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Lake, Greg: Greg Lake/Manoeuvres (remastered)

Here we have the Cherry Red reissue of ELP/King Crimson legend Greg Lake's 1981 & 1983 solo albums, his first two recordings after the split of ELP, fully remastered with bonus tracks. At this time Lake was desperately searching for a direction, not wanting to dive back into the prog rock bombast associated with his former bands, but not quite sure where else to turn. Hooking up with Toto members David Paich, Jeff Porcaro, David Hungate, and Steve Lukather, as well as guitarist Snuffy Walden (Stray Dog), some ideas began to formulate, but it was with the eventual line-up that included guitarist Gary Moore, keyboard player Tommy Eyre, bassist Tristam Margetts, and drummer Ted McKenna that the hard rock and pop sounds of these two albums finally began to formulate.

The presence of ex-Thin Lizzy axe-man Moore is just as prominent here as Lake, the vocalist in fine form but the guitarist lending a never ending assortment of riffs, licks, and solos. He brought his own song "Nuclear Attack" for the self-titled album sessions, a rampaging hard rocker complete with his fiery metal playing, but also shines on Lake's original material such as "Retribution Drive", "Long Goodbye", "The Lie", and "Love You Too Much". A good chunk of the songs on Greg Lake are more pop flavored fare, but there's enough gritty Moore guitar work to liven things up, and paired with Lake's always stellar vocals, it makes for a fun listen. Manoeuvres doesn't stray far from the formula, with the title track, "Too Young to Love" (featuring a scorching Moore solo), "Paralysed", and the organ fueled, Deep Purple influenced "Don't Wanna Lose Your Love Tonight" being a few of the highlights. The rest of the tunes are more ballad focused, with the emphasis leaning towards Lake's soaring vocal hooks and Eyre's keyboards rather than Moore commanding guitar work, but as it was 1983, that's not entirely surprising. The band would go and play plenty of live dates together, but neither album really took off like they expected, and Lake would soon jump briefly over to Asia, eventually getting back together with Keith Emerson, with Cozy Powell in tow instead of the still busy Carl Parlmer (Asia), while Moore went off to release his fine Victims of the Future solo album, signaling the end of Lake's solo career for a while.

Cherry Red's remaster sounds great here on both albums, and they've included a nice booklet packed with info on both of these albums. While neither are absolute classics, they are noteworthy for Lake's always solid vocals, the always stellar guitar work of the late Gary Moore, and a pop/hard rock direction that we don't always associate with Greg Lake.

See more about this release on our recent YouTube show!

Track Listing
1. Nuclear Attack
2. Love You Too Much
3. It Hurts
4. Black and Blue
5. Retribution Drive
6. Long Goodbye
7. The Lie
8. Someone
9. Let Me Love You Once
10. For Those Who Dare
11. You Really Got a Hold on Me
12. You're Good with Your Love
13. Cold Side of a Woman
14. Manoeuvres
15. Too Young to Love
16. Paralysed
17. A Woman Like You
18. I Don't Wanna Lose Your Love Tonight
19. It's You, You Gotta Believe
20. Famous Last Words
21. Slave to Love
22. Haunted
23. I Don't Know Why I Still Love You
24. Hold Me

Added: June 12th 2016
Reviewer: Pete Pardo
Related Link: Artist Website
Hits: 1791
Language: english

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