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Eloy - Visionary CD (album) cover




Psychedelic/Space Rock

3.29 | 243 ratings

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Special Collaborator
Symphonic Team
4 stars Time To Turn, part 2

11 years after the previous Ocean 2, Eloy returned once more with this album. While Ocean 2 obviously was a celebration of the band's 1977 album Ocean, Visionary instead harks back to 1982's excellent Time To Turn album. Like on Time To Turn, which is my favourite Eloy album, we find here a set of symphonic and spacey songs with strong melodies. The presence of acoustic guitars and also renaissance flute on a couple of tracks brings a slight but very appealing folky touch to the proceedings. I'm reminded of recent Nektar and 90's Pink Floyd but it is still 100% Eloy.

The German accent of vocalist Frank Bornemann, which I often found troubling on the band's 70's albums, has never been as unobtrusive as it is here. He sounds more confident than ever singing in English. His voice is sometimes treated with tasteful effects in the appropriate places and often embellished by female backing vocals it creates a convincing vocal drive. Again like Time To Turn, the sound here is rather keyboard dominated, but there is a well-balanced mix of electric and acoustic guitars, bass, drums and percussion and discrete orchestral sounds. The sonic quality of the recording is very high. You can tell that a lot of work went into the production with its high attention to detail.

The Challenge is subtitled Time To Turn, part 2, but it is really a new version of the Time To Turn title track. Both versions are very good. Summernight Symphony is, as its title implies, the most symphonic track of the album. The Secret is divided into two parts with the second part called Mystery. Once again like the Time To Turn album, Visionary closes with an acoustic number. This time with a short one called Thoughts that rounds off the album well. Another positive aspect of Visionary is its moderate length. While many bands today exploit the CD format to its full potential, making albums with running times well over an hour. Eloy wisely avoids overdoing it and Visionary clocks in at just over 40 minutes.

Overall, this makes for a reasonably varied album and there is not one weak moment to speak of. Given the melodic and somewhat laid-back nature of the music and the fact that it is largely vocally driven, this album might not blow all Prog fans away. But the band sounds very confident here and they have produced a very likable and appealing album. It is indeed hard to complain about Visionary.

In my opinion, Visionary is a great come-back and Eloy's best achievement since Time To Turn

SouthSideoftheSky | 4/5 |


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