Title - 'Once Upon A Time In South America'
Artist - ELP
For those not in the know, although that would shock me Emerson, Lake & Palmer (ELP) were an English progressive rock supergroup formed in London in 1970. The band consisted of keyboardist Keith Emerson, singer, bassist, and producer Greg Lake, and drummer and percussionist Carl Palmer.
With nine RIAA-certified gold record albums in the US, and an estimated 48 million records sold worldwide, they were one of the most popular and commercially successful progressive rock bands in the 1970s. With a musical sound including adaptations of classical music with jazz and symphonic rock elements, dominated by Emerson's flamboyant use of the Hammond organ, Moog synthesizer, and piano (although Lake wrote several acoustic songs for the group), they recorded hit after hit for the radio listeners.
Culled from concerts in Chile, Brazil and Argentina in 1993 and 1997, the just released ELP - Once Upon A Time In South America 4-CD digi-pak is truly an essential collection to the catalog of this progressive rock supergroup. Featuring versions of their hits from their forty five year career, including 'Lucky Man', 'From The Beginning', 'Hoedown', 'Knife Edge' and 'Pictures at an Exhibition', the musical history garnered by the listener over the course of these four discs is immeasurable.
CD1: April 1st, 1993 (71:33)
1. 'Introduction Fanfare' (0:46)
2. 'Tarkus' (9:10)
3. 'Knife Edge' (5:32)
4. 'Paper Blood' (4:42)
5. 'Black Moon' (6:33)
6. 'Close To Home' (3:36)
7. 'Creole Dance' (5:15)
8. 'Still You Turn Me On' (3:52)
9. 'C'Est La Vie' (5:04)
10. 'Lucky Man' (5:33)
11. 'Honky Tonk Woman' (4:02)
12. 'Touch And Go' (3:10)
13. 'Pirates' (14:18)
CD2: April 1st, 1993 / April 5th, 1993 (76:30)
1. 'Hoedown' (3:07)
2. 'Pictures At An Exhibition' (23:32)
3. 'Fanfare For The Common Man / America / Rondo' (17:56)
4. 'Introductory Fanfare' (0:24)
5. 'Tarkus' (9:20)
6. 'Knife Edge' (5:36)
7. 'Paper Blood' (4:15)
8. 'Black Moon' (6:57)
9. 'Emerson Piano Solo' (5:23)
CD3: April 5th, 1993 (70:46)
1. 'Creole Dance' (6:34)
2. 'From The Beginning' (3:03)
3. 'C'Est La Vie' (5:29)
4. 'Lucky Man' (5:06)
5. 'Honky Tonk Train Blues' (4:28)
6. 'Touch And Go' (3:19)
7. 'Pirates' (14:35)
8. 'Hoedown' (3:09)
9. 'Pictures At An Exhibition' (1:52)
10. 'Instrumental Jam' (23:11)
CD4: April 5th, 1993 / August 15th, 1997 (67:00)
1. 'Fanfare For The Common Man / America / Rondo' (16:19)
2. 'Karn Evil 9: First Impression (Part Two)' (5:00)
3. 'Hoedown' (4:36)
4. 'Touch And Go' (3:58)
5. 'From The Beginning' (4:02)
6. 'Knife Edge' (6:19)
7. 'Lucky Man' (4:38)
8. 'Tarkus' (8:27)
9. 'Pictures At An Exhibition' (10:37)
10. '21st Century Schizoid Man' (1:45)
11. 'America' (1:19)
With a running time of an incredible 285:49, ELP - Once Upon A Time In South America is chock full of prog rock goodness that we've all grown (up on) to love and cherish. From the stirring opening 'Introduction Fanfare' (at just 46 seconds) that leads seamlessly into the near-ten minutes long opus 'Tarkus', this is something to behold from the off.
The first disc is caught live from their show on April 1st, 1993, and that holds for the first two songs into the second disc. Then it becomes another nights live experience, this one from April 5th, 1993, which itself runs through the remainder of that disc, for the entire third disc, and for the first song on the fourth disc. From then on the fourth disc is actually live from April 15th, 1997, so a big jump there - although, in truth, not that musically noticeable.
As you would expect from such an undertaking of a collection, there are a slew of repeats with regard their hits of the time, but that's no big deal to any of us fans. Indeed, for my money, this is an awesome collection of live shows from South America, ones I had never heard before, and so for that alone I could listen to this set over and over.
I should add that simply calling it prog(ressive) rock suggests that it's more rock than prog, but over the course of these four discs it really isn't one genre such as that. The music is classified as rock, but it's closer to classical or jazz for many of their songs. The only way to label it correctly is to call it fusion, in my book. Oh, and as for drummer Carl Palmer, well, he would be ranked in the Top 5 of the greatest trap set players to ever walk the Earth, in my book!
'Once Upon A Time In South America' 4CD Purchase Link
ELP @ Facebook