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Emerson Lake & Palmer - Brain Salad Surgery CD (album) cover


Emerson Lake & Palmer


Symphonic Prog

4.17 | 2129 ratings

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Andrea Cortese
Special Collaborator
Honorary Collaborator
4 stars I have no acrimony toward Emerson, Lake and Palmer. They're one of the most important prog rock bands in history and I loved their unique sound since the very first time I listened to such pieces as "Lucky Man" and "Tarkus". In Trilogy I've found their most convincing peak, with regards to my personal tastes, at least. Brain Salad Surgery is something different. It's their peak of maturity and complexity and Emerson really Is the band here. No doubt about that.

By the way, the whole result appears to me "light and shade". The album opens magnifically with the memorable "Jerusalem" and "Toccata". This last, in particular, is a very successful job: pompous and classical, structured upon a wise transplant of "old" into "new". One of the best efforts of Keith Emerson.

"Sill...You Turn Me On" continues the tradition of Lake's mellow and acoustic songs as "Lucky Man" or "From the Beginning" and features a wonderful electric guitar and harpsichord's effects. Unfortunately it's only under three minutes long.

"Benny the Bouncer" is also traditional tune (honky tonk) in their discography and it's justly reduced at 2,21 mns 'cause it's only a pause of meditation for the listener. But then, what's up? Does "Karn Evil" is really the masterpiece that many tell it is?

The first two parts of "Karn Evil" are still exciting, for sure, but the remaining two lacks of freshness, in my humble opinion, at the risk of being cold and boring. Rick not avoided by the more "improvisation-like" music' structure.

All in all I cannot deny the intrinsic value of the opus from a prog point of view but it is not the album I usually like to enjoy from them.

3.75 stars.

Andrea Cortese | 4/5 |


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