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on 9 March 2013
The Essential Emerson Lake & Palmer is a 2CD compilation which contains the following tracks:
Disc 1:
(1) Fanfare for the Common Man (full length version from the 1977 album Works Volume 1)
(2) Still... You Turn Me On (from the 1973 album Brain Salad Surgery)
(3) Hoedown (from the 1972 album Trilogy)
(4) Black Moon (the version here is a single edit, as opposed to the full length version on the 1992 album Black Moon)
(5) Tarkus (from the 1971 album Tarkus)
(6) Jerusalem (from Brain Salad Surgery)
(7) Tiger in a Spotlight (from the 1977 album Works Volume 2)
(8) Better Days (from Black Moon)
(9) From the Beginning (from Trilogy)
(10) Knife-Edge (from Emerson Lake & Palmer, the band's self-titled debut album from 1970)
(11) Karn Evil 9: 1st Impression Part 1 (from Brain Salad Surgery)
(12) I Believe in Father Christmas (the version included here is the album version ELP did for Works Volume 2, rather than the other version Greg Lake released as a single)

Disc 2:
(1) Karn Evil 9: 1st Impression Part 2 (from Brain Salad Surgery)
(2) Nutrocker (from the 1971 live album Pictures at an Exhibition)
(3) Peter Gunn (from the 1979 live album Works Live)
(4) All I Want Is You (from the 1978 album Love Beach, in which the album didn't sell particularly well when first released)
(5) Brain Salad Surgery (from Works Volume 2)
(6) Take a Pebble (from Emerson Lake & Palmer)
(7) C'est La Vie (from Works Volume 1)
(8) Lucky Man (from Emerson Lake & Palmer)
(9) Affairs of the Heart (from Black Moon)
(10) Canario (from Love Beach)
(11) Pirates (from Works Volume 1)
(12) The Great Gates of Kiev (from Pictures at an Exhibition)
(13) Honky Tonk Train Blues (from Works Volume 2)
(14) The Enemy God Dances with the Black Spirits (from Works Volume 1)

Although this is a very good selection of songs for The Essential Emerson Lake & Palmer, I was very surprised that tracks like "Trilogy", "The Barbarian", "The Sheriff" and "Jeremy Bender" were not selected for this 2CD compilation. The first disc lasts around 76 minutes long and the second disc lasts nearly 74 minutes long, so I felt that one more track could have been included on each disc (I'm not complaining or anything like that, it's just what I felt Sony Music, who released this compilation, could have done if they wanted to or even if there was enough space on each disc to do so).

Overall, this compilation will be a crowdpleaser for people who are familiar with Emerson Lake & Palmer, and also for those who are new to their music. Highly recommended.
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VINE VOICEon 31 January 2011
Another ELP collection and another round of catalogue re-issues. However, the band are now represented by Sony so that should mean a much higher profile. The deal has already seen the first crop of re-issues get very favourable reviews in Uncut magazine. Amazing but true!

I wont go into the pros and cons of whats included in this compilation. Everyone has their own list of favourites. Suffice to say there is a good cross-section of material and I do like how its not chronologically mixed. Though splitting the 1st impression of Karn Evil 9 into 2 parts over both discs is a regressive step and harks back to how it was presented in the LP format.

For those who want to know. The discs have been mastered by Andy Pearce. I am not sure if these are new masters or taken form the recent US releases on Shout Factory, which I think were also mastered by Andy. He has done a good job here. They do sound fresh and vibrant. The packaging is fairly basic as its on Sony's Essential series. So no notes. But the whole thing is presented in the Super Jewel Case format so it does look a bit more classy than the standard jewel case.

It will be interesting to see how Sony present the catalogue. They do say "new packaging and liner notes", but no bonus tracks, which suits me to be honest. Maybe we are going to have at last a decent release for ELP's work. They deserve it and this compilation is a promising starting point. Here's hoping!
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TOP 1000 REVIEWERon 25 March 2015
I first came upon this collection many years ago. My original version was on cassette, so imagine my surprise to find it digitally remastered!

It's one of those albums where the full length of Fanfare For The Common Man is an absolute must to have in any record collection. Brilliant album, where all three musicians are given their own featured tracks, as well as the collective music, done by all three together. For instance, Greg Lake has I Believe In Father Christmas; Keith Emmerson is represented by his Honky Tonk Train Blues, and Carl Palmer has the final track on album 2. Lake is also represented by C'est La Vie. Everything else has the collective name, Emmerson, Lake and Palmer.

I'm so glad to have this album again. It's always been one of the best, in my estimation.
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on 5 July 2015
As soon as I pressed the "buy" button I regretted ordering this. I'm not much of an ELP fan. I just wanted this to round out my collection.
Two weeks later and I am so glad I didn't cancel my order. ELP actually wrote some decent songs! It's not all self indulgent noodling (although there is a bit that).
Not bad. Not bad at all.
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on 14 February 2016
Years ago I had brain salad surgery, now I'm retired I'm living my youth music wise again, this is a great introduction to ELP with a lot of well known tracks on it, and at the price you can't go wrong,
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on 26 May 2015
For Greg Lake it began with King Crimson, but later he formed E.L.P. A super group with progressive classic music. All their best you can find on these CD's. A great collection.
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on 24 May 2013
All in all not a bad compilation. Why, though, do they always ignore 'Benny The Bouncer' - which featured on the 'Brain Salad Surgery' album. Have they decided it is too violent ?.
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on 8 November 2012
Just really got it for the Fanfare to the Common Man
A fine collection of 1970s rock (Which probably took itself a bit too seriously)
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on 3 December 2013
Apart from a few hokey choices from the latter part of their career this is a pretty great collection of ELP's finest moments. Definitely If you only want an overview this is probably the one to go for.
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on 17 April 2016
Has all the expected tracks, however overloaded with live tracks so it seems like a cop out
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