AL8-8193 The Best of The Alan Parsons Project
Produced by Alan Parsons
Released on October 1983
US CHART POSITION #53
Find it at GEMM
AL8-8193 cover
[high resolution photo]
 

F ront-loaded with goodies, left sagging listlessly at the end, The Best of The Alan Parsons Project isn’t exactly a cavalcade of hits. Still (and Project-iles can cover their ears for this part) I don’t think the band had twelve great songs in their career to choose from. There’s no denying that the opening quartet of songs is classic Parsons, inextricably connected to the progressive pop of the late ‘70s and early ‘80s but appreciable today nonetheless. And some pleasant songs follow, from the playful “Pyramania” to the purposeful “Can’t Take It With You.” But the slight attraction I’ve felt toward the band stems from their marriage of ambitious concepts, immaculate production value and mildly hypnotic instrumentals. You’ll find those ingredients in various measures on their first six studio albums, but you won’t find them here. The Best of The Alan Parsons Project focuses on their commercial singles, one facet of a multi-faceted outfit. (“Lucifer” is an instrumental track that hardly balances the proceedings.) While I’ve enjoyed these songs in their original context, it was the music that separated these songs (“Nucleus,” “The Turn of a Friendly Card,” “Silence And I”) that made the more commercial moments palatable. Here it’s all too sweet. And the decision to exclude “Day After Day (The Show Must Go On)” or anything from their first album seems shortsighted. So it appears Arista was aiming at radio listeners who were familiar with the Project’s popular hits and might be curious enough to buy an entire album of their music, rather than longtime fans who were looking for a succinct career summation. I’ve always had difficulty warming up to APP anyway, so maybe it’s no wonder that The Best of The Alan Parsons Project leaves me cold.

AL8-8193 inner gatefold AL8-8193 back cover
AL8-8193 inner gatefold AL8-8193 back cover

TRACK LISTING

  1. I WOULDN'T WANT TO BE LIKE YOU    3:08
  2. EYE IN THE SKY    4:29
  3. GAMES PEOPLE PLAY    4:14
  4. TIME    4:57
  5. PYRAMANIA    2:40
  6. YOU DON'T BELIEVE    4:23
  7. LUCIFER    4:05
  8. PSYCHOBABBLE    4:48
  9. DAMNED IF I DO    3:30
  10. DON'T LET IT SHOW    3:28
  11. CAN'T TAKE IT WITH YOU    4:40
  12. OLD AND WISE    4:04

    All compositions by Eric Woolfson and Alan Parsons

CREDITS

Donn Davenport -- art direction
Howard Fritzson -- design
Lee Abrams -- liner notes
Stephan Knapp -- paintings

return to THE ALAN PARSONS PROJECT discography

REGION RELEASE DATE LABEL MEDIA ID NUMBER FEATURES
US/CAN October 1983 Arista LP/CD/CS AL8/ARCD/AC-8193 digitally remastered, gatefold cover
UK/GER 1983 Arista LP 205 909 gatefold cover
AUS'L 1983 Arista LP RML 52035  
US   Mobile Fidelity LP MFSL1-175 original master recording

 

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