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All Over the World: The Very Best of Electric Light Orchestra

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Album Review

Epic/Legacy's 2005 release All Over the World: The Very Best of Electric Light Orchestra is the latest installment in the seemingly endless series of ELO comps. Since it follows 2003's handy single-disc The Essential Electric Light Orchestra by merely two years, it's easy to wonder what distinguishes this from the other ELO collections on the market, and whether it was necessary to release another single-disc set so quickly after the last. The biggest differences between All Over the World and Essential is that the 2005 release has some very nice but altogether too brief liner notes from Jeff Lynne along with five more tracks than the 15-track 2003 release. That doesn't necessarily mean that it's a better album, however. While it does contain the terrific "Showdown," which was missing from Essential, All Over the World is inexplicably missing ELO's first American Top Ten single, "Can't Get It out of My Head," along with such other key tracks as "Do Ya," "Calling America," "Roll Over Beethoven," "10538 Overture," and "Boy Blue." Although the presence of "Xanadu" and such album tracks as "The Diary of Horace Wimp" make up for some of these absences, there are too many good songs missing to make this a pick over Essential, which has a higher ratio of hits. That said, All Over the World has most of the big songs — "Mr. Blue Sky," "Evil Woman," "Don't Bring Me Down," "Sweet Talkin' Woman," "Turn to Stone," "Hold on Tight," "Livin' Thing," "Ma-Ma-Ma Belle," "Strange Magic," and "Rock and Roll Is King" among them — and it's a good listen, so most casual fans won't be disappointed if this is the only ELO disc they own (although they will sorely miss "Can't Get It out of My Head"). But if you're just about to pick up one ELO disc, get Essential or, better still, 1995's double-disc Strange Magic instead, since they both are tighter, better listens than this and have more of the major hits.

Customer Reviews

Good Selection

All Over The World gives a very good range of all of ELO's career, (minus the first 2 albums and Balance of Power) including some songs that the average listener might not have heard before, (such as The Dairy of Horace Wimp or Ma-Ma-Ma Belle, both of which have been slightly forgotten over the years). Though a few are missing, (like Do Ya and Daybreaker) this set of songs are very enjoyable. The inclusion of Xanadu material is great as well. For $10, this album is highly recogmended!

Hold On Tight to your Dreams

A very lively song with a great beat. Enjoyable.

Elo # 1

elo's best album ever includes great classics like mister blue sky and all over the world


Formed: October, 1970 in Birmingham, England

Genre: Rock

Years Active: '70s, '80s, '90s, '00s

The Electric Light Orchestra's ambitious yet irresistible fusion of Beatlesque pop, classical arrangements, and futuristic iconography rocketed the group to massive commercial success throughout the 1970s. ELO was formed in Birmingham, England in the autumn of 1970 from the ashes of the eccentric art-pop combo the Move, reuniting frontman Roy Wood with guitarist/composer Jeff Lynne, bassist Rick Price, and drummer Bev Bevan. Announcing their intentions to "pick up where 'I Am the Walrus' left off,"...
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