MATT KELLY continues his epic new series with his review of a 1983 album by ELO that keeps on snatching defeat from the jaws of victory.
Electric Light Orchestra – Secret Messages (1983)
Seeking to mix the grandiose ELO of the past with present-day production, Jeff Lynne recorded a double-disc magnum opus named Secret Messages. But when he presented it to CBS records they were not impressed and refused to release it. Eventually, 34 minutes was cut and it saw the light of day as a single disc. It didn’t do much, being the first ELO album in yonks to not have a killer radio song.
But! In 2018 there came a 35th-anniversary edition, which in response to fan requests, restored Secret Messages to its 18-song, 76-minute long glory! Yay! And it’s terrible! CBS were right.
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