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Electric Light Orchestra: Eldorado (remaster)

Classical music and rock were arguably never combined so perfectly as on 1974's Eldorado from the Electric Light Orchestra. A concept album about a world of dreams, Jeff Lynne and ELO created here a magical and sweeping mix of majestic sounds that touched on rock, classical, and prog rock styles, a formula that still is cherished by many to this day and has made the album long remembered and loved by music fans. The band were really starting to hone in on their sound with the previous On The Third Day, and here things really started to work for them, especially the songwriting talents of Jeff Lynne.

"Eldorado Overture" kicks things off with ELO and a 30 piece orchestra, creating a huge wall of sound and providing one of the albums most memorable melodies. The grand and dizzying violins & cellos then seque into the hit single "Can't Get It Out of My Head", a dreamy pop ballad featuring an emotional vocal from Lynne and a neat proggy Moog solo from Richard Tandy. "Boy Blue" is a rootsy rocker, with the violins of Mik Kaninski soaring over the dissonant cellos of Hugh McDowell and Michael Edwards. Things take a serious and slightly bluesy tone on the laid back and funky "Laredo Tornado", complete with Lynne's rumbling guitar licks, sneaky string arrangements, and Tandy's mysterious keyboard riffs. The band once again goes for a rootsy, slightly country-ish flavor on "Poor Boy (The Greenwood)", but then switch gears for a classical/prog feel on "Mister Kingdom", a grand piece with huge orchestrations and Lynne's powerful vocals. Layers of vocals and orchestrations punctuate the slight funk sounds of "Nobody's Child", and "Illusions In G Minor" is a spirited honky tonk rock & roller with rollicking piano, guitar, and strings. The album, and the overall story of the dream world, comes to a conclusion on "Eldorado" and "Eldorado Finale", giving this album a majestic finale, again with the main theme making an appearance to bring things to a bombastic end. There are two bonus tracks, the one that is of most interest is the "Eldorado Instrumental Medley", a near 8-minute amalgam of most of the central instrumental themes from the major songs (very cool stuff actually) and the brief "Dark City", which is actually an early idea for what eventually became "Laredo Tornado".

The sound quality on this remaster is excellent, but how different it will sound compared to the 2001 and late 90's remasters is up for debate. If you happen to own the early 90's CD version, which sounds very flat, this will be a great upgrade, and you get full lyrics here as well as commentary by Jeff Lynne and lots of vintage photos.

Track Listing
1. Eldorado Overture
2. Can't Get It Out Of My Head
3. Boy Blue
4. Laredo Tornado
5. Poor Boy (The Greenwood)
6. Mister Kingdom
7. Nobody's Child
8. Illusions In G Minor
9. Eldorado
10. Eldorado Finale
11. Eldorado Instrumental Medley
12. Dark City

Added: October 23rd 2006
Reviewer: Pete Pardo
Related Link: ELO Website
Hits: 2275
Language: english

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