From the Beginning
Riley Smith | Boston | 02/19/2010
(5 out of 5 stars)
"This album showcases the incredible talents of three mega talents on one stage at one time. They are and will always be the best at their craft."
ELP's third studio album is still groundbreaking 35 plus yea
Terrence J. Reardon | Lake Worth (a west Palm Beach suburb), FL | 03/07/2010
(5 out of 5 stars)
"English prog rock giants Emerson Lake and Palmer released its fourth album in two years entitled Trilogy in August of 1972.
That year was arguably progressive rock's peak with Yes releasing Fragile and Close to the Edge. Genesis released their first UK Top 20 charting album Foxtrot. Jethro Tull released its first #1 album Thick As a Brick. The Moody Blues issued their chart topping Seventh Sojourn. Also Pink Floyd released its first US Top 50 album Obscured by Clouds and were performing and recording their classic Dark Side of the Moon which would come out in 1973.
However, 1972 belonged to Emerson Lake and Palmer (or ELP for short to describe keyboard playing maestro Keith Emerson, singer/bass player/guitarist Greg Lake and drummer Carl Palmer) as they earlier that year released Pictures At an Exhibition (a live recording of their classic adaptation of Mussorgsky's classical masterpiece) and at the same pace recorded the followup to 1971's classic Tarkus (which was the only #1 album for ELP in their homeland and first US Top 10 album) with Lake once again in the producer's seat with Yes co-producer Eddy Offord engineering. Would this album continue ELP's winning streak or start of a bad rut (read on and find out as I did in November of 1996 when I first acquired the Rhino CD issue).
The album opens with the lengthy epic "The Endless Enigma" with a full-blown "Fugue" sandwiched in the middle written by Emerson and Lake. Next was ELP's biggest US single which was the acoustic ballad "From the Beginning" (penned by Lake) which has Greg on acoustic guitar and playing a nice tasty guitar solo and people overlook his great guitar playing skills. Continuing the band's counterpointing to being serious with the hilarious 'The Sheriff" (penned by Emerson and Lake). This includes stellar drumming by Carl and great Hammond organ and double tracked piano work by Keith about a cowboy who has difficulties catching bad guys like Big bad Josie. The first side ends with a stellar rocking rendition of Aaron Copland's classical piece "Hoedown" which is at a faster speed as opposed to Copland's original. It includes Hammond organ work and trumpet-like fanfares on synthesizers by Keith, stellar bass guitar work from Greg and great drumming by Carl.
The second side begins with the epic title cut (penned by Emerson and Lake). Starts out as a piano and voice thing from Keith and Greg then it switches gears and goes into a superb epic. Then we have a short but punchy rocker called "Living Sin" which has Lake singing part of the song in a deep voice and sounds as heavy as things like Black Sabbath were doing at the time (this track was penned by all three ELP members). We close with the epic keyboard heavy closing instrumental "Abbadon's Bolero" penned by Emerson.
Trilogy would prove to be another winner from ELP and it would give the band its first US Top 5 album reaching #5 in the fall of 1972 and another million seller.
There are two remasters out one that Shout Factory released which to me sounds like a victim of the loudness war whilst the UK Sanctuary is sonically superior and not overly compressed and also has a bonus live version of "Hoedown".
This album is recommended!"