"Welcome back my friends to the show that never ends!" was the motto of the prog power trio. Musical pomp full of virtuosity, made for eternity and with the claim to set a visual mark was his trademark. ELP were thus among the leading pioneers of progressive rock. But what role did they play, especially in the years 1970 to 1973, compared to the other genre founders King Crimson, Genesis, Yes and the art rockers of Pink Floyd? Together with drummer Carl Palmer, the last surviving member of the three, we take a journey through 50 years of ELP history, highlight the unique significance of this great band for rock music, review their most important albums, covers and special tracks and answer the question of what to expect from ELP in the future. Curtain up ..
On November 2nd, ELP keyboarder Keith Emerson would have celebrated his 75th birthday. For many progrock fans, the Brit, who put an end to his life on 11 March 2016, is regarded as the most brilliant representative of his guild in terms of playing technique. But Emerson also set standards in other areas: as a top-class showman, as a groundbreaking composer and as an ingenious mediator between classical music and rock. Critics liked to accuse him of gigantomania, while his artistic achievements were swept under the carpet. Therefore, it is time to pay tribute to the merits of this great musician once again
Emerson, Lake & Palmer are history. Still in summer 2016 Lake and Palmer gave interviews about whether and how ELP will continue after Emerson's death. Already at that time Carl Palmer said: "Of course I am happy that there are obviously still enough people [...] who are interested in our compositions. I'm very proud of that. But ELP as such has become pure nostalgia for me. I'd rather look to the future, have my own projects, especially the Carl Palmer Band."
And he continued: "Many of our fans thought Keith, Greg and I had been at odds for ages. In fact, there's never been a really dramatic fight between us. We were even in contact with each other somehow, at least sporadically, over all the decades we knew or knew each other. But we were never fat friends, not even in the seventies. But we made amazing music together. That's what connects us forever, or am I wrong?"
The 66-year-old drummer is still very agile. Carl Palmer wasn't only active with ELP either, but had already drummed with Atomic Rooster and The Crazy World Of Arthur Brown at the end of the sixties. He is currently flying between his own band Carl Palmer's ELP Legacy and Asia. Stuck in a traffic jam, the interview has to be postponed by a few days. Once on the phone, Palmer proves himself to be a British gentleman of the old school: he apologizes with impulsion, is polite and accommodating. And he's alive and kicking, his answers coming out of the gun.
eclipsed: After the death of Greg Lake you are the last living member of ELP. How would you describe the legacy of the band?
By 1973, Emerson, Lake & Palmer had become established superstars. The three respected musicians had earned their first spurs at a very young age with The Nice, King Crimson and Atomic Rooster. As a band their star had risen three years earlier at the Isle-Of-Wight-Festival. From then on, ELPs, which were preceded by their reputation as the first supergroup, were really hyped, even if they were extremely polarized. While they celebrated some as innovative pioneers, reconciling rock with jazz and classical music, others accused them of megalomania, blown pathos and exuberant bombardment. The debut album with the truly unrepresentative hit "Lucky Man", the records "Trilogy" and "Tarkus" as well as the daring and famous Mussorgski adaptation "Pictures At An Exhibition" were bulky, but all successful. They had increased the fame of the group, which in their own words was more a community of interests than a band.
Greg Lake is an outstanding figure in the history of progressive rock: the singer, bassist, guitarist, songwriter and producer from Poole in the South of England joined The Gods in the late 60s, then King Crimson, and finally Keith Emerson and Carl Palmer brought Emerson, Lake & Palmer to life. In his rare interviews he now gives the executor of the ELP inheritance. The 68-year-old tries to explain why the unique sounds of his old band are still relevant. Why the suicide of his creative partner deeply shocked him. And why ELP, in whatever constellation, are not only history through the death of Emerson.
eclipsed: Are you happy or are you even proud that the complete ELP back catalogue is coming onto the market?
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eclipsed is a music magazine based in Aschaffenburg and has been on the German market since 2000. It is aimed at friends of sophisticated rock music who want to go on a new acoustic voyage of discovery month after month.
eclipsed deals in detail with the rock greats of the 60s and 70s in the areas of art rock, prog, psychedelic, blues, classic, hard rock and much more as well as with the current scene in these areas.