- Audio CD (12 May 1992)
- Number of Discs: 1
- Format: CD
- Label: Commercial Marketing
- ASIN: B000001FN3
- Other Editions: Audio CD | Audio Cassette | Vinyl | Blu-ray | MP3 Download
- Average Customer Review: 4.7 out of 5 stars See all reviews (37 customer reviews)
- Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 23,005 in Music (See Top 100 in Music)
Tales Of Mystery And Imagination - Edgar Allan Poe CD
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Weaving synths, glockenspiel and guitar with vocoder, boys choir and even Orson Welles narration, producer Parsons brilliantly interpreted the chilling works of Edgar Allan Poe on this 1976 LP. The Project's first release, it went Top 40 and notched hits with (The System of) Doctor Tarr and Professor Fether and The Raven ; here's the 1976 album and 1987 remix plus demos, unreleased "experiments" and more bonus material!
As unlikely as the idea seems today to use the suspense-filled stories of Edgar Allan Poe as the basis for an album of rock tunes, listeners in the 1970s--who were barraged with such high-flown concepts during the heyday of prog-rock--turned the record into a major hit. The Project actually scored a US Top 40 hit with "(The System of) Doctor Tarr and Professor Feather". The 1987 CD version of "ToMaI" differs somewhat from the original vinyl: Parsons dropped in synthesizer parts to modernize the album, and added an opening recitation by Orson Welles. But the integrity of the original is maintained well enough, and the album remains a classic excuse to dim the lights, pour a glass of sherry (amontillado, natch), and break out the headphones. --Daniel Durchholz
Top Customer Reviews
The album starts with an instrumental based on the poem "Dream Within a Dream," and the brief Poe quote from 1846's "Marginalia" (where "Dream Within a Dream" was also published), spoken by Orson Welles and added only on 1987's remastered CD. In many ways, this quote sets the theme for the entire album, and for Poe's work in general: "There is ... a class of fancies of exquisite delicacy which are not thoughts ... These fancies arise in the soul, alas how rarely ... at those weird points of time, where the confines of the waking world blend with the world of dreams. ...Read more ›
I find the addition of synth and guitars irritating as some of the best musical passages are obscured by unnecessary additional instruments.
The addition of Orson Wells to the start of "A Dream Within a Dream" is simply scandalous! The opening of this track was a lovely build up to the beautiful craftsmanship that is the rest of the album, instead this is masked by a narrative.
Parsons formed the project on the back of his work with Pink Floyd and the quality of the production is testimony to his pedigree.
For me, the original recording does not need any enhancement it stands the test of time as a classic. This version remains excellent and it is a delight to hear the clarity but I would prefer to be listening to a CD of the original.
There is a real danger that if this original version had been released on CD as-is, "we'd" all be complaining about the sound [...]. It would appear that Mr Parsons decided to redo the mix [...] for CD...
There's no doubt at all of the superior "layering" of the sounds in this version. The drums have been mixed back in perspective to give everything else room to breathe. A couple of parts have been re recorded to remove the "analogue" hiss and distortion. The orchestration on "side 2" now has a better perspective to my ears - one can hear the musicians well spread out in front of you, rather than all clumped together in a sometimes muddy puddle.... The shame for me was the timing relationship between the thunder and door pounding on 'Usher has been changed. Still, I've lived with this mix now for twenty years or so...
The thing is, the mastering techniques for "vintage" seventies multi track recordings have improved so much in recent times that a good overall job could probably now be done with the original...
The album as it currently stands MORE than deserves 5 stars.Read more ›
This album is a must listen, whether you're fans of the genre or not, but I definitely recommend it to be heard in one listen. The best of the Alan Parson's collection as far as I am concerned although I'm sure plenty would disagree.
Nothing short of spectacular!
Most Recent Customer Reviews
I first heard this album on Radio Caroline when it came out. Forty years later I still love it (despite the remixing in 1987), and play it regularly. Read morePublished 26 days ago by Basify
On this CD "Tales Of Mystery And Imagination "the music revolves around Edgar Allan Poe, the Album is a real classic,perhaps one of his best,There are lots of Orchestration... Read morePublished 5 months ago by WOODY UK
Prompted by nostalgia but still sounds good and sticks in your brain.Guaranteed you'll be humming, " What goes up , must come down", after one listen.Published 20 months ago by Mr. D. TAYLOR