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Planets
Eloy
Planets
Genres: Pop, Rock
 
  •  Track Listings (9) - Disc #1

Remastered reissue of the Prog band's 1982 album includes 1 live bonus track from 1983 'On The Verge Of Darkening Lights'. EMI. 2005.

      
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CD Details

All Artists: Eloy
Title: Planets
Members Wishing: 3
Total Copies: 0
Label: EMI
Release Date: 2/21/2005
Album Type: Extra tracks, Import, Original recording remastered
Genres: Pop, Rock
Styles: Progressive, Progressive Rock
Number of Discs: 1
SwapaCD Credits: 1
UPC: 724356377622

Synopsis

Album Description
Remastered reissue of the Prog band's 1982 album includes 1 live bonus track from 1983 'On The Verge Of Darkening Lights'. EMI. 2005.

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CD Reviews

This is without a doubt one of Eloy's finest from the '80s
BENJAMIN MILER | Veneta, Oregon | 03/07/2005
(5 out of 5 stars)

"Planets was the 1981 followup to Colours, with the same lineup of guitarist/vocalist Frank Bornemann, bassist Klaus-Peter Matziol, keyboardist Hannes Folberth, guitarist Hannes Arkona, and drummer Jim McGillivray. While Colours was not a concept album, Planets is. This album was meant to be a double album, but EMI/Harvest prevented it, so the band had to conclude the story with their following album, Time to Turn (which while still worth having, doesn't live up to the greatness of Planets). Planets also found a British release, on the Heavy Metal International label, with a totally different cover (courtesy of Rodney Matthews). The German original, on Harvest, featured artwork from Winfried Reinbacher, who was also responsible for the artwork to Colours, Silent Cries and Mighty Echoes, and Time to Turn.

The 1980s were difficult time for too many prog rock bands. Many of these bands had either broken up, or started recording more pop-oriented material. And one might think Eloy would have fallen in to this trap by 1981, and I am ever so glad they didn't, as Planets proved! The heavy guitar riffs of Colours have now been toned down, making this album a spacier effort than Colours. Hannes Folberth used the Mini Moog, clavinet, string synth, and piano, plus he started acquiring some new polyphonic synths. "Introduction" (not to be confused with "Introduction" found on Power and the Passion) is a full on synth piece, with layers of great spacy synths. "On the Verge of Darkening Lights" is the first actual song on the album. There's some great use of clavinet, spacy Moog, and string synths to be found, and Klaus-Peter Matziol even gives us a little slap-bass on one section. I love the synths that close the piece and segues in to "Point of No Return". This is one of the more straightforward pieces on the album, dominated by polyphonic synthesizers and guitar. "Mysterious Monolith" features a lot of bass work, spacy synths, but the second half of this piece is dominated by an extended synth solo. The second half of the album finds the band attempting to return to the style they explored for the album Dawn. The reason for that is the band's use of orchestra, and it sounds just like the same orchestra used for Dawn. "Queen of the Night" is that first song that uses the orchestra. It starts off as a piano ballad, before the whole band kicks in, and even a female chorus is used along with the orchestra. Folberth then gives us his spacy synth solo as well. "At the Gates of Dawn" is another prime example of the band attempting to revist the sound of Dawn (I think even the song title would clue you in). This is an all-instrumental piece dominated by Folberth, with wonderful sounding piano and Minimoog, on top of the orchestra. "Sphinx" is truly one of the album's high points for me. This is a song that goes through several changes, from the actual song to some spacy use of synthesizers. There's an almost Genesis-like synth solo, except spacier than anything Genesis would do. The last piece is "Carried by Cosmic Winds", which features more spacy synths that start off, but the vocals kick in and the orchestra is used once again.

Planets marked the final album with Jim McGillivray (who only lasted two albums, this one, and their previous, Colours), as Fritz Randow would return to the band, and they would record the conclusion to Planets, that is Time to Turn.

Planets really took me by surprise. I would have imagined Eloy reaching a dead-end by this point (like too many other prog rock bands), but instead they gave us another great album. They are an example of how to do prog right in the difficult times of the early '80s. This is truly a must have album for all who enjoy Eloy."
Excellent first part of a double concept album
Zeus Pendragon | 02/01/2006
(5 out of 5 stars)

"This is the second release by Eloy in the eighties, and what a release it is. By this time most of the 70's prog rock classics started to take their music in very different directions. The mediocre albums released by bands like Yes, Genesis and EL&P through this decade are proof of that.

However, and fortunately, Eloy kept the essence of its music during this period. Colours, the album before Planets, is an excellent release and was a strong statement that the band, despite the line up change, still had a lot to deliver.

Planets is a concept album, the first part of an intended double album that was completed with the release of Time to Turn the year after. The story is magnificient, leaning towards a philosophical science fiction kind of telling.

Musically, the songs are shorter than in previous releases, more direct but still beatifully crafted adn very consistent as a whole.

Introduction is a synth piece which sets the tone for the whole album. The next three songs are linked in a conceptual fashion. On the Verge of Darkening Lights shows us Eloy at its best. Heavy guitars, great bassplaying and dynamic drumming in the first couple of minutes lead to a resting point with a beatiful keyboard melody. This section is followed by some inspiring twin keyboard solo over a heavy and pumping rhythm, very spacey. The song ends with some lovely synth sounds that fade gradually into Point of no Return. This is a heavier track, though much more simple, that keeps the almost the same tempo all the way through. Hannes Arkonna and Frank Bornemman's guitar work and Hannes Folberth's synths keep the song interesting, anyway.

Mysterious Monolith, the third song of the suite, and the fourth song of the album, is very spacey. This song begins with a beating heart sound when guitars and keyboards break in providing one of the most beautiful harmonies of the whole album. Synth work is prominent at all times, especially in the end section.

Queen of the Night is one of my favourite songs of the album. It starts with piano and strings, which are heavily used in 3 songs. This songs goes through a lot of changes in rhythm and mood. Some sections are quite heavy and agressive foretelling albums like Performance, Metromania and Ra. Other sections are more spacey and atmospheric resembling their earlier productions. A great track!

At the Gates of Dawn is instrumental that features outstanding string arrangements and synth work. The song lasts around four minutes. It seems it doesn't change very much, but when you pay attention to the arrangements and details you realize there is a lot going on.

Sphinx is another favourite. It features a beatiful synth melody over a simple but strong rhythm section. Halfway through the song there is an atmospheric resting point where synths really take a leading role. This is one of my favourite moments of the album. The band kicks in again with a mid tempo section that keeps growing in scope and intensity until it reaches its peak before fading away to give way to the drums and the same synth melody that started the track off. The song slowly fades into wind sounds, cosmic winds.

Carried by Cosmic Winds features some lovely and intricate synth work. There is a female chorus in the middle of the song before the strings take the leading role with one of those typical Eloy melodies that will live forever. Only then the album finishes.

If you earlier Eloy releases such as Dawn or Ocean you shouldn't have big complaints about Planets. The Songs are shorter, yes. But the quality is still quite high. Besides that, vocals sound much better now. Frank has really grown up since the older days. His singing is much more solid, stronger and delivers more intensity than ever. The rest of the band plays brilliantly and the concept are completely Eloy. The sound is more contemporary and in albums like this one can appreciatte how Eloy influenced the UK neo prog bands like Pendragon, IQ, Pallas and others."