AL 9599 Eye In The Sky
Produced by Alan Parsons
Released on May 1982
US CHART POSITION #7 . . . PLATINUM RECORD (2/4/83) . . . UK CHART POSITION #27
Find it at GEMM
AL 9599 cover
[high resolution photo]
 

A wondrous wilting over Egyptology, astrology and psychology. With punk’s fifteen seconds past, ‘80s audiences were actually returning to the calm sounds of APP, The Moody Blues and Styx. Eye In The Sky is a remarkably soothing record, floating on a suffusion of warm currents like some intergalactic glider. As usual, the Project rouses itself from its own sleepiness for a few funkier tracks like “Psychobabble” and “Step By Step,” but generally the album stays within the title track’s field of vision. The first side of music surrounds the listener like a warm cocoon, directed by the airy vocals of Eric Woolfson and Chris Rainbow (only David Paton’s twangy voice on “Children of the Moon” breaks ranks). The second side is funkier by design, featuring Lenny Zakatek and Elmer Gantry. The opening “You’re Gonna Get Your Fingers Burned” is pedestrian, but “Psychobabble” and “Step By Step” are brisk-paced and pleasant. Colin Blunstone closes the album out with the orchestrated “Old And Wise,” returning the record to its gentle beginnings. Like The Moody Blues (whose Long Distance Voyager was equally masterful), The Alan Parsons Project were now writing spaced-out concept albums for people whose recreational drug of choice was a wine cooler. And like wine coolers, symphonic pop soon fell out of vogue. Eye In The Sky was the band’s last platinum record, and after Ammonia Avenue they wouldn’t see precious metal again. Thus this is seen as something of a last hurrah, the final in a string of well conceived and well received records that served as a sort of decompression chamber connecting prog rock and pop music.

A second glance at the Eye on June 04 reveals the same room-temperature sounds, though somehow I omitted the obvious references to Supertramp, 10cc and Pink Floyd earlier. In particular, I’m surprised I didn’t call out the 10-ccent “Gemini” and the ambitious orchestration of “Silence And I” before, since they’re two of the skylights on here. The green rating still holds; in fact, this may be my favorite APP album of the limited number I own (it’s down to this and Turn of a Friendly Card).

AL 9599 back cover AL 9599 lyric sleeve
AL 9599 back cover AL 9599 lyric sleeve

TRACK LISTING

  1. SIRIUS    1:48
  2. EYE IN THE SKY    4:33
  3. CHILDREN OF THE MOON    4:49
  4. GEMINI    2:09
  5. SILENCE AND I    7:17
  6. YOU'RE GONNA GET YOUR FINGERS BURNED    4:19
  7. PSYCHOBABBLE    4:50
  8. MAMMAGAMMA    3:34
  9. STEP BY STEP    3:52
  10. OLD AND WISE    4:52

    All tracks written by Eric Woolfson and Alan Parsons

CREDITS

IAN BAIRNSON -- acoustic and electric guitars
MEL COLLINS -- sax
STUART ELLIOT -- drums and percussion
ALAN PARSONS -- keyboards, Fairlight programming, engineer
DAVID PATON -- bass, vocals
ANDREW POWELL -- conductor, orchestral and choir arrangements
CHRIS RAINBOW -- vocals
ERIC WOOLFSON -- vocals, keyboards, executive producer
LENNY ZAKATEK -- vocals
Colin Blunstone -- vocals
The English Chorale -- vocals
Elmer Gantry -- vocals
George Hamer -- orchestral contractor
Bob Howes -- chorus master
Hipgnosis/APB/Colin Chambers -- sleeve
Keith W. Lehman -- photographer

return to THE ALAN PARSONS PROJECT discography

REGION RELEASE DATE LABEL MEDIA ID NUMBER FEATURES
US/KOR/NZ May 1982 Arista LP/CS AL 9599 lyric sleeve
UK/GER May 1982 Arista LP/CS 2/404 666 lyric sleeve
UK 1982? Arista LPPIC LC-3484 diecut cover, green vinyl
ARG 1982 Arista LP 81086  
CAN 1982 Arista LP ALB6-8290  
UK/GER/NET 1983 Arista CD 258718  
US   Arista LP/CD AL8/ARCD-8033  
RUS   CD Maximum CDX CDM73 repackaged w. VULTURE CULTURE

 

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