viernes, 27 de mayo de 2011

Electric Light Orchestra

A group that I love. Sometimes excessive in his arrangements and production but has unforgettable songs. The creative genius was Jeff Lynne. They had a wide range of sounds since their instrumentation  was very versatile. This allowed them to jump from progressive rock to pop with a backgrounding classical overtone. This last was basically consisting on strings.
They were one of the most experimental bands during the 70´s and 80´s, specially the 70´s. But during the 80´s they produced some iconic songs that represents very well the sound of that decade. It´s also remarcable that during the 70´s they composed some songs that anticipated what was coming in the 80´s with all the symphonic rock movement and the influenced it had over tens of bands. Along with Genesis, this guys are probably the most important ones in this field.
The CD I have listened the most is ELO 2. I found it to be a very interesting record since they made a pretty much unique combination of styles there. You find progressive rock as the major one but the pop “fragance” appears now and then.
If you are interested in a compilation of the band's career, the dvd "ZOOM LIVE" (2002) would suit you. Highly recommended. In any case, any compilation you see out there is good because they were a great singles group. About a particular disc, I find it difficult for the reason that I gave above. But if I have to choose, I recommend "A New World Record" and "Face the Music”, besides ELO 2.
Some videos of their hits:
 Roll over Beethoven

Hold on tight

Last train to London

Band members:
It´s hard to say which were “the band members” since they had people coming in and out from the band all the time and not just a sessionist. Even Lynn didn´t take part during the 80´s I think. Of course we can distinguish some of them as more permanent members. These are:
Jeff Lynne – vocals, guitars, bass guitar, keyboards, drums, cello, producer, songwriter, composer, arranger (1970–1983, 1985–1986, 2000–01)
Bev Bevan – drums, percussion, vocals (1970–1983, 1985–1986)
Richard Tandy – keyboards, synthesizers, bass guitar, guitar, backing vocals, arranger (1972–1983, 1985–1986, 2000–01)
Louis Clark – orchestra arranger, conductor (1974–1980, 1983)
Kelly Groucutt – bass guitar, vocals (1975–1983)
Mik Kaminski – violin (1973–1979, 1981–1983, 1986)
Hugh McDowell – cello (1972, 1973–1979)

Other members were:
Roy Wood – vocals, guitar, bass guitar, cello, clarinet, bassoon, oboe, drums, recorder, producer, songwriter, arranger (1970–1972)
Melvyn Gale – cello (1975–1979)
Mike Edwards – cello (1972–1974)
Mike de Albuquerque – bass guitar, vocals (1972–1974)
Wilfred Gibson – violin (1972–1973)
Colin Walker – cello (1972–1973)
Bill Hunt – keyboards, French horn, hunting horn (1970–1972)
Steve Woolam – violin (1970–1971)

1971- The Electric Light Orchestra
1973 - ELO 2
1973 - On the Third Day
1974 - Eldorado, A Symphony
1975 - Face the Music
1976 - A New World Record
1978 - Out of the Blue
1979 - Discovery
1980 - Xanadu
1981 - Time
1983 - Secret Messages
1986 - Balance of Power
2001 - Zoom

Wikipedia says:
Electric Light Orchestra (ELO) were a British rock group from Birmingham, who released eleven studio albums between 1971 and 1986 and another album in 2001. ELO were formed to accommodate Roy Wood and Jeff Lynne's desire to create modern rock and pop songs with classical overtones. After Wood's departure following the band's debut record, Lynne wrote and arranged all of the group's original compositions and produced every album.

Despite early singles success in the UK the band were initially more successful in the United States, billed as "The English guys with the big fiddles". They soon gained a cult following despite lukewarm reviews back in their native United Kingdom. By the mid-1970s, they had become one of the biggest selling bands in music. From 1972 to 1986, ELO accumulated 27 Top 40 hit singles in both the UK and the US. The group also scored 20 Top 20 U.K. hit singles, as well as 19 Top 20 hit singles in the U.S. Billboard charts. The band also holds the record for having the most Billboard Hot 100 Top 40 hits of any band in US chart history without ever having a number one single.

ELO collected 19 CRIA, 21 RIAA and 38 BPI awards, and sold over 50 million records.

9 comentarios:

  1. It's been a long, long time since I've heard anything from ELO. This was a nice little read. Thanks for the info. I'm just going to have to Youtube "Wild West Hero" again.

  2. Thanks for all the great information on a great composer. I always enjoy everything from ELO!!

  3. Really nice songs, this is seriously underestimated music nowadays.

  4. I love Hold On Tight.. great stuff