboration with film/television producer Alfred Ralston titled “Country Diary of an Edwardian Lady” (which nobody I know has ever seen or heard), Lord wouldn’t release another non-MkII work until he recorded this album in late 1998. Not long after he would leave Deep Purple for good and embark on the latest phase of his career.

This and Lord’s other albums since it can really be thought of more as adult contemporary with strong classical leanings than as anything progressive. It seems he has chosen to live out his wild side (such as remains) in the form of the Hoochie Coochie Men collaborations. ‘Pictured Within’ is much more complex, regal and placid than that music though.

Lord was mourning the passing of his mother when most of this album was written and recorded, and he did so in Cologne, a place that afforded him an opportunity to reflect and develop the somber emotions expressed in this music. There is nothing flashy, loud, pompous or fast here. These are deeply personal compositions, mostly instrumental, and tend toward slow, lush piano arrangements. To emphasize the somber aspect of the music Lord enlisted a number of string players as well as an oboist, French horn player and flautist. The guest musicians here are different from the hard rock crowd who participated in most of his previous solo work. Most of the names are not easily recognized by prog music fans, as I suppose many of them come from the classical world and are therefore not known to many of Lord’s older fans.

It would be largely unproductive to expand on each individual track of the album, mostly because they are all musically quite similar (piano, strings, a little horn or flute, more piano), and also because only Lord can fully explain the deeper meanings of each song.

There are a few exceptional works on the album though. “Evening Song” features gorgeous and sultry vocals from Dutchwoman Sabine Van Baaren, and “Music for Miriam” is a wonderful composition almost exclusively focused on strings, with viola and cello figuring most prominently. Lord was going for great sorrow in the mood here, and he certainly achieved that.

The most ambitious piece on the album is the nearly fifteen minute long “Crystal Spa” which can best be described as an orchestral composition with an oboe as its centerpiece. I sat through a classical music concert once where oboe was the featured solo, and I have to say that it was one of the saddest experiences I’ve ever been through, simply because it seems to be impossible to play that instrument without its sound causing everyone in hearing range to burst instantly and uncontrollably into tears. An appropriate choice for such a poignant album.

This isn’t prog music I suppose, but certainly not everything any progressive musician does is either. It was a personal time and range of emotions that Lord chose to share with his fans and friends, and should be respected on its merits. If taken in that context I think most of his fans will be glad to have experienced it.


Review by Easy Livin
SPECIAL COLLABORATOR Honorary Collaborator / Retired Admin
4 stars At one with the Lord

Having released four solo albums between 1971 and 1982, Jon Lord waited a further 17 years before venturing back into his solo career. During the intervening period the classic Deep Purple reformed twice and then fell apart completely; Lord however kept the faith throughout. After the general disappointment with his 1982 release "before I forget", hopes were high that he would rediscover the inspiration which had been apparent on his three albums from the 1970s.

While the 12 tracks here tend to be listed as individual pieces, Lord's official website describes how they are actually grouped into four suites. These are "The valley" (tracks 1 2 and 3), "Blue sky dreams" (tracks 4,5 and 6) "Of heroes and heroines" (tracks 7,8 an 9) and "Beneath a higher heaven" (tracks 10, 11 and 12).

Lord stops short of restoring a full orchestra to the line up, but does call in an army of classical and rock musicians (including Thijs Van Leer of Focus) plus the ever present Pete York on percussion and female vocalist Sam Brown (Joe Brown's daughter). Brown is given a couple of lyric writing credits too, the only person other than Lord to receive such a credit. Jon had been working on the music for some time before recording commenced, the loss of his mother in 1995 having a clear influence on the mood of the album. Significantly, he signed with the Virgin Classics label for its release.

The virtually inaudible opening bars of "Sunrise" imperceptibly increase in volume until a cello picks out a theme and Jon plays his introductory notes on piano. And so we are quickly reassured that this is to be an album of considered beauty with strong symphonic leanings. Those who are familiar with Deep Purple's revisiting of their "Concerto" (captured on the "Live at the Royal Albert hall" album) will recognise the piece and the following title track, which also opened that gig. As at that performance, Miller Anderson delivers an impassioned vocal to this beautiful song. "From the windmill" is a slightly looser instrumental which features classical guitar. The track remains downbeat, but has a more contemporary feel overall.

"Circle of stones", which opens the second section "Blue sky dreams", is a short reflective composition for strings, which merges into "Menorca blue". Here the strings remain but become the accompaniment to the lead piano and flute (played by the aforementioned Van Leer). "Evening song" finds Sam Brown providing lead vocal for the first time, her pained vocals and the crying violin accompaniment now really testing the emotions.

The title "Music for Miriam" is Jon's direct dedication to his late mother, the piece introducing the "Of heroes and heroines" tracks. Solo violin forms the main part of this emotionally charged piece. "Arc-En-Ciel", while still melancholy, offers a welcome change of lead instrument to Cor Anglais, once again joined by piano. "Wait a while" features further vocals from Sam Brown, the song having a familiar, almost traditional feel to it. The familiarity may simply be that it also featured on the "Royal Albert Hall" album also sung there by Sam Brown.

The longest track on the album, "Crystal spa", runs to well over 14 minutes. It opens as a sort of requiem with choral vocals and orchestration, the strings holding the notes poignantly as Lord adds colour on piano. There is a resemblance here to Tangerine Dream's later trilogy of interpretations of Dante's "Divine comedy". "Mountain sunset" takes us full circle from the opening "Sunrise", painting a picture of the last light of day. The melody reminds me of Scottish airs and long evenings in the remote Highlands. We close with "Different sky", a final glimpse of (Jon) Lord's emotional landscape before we must return to our own reality.

It is probably fair to say that you need to be in the right mood to listen to and appreciate this album. "Pictured within" is not for those wanting to rock out or to sing along. It is an album for relaxation, for reflection, and as Jon himself was doing, for remembering those who are no longer with us. While the music remains impassioned but gentle throughout, this is not a morbid affair. It is quite feasible to enjoy the music while indulging in personal thoughts and memories.

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