Monday, 18 June 2018

Caught Live (3): The ELO Encounter @ Birmingham 16/06/18

The ELO Encounter returned to Birmingham to make their debut at The Crescent Theatre on Saturday night (16th June) and proceeded to prove their growing pedigree by overcoming first half sound difficulties to deliver another inspired selection of Jeff Lynne penned ELO classics (*plus one by Chuck Berry) in front of an appreciative "Down Home Town" audience.

Despite the vocals of Jack Rownes being somewhat muted at first, this gig demonstrated the progress that the band has made in "Steppin' Out" at larger venues whilst they continue dipping into the ELO songbook to bring the lesser known singles to the stage. Thirty songs were played including (quite aptly) all three UK singles taken from "Secret Messages" including the title track (perfectly in sync with the official video) and a nice rendition of "Four Little Diamonds". It was great to hear "Nightrider" and "Here Is The News" again as an expansive set covered the chart career of (the) Electric Light Orchestra all the way from "10538 Overture" to a welcome "Calling America". All the headline hits were on show too as you'd expect with a rousing "Roll Over Beethoven" and "Mr. Blue Sky" getting most onlookers up on their feet. Special mentions are due for Jasmine Ali (who managed to sing a peerless "Xanadu" with a sore throat) and last minute cellist Aaron Billson but this really was a team effort with guitarist Martin Donald, new drummer Dacre Peck, bassist Simon Rownes and son Jack combining to produce what was, in the end, a thoroughly enjoyable evening.
The ELO Encounter performed: "Standin' In The Rain" ~ "Evil Woman" ~ "Showdown" ~ "Strange Magic" ~ "Secret Messages" ~ "Prologue/Twilight" ~ "Here Is The News" ~ "Rock 'n' Roll Is King" ~ "10538 Overture" ~ "Livin' Thing" ~ "Can't Get It Out Of My Head" ~ "Ma Ma Ma Belle" ~ "Nightrider" ~ "Telephone Line" ~ "Don't Bring Me Down" +++ "Tightrope" ~ "Sweet Talkin' Woman" ~ "Four Little Diamonds" ~  "Do Ya" ~ "Rockaria!" ~ "Hold On Tight" ~ "Roll Over Beethoven" ~ "Turn To Stone" ~ "Calling America""The Diary Of Horace Wimp" ~ "Xanadu" ~  "All Over The World" ~ "Last Train To London" ~ "Shine A Little Love" ~ "Mr. Blue Sky"
The ELO Encounter were: Jack Rownes (Lead Vox/Keys) ~ Simon Rownes (Bass/Vox) ~ Martin Donald (Guitars) ~ Dacre Peck (Drums) ~ Jasmine Ali (Violin/Vox) ~ Aaron Billson (Cello)

Find out more about The ELO Encounter and their gig dates via their official sites thus:

elobeatlesforever (elobf) recommends The ELO Encounter to those enlightened folks who enjoy the music of ELOJeff LynneRoy WoodThe MoveThe Idle Race'Brum Beat'The Beatles and related artistes.

Until next "Time" in the ELO [and related] Universe ... KJS ... 18-June-2018

Saturday, 16 June 2018

Vinyl Story: ELO's AA Side Singles Revisited

Regular visitors to elobeatlesforever (elobf) will know that ELO's AA sided UK singles have been the subject of several articles including a look at the role reversal of "Ticket To the Moon" and "Here Is The News" (JET7018) when it was released in Holland (JET7081). We also noted that "21st Century Man" and "Twilight" (JET808) were marketed as an AA single per se in France not forgetting the pairing up of "Confusion" with "Last Train To London" (JET166) for the final single taken from "Discovery". Refresh your memory by reading these elobf articles thus:

REVERSE RELEASE: TIME'S THIRD SINGLE TWIST
VINYL STORY: ELO'S AA SIDE SINGLES

Since then, Yours Truly KJS has acquired a couple of other Electric Light Orchestra singles released in Europe from "Face The Music" that were AA sided by any other name. The first (*as highlighted by FTM Germany's Patrik Guttenbacher) is "Waterfall" backed by "Strange Magic" as issued in France (Jet/Polydor 2001653) and is, to my knowledge, the only time that "Waterfall" has been pressed on 7" vinyl. The other item is a Belgian (*not German) issued "Evil Woman" b/w "Nightrider" (Jet/Polydor 2001622) wherein, unfortunately, Jeff's surname is printed as "Lyn" bringing back memories of the gaffe on The Idle Race's "Impostors Of Life's Magazine" single.
The above table shows where the aforementioned singles are positioned in relation to the three UK singles taken from "Face The Music" (JETLP11) by Jet/Polydor.  One wonders if there are other examples out there that might constitute yet more ELO AA singles ...

Until next "Time" in the ELO [and related] Universe ... KJS ... 16-June-2018

Thursday, 14 June 2018

Return To Vinyl: Secret Messages 2LP Overview

We are now only 50 days away from the 2LP return to vinyl of ELO's seminal Summer 1983 album "Secret Messages" and Yours Truly KJS and elobeatlesforever (elobf) thought it would be worthwhile looking beyond the glaring omission of "Beatles Forever" (unless it's merged with "Letter From Spain" as a hidden track!) at the seven tracks that did not feature on the original 1LP release (JETLX527) but now will see the electric light of day (so to speak) on Friday 3rd August replete with a high quality digital download.

"Buildings Have Eyes" (4:04)
Originally released as 'B' side to "Secret Messages" (A3720; WA3720; JET7038) and also to be found on ELO's 1990 3CD career overview "Afterglow".

"Time After Time" (3:56)
A bonus track on the cassette issue of "Secret Messages" (JETCX527) and included on subsequent CD issues. Also a bonus track on the 12" single for "Rock 'n' Roll Is King" (TA3500).  

"Endless Lies" (3:35)
First time on vinyl. This original version was first issued on the "Secret Messages" expanded remaster in 2001. Later version was included on "Balance Of Power" (EPC26467) in 1986.

"After All" (0:41/2:23)
Not sure (yet) if we will see the shorter version that was intended for the original "Secret Messages" 2LP (JETDP402) as a prelude to "Hello My Old Friend". First released as 'B' side to "Rock 'n' Roll Is King" (A3500; TA3500; JET7034). Made its CD debut in the ELO 3CD compilation "Flashback" in 2000 and also included in the "Secret Messages" expanded remaster.

"Mandalay" (5:19)
First time on vinyl. Only previously found on "Afterglow".

 "No Way Out" (3:23)
First time on vinyl. Previously found on "Afterglow" and the expanded "Secret Messages" in 2001.

"Hello My Old Friend" (7:51/8:37)
First time on vinyl. Worth the admission price alone! Only previously found on "Afterglow".
ELOpinion: Secret Messages 2LP minus Beatles Forever
Secret Messages 2LP & ELO Singles Box Soon?

Until next "Time" in the ELO [and related] Universe ... KJS ... 14-June-2018

Tuesday, 12 June 2018

Recommended: Not In Narnia (Morganisation)

Former ELO member Dave Scott-Morgan and his current musical outlet Morganisation have added a fifth track to their forthcoming "Highland" EP and "Not In Narnia" - released earlier this week on Tuesday 12th June - also just happens to be their new single! It's a catchy, jolly ditty about Dave and Mandy's recent missionary sojourn in Scotland and their subsequent return "somewhere down the M6" to Birmingham.

"Not In Narnia" by Morganisation can currently be purchased in download format. The "Highland" EP is poised for release on Tuesday 26th June. You can find out more and/or buy "Not In Narnia" and/or pre-order the "Highland" EP by Morganisation via these links thus:


elobeatlesforever (elobf) recommends "Not In Narnia" by Morganisation to those enlightened folks who enjoy the music of ELOJeff LynneRoy WoodThe MoveThe Idle Race'Brum Beat'The Beatles and related artistes.

Until next "Time" in the ELO [and related] Universe ... KJS ... 12-June-2018

Sunday, 10 June 2018

Electric Light Orchestra - A Personal Collection (Dave Jones)

Over the years, Yours Truly KJS has been blessed to come across many fellow Electric Light Orchestra (ELO) fans and followers whilst elobeatlesforever (elobf) has continued to spread its wings globally. It has been my great pleasure to friend up with (and actually meet) Dave Jones, one of the most prolific and detailed collectors of all things ELO on the planet.

Should you therefore be perchance interested in having a look at what rarities reside in Dave's extensive ELO (and related artistes) vaults, the good news is that he is gradually posting his collection on his Facebook page at: Electric Light Orchestra - A Personal Collection and you can visit it via this link thus:

www.facebook.com/elopersonal

elobeatlesforever (elobf) recommends Electric Light Orchestra - A Personal Collection to those enlightened folks who enjoy the music of ELOJeff LynneRoy WoodThe MoveThe Idle Race'Brum Beat'The Beatles and related artistes.

Until next "Time" in the ELO [and related] Universe ... KJS ... 10-June-2018

Saturday, 9 June 2018

Recommended: Grey Goose Call Live EP (Quill)

Quill are getting busy! Hot on the heels of their new studio EP "Grey Goose Call" is another EP and this time it's the "Grey Goose Live EP" consisting of a total of six trax recorded live over the last year or so plus a bonus studio recording. All the songs are co-written by Bev Bevan, Joy Strachan-Brain and Tony Kelsey with the EP featuring (in part) both former and returning Quill members.

Review: Grey Goose Call EP (Quill)

Two versions of their energetic instrumental "Winter's Jig" are included plus live versions of three trax from the aforementioned "Grey Goose Live EP" and the generous bonus offering of "Say Goodbye". This is a release that compliments its predecessor perfectly and gives more teasing glimpses of the forthcoming new Quill studio album.

"Grey Goose Call Live" trax are: (1) "Winter's Jig"; (2) "Pretty Ribbons"; (3) "Elephant In The Room"; (4) "Grey Goose Call"; (5) "Winter's Jig" (Alternative Version)"; (6) "Say Goodbye"
"Grey Goose Call Live" by Quill was released digitally via Bandcamp on Wednesday 6th June and is available to listen to and/or buy alongside the "Grey Goose Call" EP as well as previous albums "Brush With The Moon" (2015) and "Privileged" (1999) via these links thus:

quillbanduk.bandcamp.com
www.quilluk.com   www.facebook.com/quilluk

elobeatlesforever (elobf) recommends "Grey Goose Call Live" by Quill to those enlightened folks who enjoy the music of ELOJeff LynneRoy WoodThe MoveThe Idle Race'Brum Beat'The Beatles and related artistes.

Until next "Time" in the ELO [and related] Universe ... KJS ... 09-June-2018

Thursday, 7 June 2018

Silver Clef Awards: Vote ELO for Best Live Act 2018!

Jeff Lynne's ELO are one of eleven acts in the running for Ticketmaster Best Live Act 2018 at this years Nordoff-Robbins Silver Clef Awards in London on Friday 6th July and fans of the ELO maestro and his acclaimed live band can help their heroes win in an online vote over the next few weeks! There are three (3) ways by which fans can vote and they are:

Tweet using hash tag #BLAJEFFLYNNESELO
&/or
Visit Ticketmaster at: www.ticketmaster.co.uk/best-live-act
&/or
Visit Nordoff-Robbins at: www.nordoff-robbins.org.uk/BLA18

You may recall that Jeff won the Icon Award at the Silver Clef Awards back in 2016 (read this elobf article). Wouldn't it be great to see Jeff Lynne and the Electric Light Orchestra (ELO) awarded another accolade just before they embark on their largest European and North American tour since 1982? If you are so minded, please consider joining Yours Truly KJS and elobeatlesforever (elobf) in voting for EJLO and spreading the word!

Until next "Time" in the ELO [and related] Universe ... KJS ... 07-June-2018

Tuesday, 5 June 2018

ELOpinion: Secret Messages 2LP minus Beatles Forever

Back in April, elobeatlesforever (elobf) hinted that a 2LP/2CD "Secret Messages" release, possibly without "Beatles Forever" was imminent in Summer 2018 so when the folks at Official Jeff Lynne confirmed it today (Tuesday 5th June), 35 years to the date when the original 1LP (JETLX527) came out in 1983, it came as no surprise to Yours Truly KJS that Friday 3rd August will finally see the issue of a "Secret Messages" double album (with digital download), albeit without a certain track.

"For the first time ever, ELO’s Secret Messages will be released as a double album on August 3rd. Listen as Jeff Lynne’s eclectic creation of self-written, self-produced songs come to life as originally conceived in 1983. This 2LP release adds six tracks to its running order, all with cutting-edge synthesizers as well as up-front guitar mastery. Pre-order here: https://lnk.to/SecretMessages"

elobf: Secret Messages 2LP & ELO Singles Box Soon?
www.amazon.co.uk/dp/B07CBLS7HL
www.amazon.com/dp/B07CBLS7HL

I said in this elobf article that "A 2LP "Secret Messages" without "Beatles Forever" would be the strangest of compromises" and I still hold that opinion. At the same time, it'll be great to see a formal release for the remainder of the set, especially "Hello My Old Friend". Some fans will be disappointed and others will doubtless be delighted. For me, it's a major missed opportunity even when coupled with that forthcoming ELO 7" singles boxed set, also soon to be revealed. The question now is whether my elobeatlesforever (elobf) mission is now complete ...

Until next "Time" in the ELO [and related] Universe ... KJS ... 05-June-2018

Sunday, 3 June 2018

Caught Live: Nick Heyward + Pugwash @ Birmingham 01/06/18

Nick Heyward has always been someone whom Yours Truly KJS would like to see in concert so when it was revealed that he would be touring with Pugwash maestro Thomas Walsh as special guest, a trip down a long black road to Birmingham's O2 Academy on Friday 1st June was always on the cards to see them share the proverbial bill.

Arriving on stage with an aura of love and peace, Nick Heyward and his wonderful band delivered an assured and inspired 90 minute set of songs from those early career Haircut 100 headliners from "Pelican West" through his very many solo hits (and an excellent cover of The Beatles' "Doctor Robert") to a sprinkling of songs from his most recent critically acclaimed 2017 long player "Woodland Echoes". Whether it be "Love Plus One", "On A Sunday", "Kite", "Whistle Down The Wind", "Who", "Perfect Sunday Sun" or "Baby Blue Sky" - the freshness and a confidence of Nick and company ensured an wonderful atmosphere and a gig that will long in the memory whilst reminding all that there is much more to this accomplished singer/songwriter than you realise.
The beauty of this tour is that the wonderfulness of Nick Heyward is preceded by the acoustic artistry of Thomas Walsh a.k.a. Pugwash. Almost three years to the day since elobeatlesforever (elobf) witnessed Pugwash playing intimately in Frome, it was amazing to see Dublin's finest translating his classy songbook into solo acoustic mode with songs including "The Perfect Summer" and "Without You" from new album "Silverlake" intermingled nicely with The Duckworth Lewis Method's "Mason On The Boundary" and the likes of "Fall Down" and (my fave) "It's Nice To be Nice". This gentleman and his music are worthy of a much larger stage and wider recognition. A slot supporting his hero in Jeff Lynne's ELO wouldn't do any harm ...
Find out more about the featured artistes via these links thus:

elobeatlesforever (elobf) recommends Nick Heyward and Pugwash to those enlightened folks who enjoy the music of ELOJeff LynneRoy WoodThe MoveThe Idle Race'Brum Beat'The Beatles and related artistes.

Until next "Time" in the ELO [and related] Universe ... KJS ... 03-June-2018

Saturday, 2 June 2018

Compilation Corner: ELO's Greatest Hits Volume Two

Whether it be their early years with Harvest/EMI or the whole span of their long career, it would be true to say that when it comes to compilations, ELO are more than well represented. From "Olé ELO" to "All Over The World", there have been not a few attempts to pull together worthy overviews of their extensive chart career. Here in the UK, following a stellar year in 1979 in which the Electric Light Orchestra reigned supreme both in terms of singles and albums with "Discovery" (#1) yielding a plethora of Top 10 singles, Don Arden and Jet Records seized the pre-Christmas opportunity to release "ELO's Greatest Hits" (JETLX525/JETCX525), featuring 11 tracks from "Showdown" to "Sweet Talkin' Woman" but none of the "Discovery" hits of that year. It stalled at #7, perhaps being seen by casual record buyers as missing the more recent hits despite the novelty of "Showdown" being present under licence from Harvest.
Fast forward 13 years to 1992 and a compilation that slipped under the radar of some ELO fans when Epic/Sony released "ELO's Greatest Volume Two" (4719562/4719564) in similar artwork, alternate colours and no personal message from Jeff Lynne. It was, perhaps, an attempt to complete the (then) story of the band with 16 tracks taken from "Out Of The Blue" (1), "Discovery" (5), "Xanadu" (3), "Time" (4), "Secret Messages" (2) and "Balance Of Power" (1) with "Xanadu" (surprisingly) missing. "ELO's Greatest Hits II" failed to trouble the charts at all, falling between charting compilations in 1989 (Very Best Of; Telstar; #23) and 1994 (Very Best Of; Dino; #4) whilst following Jeff Lynne's debut solo LP "Armchair Theatre" (#24; 1990) and "Electric Light Orchestra Part Two" (#34; 1991).

Despite its perceived commercial failure, Yours Truly KJS and elobeatlesforever (elobf) reckon that "ELO's Greatest Volume Two" should be nestled next to its predecessor as an essential element of any ELO collection.

Until next "Time" in the ELO [and related] Universe ... KJS ... 02-June-2018