1001 Albums You Must Die Before You Hear – ELO Part 2’s Moment Of Truth


1001 Albums You Must Die Before You Hear
#20: Electric Light Orchestra Part 2- Moment Of Truth (1994)

MATT KELLY has his sights on a record made by most of ELO (but minus Jeff Lynn) and he’s in a vicious mood. What a clunker!

More like Electric Orchestra Lite amirite? Or Rejected Shite Orchestra if we really want to be honest.

Because wow, you need to hear this album – not because it’s good, but because it’s some of the corniest stuff I’ve ever heard IN MY LIFE, reaching jaw-dropping levels of cheesiness to the point that I was actually exclaiming, out loud, “Fuck this is terrible!!!” and the like.

After Kelly Groucutt and Mik Kaminski’s own ELO spin-off failed to go anywhere, they joined forces with Bev Bevans’ relatively successful ELO Part Two because now they could advertise having three classic members of the band. Yet somehow the album they recorded together is even further away from Jeff Lynne’s genius.

It’s sad, because I really quite liked the first record from the Lynne-free ELO. And this starts well, with an epic, fully orchestral introduction, the decent, slightly heavy rocker ‘Breaking Down The Walls’ and then the really rather excellent ‘Power Of A Million Lights’. A triumph of sumptuous AOR power balladry, Eric Troyer’s excellent vocal and a nuanced, emotive track make this a winner.

But after that. Oh boy. The album swan dives in spectacular fashion, crashing down into the most dreadful, histrionic, OTT cheese with some really awful lyrics as the poo-flavoured icing on top.

‘One More Tomorrow’ is laugh out loud funny, an overwrought love power ballad that would make Michael Bolton blush. Then the band gives us their woeful take on ’90s alternative rock with ‘Don’t Wanna’, which is as clueless as you might imagine, before the album gets SERIOUSLY bad.

Back to back in ‘Voices’ and ‘The Fox’, we find two titanically terrible songs, which throw every clunky cliche in the book at the listener in such rapid succession it’s overwhelming.

The godawful ‘Love Or Money’, which Bryan Adams would turn down for being too safe, keeps the river of shit flowing before we are treated to the band getting sexy with the ZZ Top-like ‘Whiskey Girls’ which is even worse than you’d imagine.

And the album closes with me switching it off at this point because fuck this record. Download ‘Power Of A Million Lights’ and edit the track information so it displays as a non-album single because this record is a stain on the ELO name.

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Matthew Kelly is the most important person in the music industry – the type of obsessive nerd without whom it would have no reason to produce box sets and nine-hour long documentaries.

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