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Articles Home » 1984 Articles » Eloy - 1984 Metromania
Eloy - 1984 Metromania

ALBUM: Metromania
LABEL: Harvest, EMI Electrola
SERIAL: 1C 066 14 6945 1
YEAR: 1984
CD REISSUE: 1991, EMI (Germany), CDP 538-7 92502 2 * 2005, EMI (Euro), 7243 5 63779 2 9


LINEUP: Frank Bornemann - vocals, guitars * Klaus-Peter Matziol - vocals, bass * Hannes Arkona - guitars, keyboards, percussion * Hannes Folberth - keyboards * Fritz Randow - drums, percussion

Guests: Jane James, Kalle B”sel, Michael Flechsig*, Monika, Rainer Przywara*, Romy Singh, Sabine Matziol, Susanne - backing vocals

TRACK LISTING: 01 Escape To The Heights * 02 Seeds Of Creation * 03 All Life Is One * 04 The Stranger * 05 Follow The Light * 06 Nightriders * 07 Metromania


1984 saw a change of fortunes and direction for Germany's prog legends Eloy. After a handful of classic prog LP's, the band saw fit to move their music in a completely different way. 'Metromania' sees the band moving quite some distance from their identifiable brand of space rock/prog. The mid 80's rock music industry had an impact on many bands. Prog bands chasing commercial success, and their sound changing in accordance with those demands. Think Yes, Saga, Camel, Genesis and a whole host of others. Eloy too were in this situation. While hard-line prog fans derided Bornemann for taking Eloy in a new direction, other genre's welcomed the change. In this case, Eloy couldn't win.

The Songs
Eloy bought in a couple of songwriters to assist. Martine Ryan and Andrew Ward helped pen all (but one) of the songs on the album, and there are some obvious differences from prior albums. The instrumentation has a colder sound, there are vocoders at work, a la 'All Life Is One', which is surely different for Eloy. The kick-off track 'Escape To The Heights' lets everyone know Eloy's new sound, whether they like it or not. While progsters will probably hate it, AOR fans will embrace it full on. I know I did! 'Seeds Of Creation' slows the tempo, but the synths are swirling around in a melodic maelstrom. I liked the shifting soundscape of 'The Stranger', which surely is Saga reimagined in 1984! 'Follow The Light' is the album's tour de force, and at 9 minutes plus, makes a severe dent in 'Metromania's running time. The first two minutes are dominated by wistful keyboard pasages, the song coming to life after that. Eloy build the energy, with female vocals and strong synth parts thereafter. 'Nightriders' displays the harder side of Eloy, with Bornemann turning up all the switches on guitar, including the big metallic solo at the three minute mark. The title track 'Metromania' could easily be an Alan Parsons Project tune, placed on an album like 'Pyramid' or 'Turn Of A Friendly Card'.

In Summary
I have to say, I'm ambivalent about all this genre changing in relation to Eloy. I appreciate the band in all that they do, and I enjoyed 'Metromania' for what it is, nothing more nothing less. Sure, there were nods to Saga, Genesis and Alan Parsons Project.. all bands revered here at GDM, so all good in that department. However, this would be the last Eloy album to feature this line-up, as all of the personnel except Bornemann would depart. By 1988, Bornemann had resurrected the Eloy name, but the band were now down to a trio essentially, and from the 'Ra' album onward, would periodically release albums right up until the current day. From a sonic listening experience, Eloy are a great band to listen to, their remastered CD's easily obtainable in the marketplace.

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#1 | gdazegod on April 07 2014 06:05:47
Possibly might be looking at doing 'Colours' and 'Silent Cries And Mighty Echoes' as well.
#2 | AOR Lee on April 11 2014 05:35:18
Look forward to reading those George, I may add 1994's Tides Return Forever very soon computer work
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