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Articles Home » 1981 Articles » Lake, Greg - 1981 Greg Lake
Lake, Greg - 1981 Greg Lake

ARTIST: Lake, Greg
ALBUM: Greg Lake
LABEL: Chrysalis
YEAR: 1981
CD REISSUE: 2003, Zoom Club Records, ZCRCD-42 * 2011, Rock Candy Records, CANDY091
SPONSOR: Rock Candy Records


LINEUP: Greg Lake - guitar, vocals * Gary Moore - guitar * Tristian Margetts - bass * Tommy Eyre - keyboards * Ted McKenna - drums

Guest Musicians: Steve Lukather, Dean Parks, W. G. 'Snuffy' Walden - guitar * Greg Mathieson, Bill Cuomo - keyboards * Michael Giles, Jeff Porcaro, Jode Leigh - drums * David Hungate - bass * Willie Cochrane, David Milner - pipe * Clarence Clemons - saxophone

TRACK LISTING: 01 Nuclear Attack * 02 Love You Too Much * 03 It Hurts * 04 Black And Blue * 05 Retribution Drive * 06 Long Goodbye * 07 The Lie * 08 Someone * 09 Let Me Love You Once Before You Go * 10 For Those Who Dare


During the 1979-1983 period, I had a love affair with the guitar playing style of Gary Moore. Nearly everything he played on during that timeframe, I picked up. One of the lesser known LP's he participated on was Greg Lake's 1981 debut LP. After the breakup of Emerson Lake And Palmer in 1979, Greg Lake opted for a solo career, signing with Chrysalis, Greg recorded this effort in Los Angeles, and it features a hybrid of UK and US musicians. Half of Toto appear on the album, as do other L.A session greats such as Dean Parks, Greg Mathieson and Bill Cuomo. It's a mild affair, and a bit like Goldilocks and Three Bears, it's not too hot nor too cold.

The Songs
Though The Three Bears might veer on the side of coolness, the opener 'Nuclear Attack' is positively iron-ore melting stuff, with Gary Moore scorching his way through the smelter like a madman. The lyrical content is typical of Ronnie 'RayGun' Reagan and the Russians, though the sentiment was a little bit off beam once Mikhail Gorbachev, Perestroika and the fall of the Berlin Wall become part of world history. Good on Mikhail - one of my heroes! The next track 'Love You Too Much' dips into the middle ground, likeable in a British way, though I can hear the L.A session men filtering through. The ballad 'It Hurts' has been a favourite of mine for years, though for all the wrong reasons (call it broken relationship blues), again Gary Moore shines through with a stunning guitar solo. 'Black And Blue' sounds like Moody Blues doing AOR, whereas 'Retribution Drive' has a little bit more energy and fire. Moore is doing his best to turn the song on its head. I like the intense surge of 'Long Goodbye' sort of like Alan Parsons Project dipping their toes in a hybrid prog/blues spa pool! 'The Lie' moves in a traditional British direction, as does 'Someone', with its quirky 70's pop like references. The other killer ballad here is 'Let Me Love You Once Before You Go', another track I used to play over and over. The song is all about wanting and desire, without actually landing the prize. How many of us know that feeling? lol! The album ends with the cultural wonder of 'For Those Who Dare' with Scottish influences seeping through, regimented percussion, bagpipes (or synthesized versions thereof).

In Summary
There's a certain irony with this album. Prog fans typically hate this record because it's not prog enough and there's too much of Gary Moore's HM playing. I say to zealot like prog fans: ' a big phooey!' get over it! Whereas AOR fans like the album despite its shortcomings in a number of areas. Lake of course would release one more album in this era: 1983's 'Manoeuvres', before getting the call to replace John Wetton in Asia, appearing on their 1983 live Japanese broadcast 'Asia Live In Asia'. The Asia hookup was only temporary though, as Wetton was back onboard for their 1985 masterpiece 'Astra'. For what it's worth, both 'Greg Lake' and 'Manoeuvres' should make nice companion pieces for your CD collection, both well worth the investigation for the closet AOR collector. In fact, after writing this, I think I might try and pick this up as a Japanese copy, for which I see a few copies available on Ebay, though the search has been made easier because as of 2011 both albums are being reissued by Rock Candy Records. Damn good timing if you ask me...

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#1 | Eric on February 17 2008 14:09:45
Indifferent indeed. While I didn't expect Greg Lake to give us ELP or King Crimson in 1981, I expected something a bit more in line with Phil Collin's debut or even Peter Gabriel's solo stuff- still progressive but with an eye on pop. This album is none of that and a mess to boot.
#2 | gdazegod on February 17 2008 15:39:06
In saying that though Eric, there are three tracks on this album which are absolute winners ('Nuclear Attack', 'It Hurts', and 'Let Me Love You Once Before You Go'). If Greg had made an album similar to John Wetton's 'Battle Lines;, it could've been a different story altogether.
#3 | Eric on February 17 2008 17:59:53
Agree with Nuclear Attack' the better of the three. Still, I just can't understand where he was going with this record...
#4 | richardb on July 23 2010 22:09:24
I always thought this album was rather bland even for my mellow tastes. Incidentally IMHO the version of "Nuclear attack" put out by "Gary Moore and Friends" knocks proverbial spots of Greg Lake's version.
thumbs down

Richard B
#5 | Eric on July 23 2010 22:22:06
Lake/ Moore did a UK tour together around this time as well. Voyager opened the shows and Paul French told me it was a terrific pairing and a lot of fun. Lake did a short solo tour of the U.S. supporting the record and I believe there was a King B. CD released from the period a few years ago. Maybe?
#6 | gdazegod on January 24 2011 05:00:39
With 'Manoeuvres' getting a reissue as well, expect to see a review of that album in the coming weeks.
#7 | reyno-roxx on January 24 2011 22:34:18
Dave Ling really rates that King Biscuit live CD. Will have to track one down.
#8 | gdazegod on February 02 2011 03:05:23
I will put the KB Live album up as a fileshare very shortly..
#9 | gdazegod on February 12 2011 12:44:32
YouTube Video:
#10 | gdazegod on October 04 2013 16:36:10
YouTube Video:
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