In 1970, the progressive rock supergroup forever known as Emerson Lake & Palmer was launched upon an unsuspecting world, and the '70s were never the same as one band after another playing this sophisticated form of rock music seemed to pop up all over the world. Of course, ELP weren't the first, as you had King Crimson, The Moody Blues, Jethro Tull, Genesis, Yes, Pink Floyd, and Gentle Giant (among others) all trying to find their way at the same time, but it was ELP who really took things to another level on a mass scale. Comprised of Keith Emerson (The Nice), Carl Palmer (Crazy World of Arthur Brown/Atomic Rooster), and Greg Lake (King Crimson), this was a trio of amazing pedigree, and together they created plenty of magic throughout the decade, starting off with this very impressive self-titled debut album. After the tragic death of Keith Emerson earlier this year, BMG is releasing a series of reissues, of which this is the first along with Tarkus, Pictures at an Exhibition, and The Anthology, with more coming later in the year. A two disc set, we have here the original album in its remastered form from 2012, as well as a second CD containing Steven Wilson's new stereo mix from that same year, along with other bonus material. It all comes housed in a lovely double digipack with a nice booklet filled with photos and info.
The 2012 remaster sounds crisp and powerful, allowing classic tunes like "The Barbarian", "Tank", "Lucky Man", "Take a Pebble", and of course "Knife-Edge" to really jump out of your speakers with added clarity. The combination of Emerson's virtuoso piano, Hammond organ, and Moog with Palmer's drum acrobatics and Lake's smooth vocals made for a powerful sound that electrified audiences looking for something new to latch on to. Blending rock, classical music, jazz, and folk, ELP could attempt something like "The Three Fates", "The Barbarian", and "Tank", and they would go even further into unchartered waters on subsequent releases. Over on the second CD, you have a stereo mix from Steven Wilson, which is where you'll want to pop on the headphones and pick up all the little nuances that Wilson has uncovered. It's a shame that we didn't get a Blu-ray release with some other audio options, but this mix is still quite good. A few alternate takes are included, as well as a sizzling "Rave Up" jam, making for a fun bonus disc of goodies for the long time fans.
Emerson Lake & Palmer was a classic back in 1970, and it still is today, now even better thanks to this dazzling reissue. Celebrate not only the genius that was Keith Emerson but also this great band with these new & upcoming reissues from BMG...you won't regret it!
See more about this release on our recent YouTube show!
Disc One- The Original 1970 Album (2012 Remaster)
1) The Barbarian
2) Take a Pepple
4) The Three Fates:
i. Clotho-Royal Festival Hall Organ
ii. Lachesis-Piano Solo
iii. Atropos-Piano Solo
6) Lucky Man
Disc Two-The Alternate Album (2012 Steven Wilson Stereo Mix)
1) The Barbarian
2) Take a Pebble
3) Knife-Edge (with extended outro)
5) The Three Fates: Atropos
6) Rave Up
7) Drum Solo
8) Lucky Man
9) Take a Pebble (alternate take)
10) Knife-Edge (alternate take)
11) Lucky Man (First Greg Lake solo version)
12) Lucky Man (alternate version)