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Thread: New music from Alan Parsons

  1. #26
    Quote Originally Posted by JKL2000 View Post
    As I recalled it, the "classic" APP albums had only a few vocalists per album, while this new one has, as it looks, a different vocalist for almost every song. But maybe that's how it's been since Parsons and Woolfson "separated."
    Is there a story behind "separated"?

    I was curious so...

    Tales of Mystery and Imagination - 5 vocalists
    I, Robot - 7 vocalists
    Pyramid - 6 vocalists
    Eve - 6 vocalists
    The Turn of a Friendly Card - 4
    Eye in the Sky - 6
    Ammonia Avenue - 4
    Vulture Culture - 5
    Stereotomy - 5
    Gaudi - 5
    Try Anything Once - 4
    On Air - 5
    The Time Machine - 7
    A Valid Path - 4 (Two-thirds of the album is instrumental)
    The Secret - 8

    For the most part, the same vocalists were used from 1980 to 1987.

  2. #27
    Quote Originally Posted by Scrotum Scissor View Post
    Absolutely everything the 'progressive rock' concept was all about - in a nutshell.

    (While Snarky Puppy kinda don't belong here)
    Snarky Puppy couldn't carry Mike + The Mechanics water bottle!

  3. #28
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    Quote Originally Posted by yamishogun View Post
    Try Anything Once (1993) - outstanding
    On Air (1996) - not as consistent but very good
    The Time Machine (1999) - it slowly grew on me and is also very good
    A Valid Path (2004) - ? just heard parts
    Pretty much feel the same about Alan Parsons releases. A Valid Path for me is a very good album with an almost 9 minute killer instrumental opener Return to Tunguska. It has 3 solos from David Gilmour. The third one reminds me a bit in the tone of the Fat Old Sun solo. Much of the album is instrumental. Parsons changes his sound by dabbling with techno and electronic to good effect throughout this album.

    I don't find anything in the single Miracle to get excited about, but many times what's released first is not what I really enjoy.

  4. #29
    Quote Originally Posted by ChrisXymphonia View Post
    Shows you haven't heard much APP albums to begin with cause this fits in with pretty much everything from the classic era. Just listen to the Eye In The Sky album or Turn Of A Friendly Card.

    I like the song but am not enamoured with the production of it. I hope it is due to Youtube compression but it just doesn't breathe in the same way the original APP songs do.
    FYI i own all Alan Parsons Project output and i strongly stand on my opinion.

  5. #30
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    Quote Originally Posted by ChrisXymphonia View Post
    Shows you haven't heard much APP albums to begin with cause this fits in with pretty much everything from the classic era. Just listen to the Eye In The Sky album or Turn Of A Friendly Card.
    Jason Mraz agrees with you, according to his quote from the press release:

    "'Eye In The Sky' is a song I have a very early memory of, strapped in the backseat of my mom's green Fiat, 1982. Alan Parsons is on the radio and I’m singing along, harmonizing. That sound of rich harmony over magical words would stick with me for my whole life and ultimately become what my own career is about, trying to solve universal quandaries through song craft." When Mraz heard "Miracle", he said, "I loved it. It sounded like a song right off of 'Eye In The Sky'. As if no time had passed, proving time might just be a construct after all".


    I gotta admit, I disagree with Jason here. I am a big fan of classic-era APP, especially Eye In The Sky and Turn Of A Friendly Card and this new song doesn't seem nearly as interesting or rich as anything on those albums. The new song to me is "ok" and definitely in the "Mike & the Mechanics" realm. I am hoping for more from this album.

  6. #31
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    Only the first song......maybe it will fall between 2 killer songs.....
    So much music....so little time....

  7. #32
    Jon Neudorf
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    Nice pop rock song. Has that Parsons 'feel'. Reminds me a little of the 'On Air' album.

    Jon

  8. #33
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    Quote Originally Posted by Scott Bails View Post
    The Project went away when Eric Woolfson passed away, though he and Parsons had gone their separate ways years earlier.

    I don't know their exact agreement, but the APP was basically Parsons and Woolfson, and a pretty consistent band around them, with varying vocalists, depending upon the song and album. But even some vocalists appeared on several different albums. Parsons dropped the "Project" moniker when he and Woolfson separated.
    Wolfson also wrote the majority of the lyrics on the APP albums too. When he left the "project" it became a different thing. The Parsons solo albums are good, espeically "Try Anything Once", but they don't rank up with most of the APP albums for me.

  9. #34
    Quote Originally Posted by Scrotum Scissor View Post
    Absolutely everything the 'progressive rock' concept was all about - in a nutshell.

    (While Snarky Puppy kinda don't belong here)


    Love it.

  10. #35
    Try Anything Once is one of the best Alan Parsons albums bar none. Not familiar with the others on that list.

  11. #36
    Quote Originally Posted by yamishogun View Post
    Snarky Puppy couldn't carry Mike + The Mechanics water bottle!
    Is that the one the Mechanics share with Mike Bolton's hair?
    "Improvisation is not an excuse for musical laziness" - Fred Frith
    "[...] things that we never dreamed of doing in Crimson or in any band that I've been in," - Tony Levin speaking of SGM

  12. #37
    Highly Evolved Orangutan JKL2000's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by yamishogun View Post
    Is there a story behind "separated"?

    I was curious so...

    Tales of Mystery and Imagination - 5 vocalists
    I, Robot - 7 vocalists
    Pyramid - 6 vocalists
    Eve - 6 vocalists
    The Turn of a Friendly Card - 4
    Eye in the Sky - 6
    Ammonia Avenue - 4
    Vulture Culture - 5
    Stereotomy - 5
    Gaudi - 5
    Try Anything Once - 4
    On Air - 5
    The Time Machine - 7
    A Valid Path - 4 (Two-thirds of the album is instrumental)
    The Secret - 8

    For the most part, the same vocalists were used from 1980 to 1987.
    I didn't realize or remember that he (they) used so many lead vocalists per album!

  13. #38
    Quote Originally Posted by JKL2000 View Post
    I didn't realize or remember that he (they) used so many lead vocalists per album!
    I had no idea either but remember being surprised On Air used five when I read the notes. Of course, Christopher Cross stood out.

  14. #39
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    Quote Originally Posted by JKL2000 View Post
    I didn't realize or remember that he (they) used so many lead vocalists per album!
    Yeah they sure did. But...some of them were "regulars". Lenny Zakatek, John Miles, Chris Rainbow and Colin Blunstone were all on multiple APP albums and became very familiar voices when listening to their catalog.

  15. #40
    Progdog ThomasKDye's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Dan Roth View Post
    Yeah they sure did. But...some of them were "regulars". Lenny Zakatek, John Miles, Chris Rainbow and Colin Blunstone were all on multiple APP albums and became very familiar voices when listening to their catalog.
    And what's really funny was the biggest hits were sung by Eric Woolfson himself.
    "Arf." -- Frank Zappa, "Beauty Knows No Pain" (live version)

  16. #41
    Studmuffin Scott Bails's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by yodathedog View Post
    Try Anything Once is one of the best Alan Parsons albums bar none.
    Agreed. Probably my fave. So damned good.

    Quote Originally Posted by JKL2000 View Post
    I didn't realize or remember that he (they) used so many lead vocalists per album!
    That was kind of their "thing."

    Quote Originally Posted by Dan Roth View Post
    Yeah they sure did. But...some of them were "regulars". Lenny Zakatek, John Miles, Chris Rainbow and Colin Blunstone were all on multiple APP albums and became very familiar voices when listening to their catalog.
    Yep. And each conveyed a different mood.

    Quote Originally Posted by ThomasKDye View Post
    And what's really funny was the biggest hits were sung by Eric Woolfson himself.
    He apparently never wanted to actually sing on the records, but he often provided guide vocals, which turned out to be the best version.
    Music isn't about chops, or even about talent - it's about sound and the way that sound communicates to people. Mike Keneally

  17. #42
    Member Birdy's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Scott Bails View Post
    Agreed. Probably my fave. So damned good.



    That was kind of their "thing."



    Yep. And each conveyed a different mood.



    He apparently never wanted to actually sing on the records, but he often provided guide vocals, which turned out to be the best version.
    He is after all The Raven That Refused To Sing...
    We are the grandchildren of apes, not angels
    But only we are gifted with the eyes to see
    On days without FEAR, when our heads are clear
    That angels, we could be
    (Marillion 2016)

  18. #43
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    Quote Originally Posted by Scott Bails View Post

    He apparently never wanted to actually sing on the records, but he often provided guide vocals, which turned out to be the best version.
    It's actually Parsons who wasn't a fan of Woolfson's voice, that most of the earlier songs were not song by him. But the fans liked it and he wrote 90% of the music and 100% of the lyrics, so he got a larger portion of the vocals as time went on.

  19. #44
    Quote Originally Posted by Tangram View Post
    But the fans liked it and he wrote 90% of the music and 100% of the lyrics,
    90%?

    When Parsons went solo, he wrote or co-wrote 3 songs for Try Anything Once (1993), he co-wrote 4 songs for On Air (1993), andone song for The Time Machine (1999). He co-wrote all songs on A Valid Path (2004) and wrote all of the songs on A Secret (2019).

  20. #45
    Member Top Cat's Avatar
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    Been a big Alan Parsons fan since Tales of Mystery and Imagination..Valid Path was a big disappointment to me, and I think his last best album was the one David Pack sang on.
    I listened to the samples on Amazon and although I can hear his songwriting returning to his roots, I heard nothing new that would make me want to purchase this one.
    Someone also mentioned the last live DVD, the one he did in Columbia and I thought it wasn't up to his standards at all, in fact I even joked to my wife, I wonder who he owed a favor to in Columbia in order to use the backing band and orchestra that he did..lol

    The DVD before that was pretty good, but the lead singer wore a sweater that made him look like a bumble bee, and it was very distracting during the songs to see those big black stripes as he ran across the stage.
    I'll just settle for the good old albums that still sound great to this very day, they don't sound dated to me at all.
    I wouldn't mind seeing him live again tho.
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  21. #46
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    Quote Originally Posted by Top Cat View Post
    The DVD before that was pretty good, but the lead singer wore a sweater that made him look like a bumble bee, and it was very distracting during the songs to see those big black stripes as he ran across the stage.
    I'll just settle for the good old albums that still sound great to this very day, they don't sound dated to me at all.
    I wouldn't mind seeing him live again tho.
    Steeler fan, trust me.
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  22. #47
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    Quote Originally Posted by yamishogun View Post
    90%?

    When Parsons went solo, he wrote or co-wrote 3 songs for Try Anything Once (1993), he co-wrote 4 songs for On Air (1993), andone song for The Time Machine (1999). He co-wrote all songs on A Valid Path (2004) and wrote all of the songs on A Secret (2019).
    On Freudiana, the only album that they did together with individual credits, has 18 tracks, all written by Woolfson except one instrumental by Parsons. I was surprised to read about the 90% of all music too, I will look for the quote.

  23. #48
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    Quote Originally Posted by Tangram View Post
    On Freudiana, the only album that they did together with individual credits, has 18 tracks, all written by Woolfson except one instrumental by Parsons. I was surprised to read about the 90% of all music too, I will look for the quote.
    In the liner notes for the Alan Parsons Project Anthology, Eric Woolfson explained the duo's working relationship thus: "Alan's on one side of the glass...giving his opinions... I'm sitting there at the piano struggling along with the musicians to try to come up with something he's satisfied with." Though the songs were all co-credited, Parsons observed his 'own separate contributions [are] usually in the form of instrumentals.' Woolfson reckoned to contribute 'about 90 percent of the music and 100 percent of the lyrics...but the edges are rather blurred.'


    Every now and then this geezers brain fires like it used to, I surmise I'm done for the month

  24. #49
    I love Alan Parsons and I'm glad he has a new release coming out, but I don't care for this song. It sounds like a bad eighties b side single. I'm not feeling the lead singer at all. Nice guitar solo. I hope the rest is better.

  25. #50
    Highly Evolved Orangutan JKL2000's Avatar
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    So the show last night in Tarrytown, NY was very good.The setlist (below) seems to be the same as other recent shows, but it's more or less what I wanted, and definitely not a disappointment. I thought the couple of new songs they played actually sounded pretty good.

    This was my only time seeing Parsons, and I actually thought most of the songs (if not all), worked better live than on album. Not that they don't work on the albums, but the band was very energetic and it all just had a more successful "rock" feeling than on the albums.

    There were rock cliche moments a plenty, and some pretty 80s-looking attire, so some of it looked a bit cheesy, but all the band members are undoubtedly talented. It was fun to have damn sax solos!

    One reason the songs seemed to work so well live was that it was somehow easier to focus on the lyrics. Two main solo vocalists, the bass player sang on one song (with incredibly high vocals - pretty impressive, really.

    It was a bit disappointing how little Parson himself did, but I guess it makes sense since he was the engineer in the studio making sure it all happened. He played some acoustic guitar that was a little hard to hear (there were a lot of guitars), and he triggered a lot of keyboard parts. BUT, one song that worked particularly well was "Don't Answer Me," which I was surprised to see that Alan himself sang - I didn't know that.

    Overall, a great night of rock music, which was definitely proggy. The funny thing is, I didn't even tell my wife what band I was seeing because I'm pretty sure she's never heard a single APP song. I'm not even sure she's ever heard that much of DSOTM, although it's usually the first album I play when setting up a stereo in a new house, etc. APP just isn't really a household name, despite the fact that there were several "hits" played that were great to hear again. Kudos to the audience, who didn't go totally nuts with their phones, and mainly stayed in their seats. It was definitely an enthusiastic crowd, but able to behave.

    I want to end this with a question, because I just don't know: I know Woolfson wrote most if not all of the lyrics for the APP songs, but who wrote the music? Both of them?

    Oh, and the setlist:

    One Note Symphony
    Damned If I Do
    Don't Answer Me
    Time
    Breakdown / The Raven
    I Wouldn't Want to Be Like You
    Psychobabble
    Miracle
    Luciferama
    Don't Let It Show
    Limelight
    Can't Take It With You
    As Lights Fall
    Standing on Higher Ground
    Old and Wise
    Prime Time
    Sirius
    Eye in the Sky

    Encore:
    (The System of) Dr. Tarr and Professor Fether
    Games People Play

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