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Posts from the ‘Alan Parsons Project’ Category

20
Sep

The Alan Parsons Project – Eve (1979) – Lp

The Alan Parsons Project was the collective reference to several lineups of a British progressive rock team, active between 1975 and 1990, whose rosters consisted of Alan Parsons and Eric Woolfson surrounded by a varying number of session musicians and some relatively consistent band members such as guitarist Ian Bairnson, arranger Andrew Powell, bassist and vocalist David Paton, drummer Stuart Elliott, and vocalist Lenny Zakatek.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Artist:  The Alan Parsons Project
Title:  Eve
Year:  1979
Format:  LP
Label: Arista Records
Catalog# 1A 062-63063

Eve is the fourth studio album by progressive rock band The Alan Parsons Project. It was released in 1979. Eve’s focus is on the strengths and characteristics of women, and the problems they face in the world of men. The album had originally been intended to focus on “great women in history”, but evolved into a wider concept. The album features several songs from a misogynist point of view, unusual for an Alan Parsons Project album.

Eve is The Alan Parsons Project’s first album with singer Chris Rainbow. The album’s opening instrumental “Lucifer” was a major hit in Europe, and “Damned If I Do” reached the US Top 30. “Lucifer” also is used as title track for the German political TV show Monitor.

For the most part, 1979’s Eve is somewhat overlooked as being one of the Alan Parsons Project‘s finest work, when in fact it involves some of this group’s most intricate songs. The album’s concept deals with the female’s overpowering effect on man. Each song touches on her ability to dissect the male ego, especially through sexual means, originating with Eve’s tempting Adam in the beginning of time. Not only does this idea gain strength as the album progresses, but a musical battle of the sexes begins to arise through each song. The gorgeous “You Won’t Be There” spotlights man’s insecurity. Sung by Dave Townsend, its melodramatic feel sets a perfect tone. The classically enhanced “Winding Me Up” follows suit, based on a woman’s ability to dominate her mate and opening up with sound of a wind-up doll being cranked. Other gems include the bitter but forceful “Damned If I Do” sung by Lenny Zakatek, and the dominating fury of “Lucifer,” a powerful instrumental. Even the loutish “You Lie Down with Dogs” bears wit with its gender inclined mud-slinging. The female vocalists, Lesley Duncan and Clare Torry do a splendid job of representing the females point of view throughout the album. Not only does Eve solidify its main idea, but the songs are highly entertaining with catchy rhythms and intelligent lyrics. Musically, the tempo appealingly switches back and forth from slow to quick, as does the temperament of the album. Somehow, Eve is dismissed as one of this band’s greatest efforts, when in fact it’s one of their finest marriages of both concept and music

All songs written and composed by Alan Parsons and Eric Woolfson.

 

Side one
1.  Lucifer” (instrumental)  (5:06)
2.  You Lie Down with Dogs” (lead vocal: Lenny Zakatek)  (3:47)
3.  I’d Rather Be a Man” (lead vocal: David Paton)  (3:53)
4. You Won’t Be There” (lead vocal: Dave Townsend)  (3:34)
5.  Winding Me Up” (lead vocal: Chris Rainbow)  (4:04)

Side two
1.  Damned If I Do” (lead vocal: Lenny Zakatek)  (4:48)
2.  Don’t Hold Back” (lead vocal: Clare Torry)  (3:37)
3.  Secret Garden” (instrumental)  (4:41)
4.  If I Could Change Your Mind” (lead vocal: Lesley Duncan)  (5:43)

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29
Jul

The Alan Parsons Project – Tales Of Mystery And Imagination (1976) – Lp

The Alan Parsons Project was the collective reference to several lineups of a British progressive rock team, active between 1975 and 1990, whose rosters consisted of Alan Parsons and Eric Woolfson surrounded by a varying number of session musicians and some relatively consistent band members such as guitarist Ian Bairnson, arranger Andrew Powell, bassist and vocalist David Paton, drummer Stuart Elliott, and vocalist Lenny Zakatek.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Artist:  The Alan Parsons Project
Title:  Tales Of Mystery And Imagination
Year:  1976
Format:  LP
Label:  Casablanca Records
Catalog#  6463160

Tales of Mystery and Imagination is the debut studio album by the British progressive rock band The Alan Parsons Project, released on 1 May 1976 by 20th Century Fox Records in the United States and on 1 June 1976 by Charisma Records internationally. The lyrical and musical themes of the album, which are retellings of horror stories and poetry by Edgar Allan Poe, attracted a cult audience. The title of the album is taken from the title of a collection of Poe’s macabre stories of the same name, Tales of Mystery & Imagination, first published in 1908 and reprinted many times since.

Musicians featured on the album include vocalists Arthur Brown of The Crazy World of Arthur Brown on “The Tell Tale Heart”, John Miles on “The Cask of Amontillado” and “(The System of) Dr. Tarr and Professor Fether”, and Terry Sylvester of The Hollies on “To One In Paradise”. The complete line-up of bands Ambrosia and Pilot play on the record, along with keyboardist Francis Monkman of Curved Air and Sky. Tales of Mystery and Imagination peaked at #38 on Billboard’s Pop Albums chart, and the song “(The System Of) Doctor Tarr And Professor Fether” peaked at No. 37 on the Pop Singles chart.

The Raven” features actor Leonard Whiting on lead vocals, with Alan Parsons performing vocals through an EMI vocoder. According to the album’s liner notes, “The Raven” was the first rock song to feature a digital vocoder. The prelude section of “The Fall of the House of Usher”, although uncredited, is inspired by the opera fragment “La chute de la maison Usher” by Claude Debussy which was composed between 1908 and 1917. “The Fall of the House of Usher” is an instrumental suite which runs 16 minutes plus and takes up most of Side 2 of the recording.

 

Side one
1.  A Dream Within A Dream  (3:42)
2.  The Raven  (3:58)
3.  The Tell-Tale Heart  (4:35)
4.  The Cask Of Amontillado  (4:29)
5.  (The System Of) Doctor Tarr And Professor Fether  (4:12)

Side two
1.  The Fall Of The House Of Usher  (15:13)
(a)  Prelude
(b)  Arrival
(c)  Intermezzo
(d)  Pavane
(e)  Fall
2.  To One In Paradise  (4:21)

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20
Mar

The Alan Parsons Project – Vulture Culture (1984) – Lp

The Alan Parsons Project were a British progressive rock band, active between 1975 and 1990, consisting of Alan Parsons and Eric Woolfson surrounded by a varying number of session musicians and some relatively consistent band members such as guitarist Ian Bairnson, bassist and vocalist David Paton, drummer Stuart Elliott, and vocalist Lenny Zakatek.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Artist:  Alan Parsons Project
Title:  Vulture Culture
Year:  1984
Format:  LP
Label:  Arista Records
Catalog# 206577

Vulture Culture is the eighth studio album by The Alan Parsons Project, released in 1984 via Arista label.

Vulture Culture‘s theme is another in which the fallacy of humankind is front and center. This time Parsons‘ message concerns the fact that everyone lives in a parasitic society, where it’s every man for himself. Those who can’t fend for themselves simply won’t survive in a world where the kindness of the human spirit is rapidly deteriorating. On this album, though, the songs are weaker and are less effective in bringing out the album’s complex idea. As it does have its moments, Vulture Culture lacks in cohesiveness and strength both lyrically and, to a lesser extent, musically. “Let’s Talk About Me” addresses the theme in its words, but the choppy rhythm takes away the attractiveness that could have been. The instrumental “Hawkeye” adds life and contrast to the album at just the right time. The most appealing song, “Days Are Numbers (The Traveller)” with vocalist Chris Rainbow at the helm, combines simplicity with a timeless chorus making for a truly beautiful ballad. Even though Parsons‘ theme is revealed, it’s done so with less clarity and doesn’t quite hit home. Without the usual balance of absorbing lyrics and well-maintained music, Vulture Culture remains one of this band’s less prolific albums.

 

Side one
1.  Let’s Talk About Me  (4:22)
2.  Separate Lives  (4:42)
3.  Days Are Numbers (The Traveller)  (4:26)
4.  Sooner Or Later  (4:26)

Side two
1.  Vulture Culture  (5:21)
2.  Hawkeye  (3:48)
3.  Somebody Out There  (4:56)
4.  The Same Old Sun  (5:24)

http://www.ad-vinylrecords.com/product/alan-parsons-project-the-vulture-culture-lp/

14
Jan

The Alan Parsons Project – Stereotomy (1985) – Lp

The Alan Parsons Project were a British progressive rock band, active between 1975 and 1990, consisting of Alan Parsons and Eric Woolfson surrounded by a varying number of session musicians and some relatively consistent band members such as guitarist Ian Bairnson, bassist and vocalist David Paton, drummer Stuart Elliott, and vocalist Lenny Zakatek.

the-alan-parsons-project-stereotomy

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Artist:  The Alan Parsons Project
Title:  Stereotomy
Year:  1985
Format:  LP
Label:  Arista Records
Catalog#  207463

Stereotomy is the ninth studio album by The Alan Parsons Project, released in 1985.
Not as commercially successful as its predecessor Vulture Culture, the album is structured differently from earlier Project albums, containing three lengthy tracks – “”Stereotomy” at over seven minutes, “Light of the World” at over six minutes, and the instrumental “Where’s the Walrus?” running over seven and a half minutes (making it the longest instrumental the Project ever made) and two minute-long songs at the end.
The cover artwork features an image of the demon “rainman”. The original vinyl packaging of the album was different from all the reissues: it featured somewhat more elaborate artwork of the paper sleeve supplied with a special colour-filter oversleeve. When inserted, the oversleeve filtered some of the colours of the sleeve artwork, allowing four different variations (2 per side) of it. That was supposed to symbolize visual stereotomy. In the reissues, only one variant remained.
The word “stereotomy” is taken from “The Murders in the Rue Morgue” by Edgar Allan Poe. It refers to the cutting of existing solid shapes into different forms; it is used as a metaphor for the way that famous people (singers, actors. etc.) are often ‘shaped’ by the demands of fame.
Stereotomy earned a Grammy nomination in 1987 for Best Rock Instrumental Performance – Orchestra, Group, or Soloist for the track “Where’s the Walrus?”

 

Side one
1.  Stereotomy   (7:15)
2.  Beaujolais   (4:27)
3.  Urbania (Instrumental)   (4:34)
4.  Limelight   (4:39)

Side two
1.  In The Real World   (4:17)
2.  Where’s The Walrus? (Instrumental)   (7:34)
3.  Light Of The World   (6:22)
4.  Chinese Whispers (Instrumental)   (1:02)
5.  Stereotomy Two   (1:18)

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17
Nov

The Alan Parsons Project – The Turn Of A Friendly Card (1980) – Lp

The Alan Parsons Project were a British progressive rock band, active between 1975 and 1990, consisting of Alan Parsons and Eric Woolfson surrounded by a varying number of session musicians and some relatively consistent band members such as guitarist Ian Bairnson, bassist and vocalist David Paton, drummer Stuart Elliott, and vocalist Lenny Zakatek.

the-alan-parsons-project-the-turn-of-a-friendly-card

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Artist:  The Alan Parsons Project
Title:  The Turn Of A Friendly Card
Year:  1980
Format:  LP
Label:   Arista Records
Catalog#  203000

The Turn of a Friendly Card is the fifth studio album by the British progressive rock band The Alan Parsons Project, released on 1 November 1980 by Arista Records. The title piece of the album, which appears on Side 2 of the LP, is a 16-minute suite, which was broken up into five tracks, with the five sub-tracks listed as sub-sections. The Turn of a Friendly Card album spawned the hits “Games People Play” and “Time“, the latter of which was Eric Woolfson‘s first lead vocal appearance.

With two of the Alan Parsons Project‘s best songs, the lovely ballad “Time” and the wavy-sounding “Games People Play,” The Turn of a Friendly Card remains one of this group’s most enjoyable albums. Parsons‘ idea, the subject of the album’s six tracks, centers around the age-old temptation of gambling and its stranglehold on the human psyche. On “Games People Play,” vocalist Lenny Zakatek sounds compelling and focused, giving the song a seriousness that aids in realization of the album’s concept. With “Time,” it is Eric Woolfson who carries this luxurious-sounding ode to life’s passing to a place above and beyond any of this band’s other slower material. The breakdown of human willpower and our greedy tendencies are highlighted in the last track, entitled “The Turn of a Friendly Card,” which is broken into five separate parts. “Snake Eyes,” sung by Chris Rainbow, is the most compelling of the five pieces, and ties together the whole of the recording. As in every Parsons album, an instrumental is included, in this case an interesting number aptly titled “The Gold Bug.” Like most of the band’s instrumentals, its flow and rhythm simulate the overall tempo and concept of the album, acting as a welcome interlude. Although short, The Turn of a Friendly Card is to the point and doesn’t let down when it comes to carrying out its idea.

 

Side one
1.  May Be a Price to Pay  (lead vocal Elmer Gantry)   (4:58)
2.  Games People Play  (lead vocal Lenny Zakatek)   (4:22)
3.  Time  (lead vocal Eric Woolfson backing vocal Alan Parsons)   (5:04)
4.  I Don’t Wanna Go Home  (lead vocal Lenny Zakatek)   (5:03)

Side two
1.  The Gold Bug  (instrumental)   (4:34)
2.  The Turn of a Friendly Card (Part One)  (lead vocal Chris Rainbow)   (2:44)
3.  Snake Eyes  (lead vocal Chris Rainbow)   (3:14)
4.  The Ace of Swords  (instrumental)   (2:57)
5.  Nothing Left to Lose  (lead vocal Eric Woolfson)   (4:07)
6.  The Turn of a Friendly Card (Part Two)  (lead vocal Chris Rainbow)   (3:22)

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31
Jul

The Alan Parsons Project – I Robot (1977) – Lp

The Alan Parsons Project were a British progressive rock band, active between 1975 and 1990, consisting of Alan Parsons and Eric Woolfson surrounded by a varying number of session musicians and some relatively consistent band members such as guitarist Ian Bairnson, bassist and vocalist David Paton, drummer Stuart Elliott, and vocalist Lenny Zakatek.

alan parsons project - i robot

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Artist:  The Alan Parsons Project
Title:  I Robot
Year:  1977
Format:  LP
Label:  Arista Records
Catalog#  AL 7002

“I Robot” is the second album by progressive rock band The Alan Parsons Project, engineered by Alan Parsons and Eric Woolfson in 1977.
“I Robot” is an art rock album that draws conceptually on author Isaac Asimov’s science fiction Robot trilogy, exploring philosophical themes regarding artificial intelligence.
The album was intended to be based on the I, Robot stories written by Asimov, and Woolfson actually spoke with Asimov, who was enthusiastic about the idea. As the rights already had been granted to a TV/movie company, the album’s title was altered slightly by removing the comma, and the theme and lyrics were made to be more generically about robots rather than specific to the Asimov universe.
The cover inlay read:

“I Robot… The story of the rise of the machine and the decline of man, which paradoxically coincided with his discovery of the wheel… and a warning that his brief dominance of this planet will probably end, because man tried to create robot in his own image.”

The title of the final track, “Genesis Ch.1 v.32,” follows this theme by implying a continuation to the story of Creation, since the first chapter of Genesis only has 31 verses.
The original vinyl release had a gatefold-style cover; the inside spread had printed the lyrics for the non-instrumental selections and a monochrome photograph of Parsons himself.
Three singles were released from this album: “I Wouldn’t Want to Be Like You”, “Don’t Let it Show” and “Day After Day (The Show Must Go On).” The LP track “Breakdown” went into heavy rotation on AOR stations and continues to be played on classic rock radio.
The album cover photo of the band members is of the criss-crossing escalator tubes in the circular Terminal 1 building of Charles de Gaulle Airport outside Paris. Over this is superimposed a painting of a robot with a stylised atom for a brain.

 

Side one
1.  I Robot  (6:06)
2.  I Wouldn’t Want To Be Like You  (3:19)
3.  Some Other Time  (4:05)
4.  Breakdown  (3:50)
5.  Don’t Let It Show  (4:21)

Side two
1.  The Voice  (5:21)
2.  Nucleus  (3:35)
3.  Day After Day (The Show Must Go On)  (3:43)
4.  Total Eclipse  (3:05)
5.  Genesis Ch.1.V.32  (3:37)

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27
Jun

The Alan Parsons Project – Pyramid (1978) – Lp

The Alan Parsons Project were a British progressive rock band, active between 1975 and 1990, consisting of Alan Parsons and Eric Woolfson surrounded by a varying number of session musicians and some relatively consistent band members such as guitarist Ian Bairnson, bassist and vocalist David Paton, drummer Stuart Elliott, and vocalist Lenny Zakatek.

the alan parsons project - pyramid

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Artist:  The Alan Parsons Project
Title:  Pyramid
Year:  1978
Format:  LP
Label:  Arista Records
Catalog#  4C058-60792

Pyramid is the third album by progressive rock band The Alan Parsons Project, released in 1978. It is a concept album centred on the pyramids of Giza. At the time the album was conceived, interest in pyramid power and Tutankhamun was widespread in the US and the UK. Pyramid was nominated for the 1978 Grammy Award for Best Engineered Album, Non-Classical. Liner notes read “…this album seeks to amplify the haunting echoes of the past and explore the unsolved mysteries of the present. Pyramid…the last remaining wonder of the ancient world.”

The album also dabbles with new wave, a genre that was emerging in Britain around the time of the album’s recording. Many progressive and soft rock artists incorporated this style into their albums during the time spanning from late 1977 to 1979. In this album, the genre is mildly evident, through rhythm, in songs such as “Can’t Take it with You” and immensely so in others such as “Pyramania”.

Even with six different vocalists lending their talents to the album, Pyramid still remains an average bit of material from the Alan Parsons Project. Not only does the album’s theme evolve around the mystique of the pyramid, but it also touches on man’s fascination with superstition and its powers. The instrumental “Voyager” opens things up, and its provocative style sets the tone for the album’s supernatural mood. The bright-sounding “What Goes Up” is one of the highlights here, as is “The Eagle Will Rise Again,” sung by Colin Blunstone. The anxiety-ridden “Pyramania” enhances the album’s concept the best, accompanied by some excitable keyboard playing and a friendly middle. The lesson-learning “Can’t Take It with You” teaches that our souls are our most important asset, in typical Parsons-type charm. While not a stellar album, Pyramid completes the task of musically explaining its concept. Its short but slightly compelling nature grows after a few listens, but the album itself isn’t a necessity.

All songs written and composed by Alan Parsons and Eric Woolfson.

 

Side one
1.  Voyager (instrumental)  (2:24)
2.  What Goes Up…  (lead vocal: David Paton)  (3:31)
3.  The Eagle Will Rise Again  (lead vocal: Colin Blunstone)  (4:20)
4.  One More River  (lead vocal: Lenny Zakatek)  (4:15)
5.  Can’t Take It with You  (lead vocal: Dean Ford)  (5:06)

Side two
1.  In the Lap of the Gods  (instrumental)  (5:27)
2.  Pyramania  (lead vocal: Jack Harris)  (2:45)
3.  Hyper-Gamma-Spaces  (instrumental)  (4:19)
4.  Shadow of a Lonely Man (lead vocal: John Miles, additional vocals: Colin Blunstone)  (5:34)

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