Tarkus (Remastered) Emerson, Lake & Palmer

Album info



Label: BMG

Genre: Rock

Subgenre: Classic Rock

Album including Album cover

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  • 1Tarkus20:38
  • 2Jeremy Bender01:47
  • 3Bitches Crystal03:58
  • 4The Only Way (Hymn)03:47
  • 5Infinite Space (Conclusion)03:22
  • 6A Time and a Place02:59
  • 7Are You Ready Eddy?02:10
  • Total Runtime38:41

Info for Tarkus (Remastered)

ELP was always more concerned with the fusion of rock and classical music than any of their prog-rock peers. Accordingly they fashioned the title suite (which occupies the album's entire first half) in the mold of a classical composition, each segment meant to represent either a character in or a part of the story. Visually depicted on the inner sleeve, that story is a sci-fi epic featuring strange creatures battling in an alien landscape, none of which matters if you ignore the thin concept and concentrate on the finely wrought music. Musically, the epic 'Tarkus' is classic ELP, organ and Moog synths blazing, Carl Palmer unleashing waves of tightly controlled polyrhythm and Greg Lake crooning authoritatively.

Things shift a bit in the second half. 'The Only Way' features Emerson's impressive church organ riffing and is structured in the style of a hymn. 'Bitches Crystal' is a propulsive piece full of invitingly angular keyboard work. Things close on a light note, with the '50s rock & roll-style (!) 'Are You Ready Eddy?' (directed at TARKUS engineer Eddie Offord).

„Emerson, Lake & Palmer's 1970 eponymous LP was only a rehearsal. It hit hard because of the novelty of the act (allegedly the first supergroup in rock history), but felt more like a collection of individual efforts and ideas than a collective work. All doubts were dissipated by the release of Tarkus in 1971. Side one of the original LP is occupied by the 21-minute title epic track, beating both Genesis' 'Supper's Ready' and Yes' 'Close to the Edge' by a year. Unlike the latter group's cut-and-paste technique to obtain long suites, 'Tarkus' is a thoroughly written, focused piece of music. It remains among the Top Ten classic tracks in progressive rock history. Because of the strength of side one, the material on the album's second half has been quickly forgotten -- with one good reason: it doesn't match the strength of its counterpart -- but 'Bitches Crystal' and 'A Time and a Place' make two good prog rock tracks, the latter being particularly rocking. 'Jeremy Bender' is the first in a series of honky tonk-spiced, Far-West-related songs. This one and the rock & roll closer 'Are You Ready Eddy?' are the only two tracks worth throwing away. Otherwise Tarkus makes a very solid album, especially to the ears of prog rock fans -- no Greg Lake acoustic ballads, no lengthy jazz interludes. More accomplished than the trio's first album, but not quite as polished as Brain Salad Surgery, Tarkus is nevertheless a must-have.“ (François Couture, AMG)

Keith Emerson, Hammond organ, St. Mark's Church organ, piano, celesta, synthesizer
Greg Lake, vocals, bass, electric and acoustic guitar
Carl Palmer, drums, percussion

Recorded January 1971 at Advision Studios in London
Engineered by Eddy Offord
Produced by Greg Lake

Digitally remastered

Emerson, Lake & Palmer
Considered by many to be one of rock’s original first super-groups, Emerson Lake & Palmer formed in England in 1970 consisting of Keith Emerson (keyboards), Greg Lake (bass guitar, vocals, guitar) and Carl Palmer (drums, percussion). The band created a brand new world of music, combining classical and symphonic rock fused with beautiful vocals. Their penchant for appropriating themes from classical music and the group’s more nuanced, textured approach to symphonic arrangements set ELP apart from their more bombastic guitar-based contemporaries of the time. This subtler and more sublime approach carries on today in the expansive atmospherics of Radiohead and Muse and also in the prog-influenced sphere of band’s like Porcupine Tree, Dream Theatre, Opeth and many others, making ELP one of the more relevant torchbearers of the progressive rock sound. Along with Yes, King Crimson, Genesis, and Rush, Emerson Lake and Palmer ushered in the Prog era and as one of the most commercially successful rock bands of the 1970’s having sold over 40 million albums. ELP’s dramatic flair, sincere passion, labyrinthine song structures, and symphony-worthy virtuosity proved that classical rockers could compete for arena-scale audiences as the band headlined stadium tours around the world.

This album contains no booklet.

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