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The Time Machine

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Album Review

The Time Machine by Alan Parsons actually features very little musical input from Parsons himself, who produced and engineered the album. No matter, because this concept album about the passage of time — and the triumphs, mistakes, regrets, and memories associated with it — is Parsons' best work of the '90s. It blends Parsons' traditional prog rock and pop/rock leanings with a bit of techno. The real stars are guitarist/saxophonist/keyboardist/bassist Ian Bairnson and drummer/keyboardist Stuart Elliott, both longtime Alan Parsons Project cohorts who individually wrote most of this album's songs. Other Parsons veterans on The Time Machine include vocalists Colin Blunstone, Chris Rainbow, and Neil Lockwood. "The Time Machine (Part 1)" is a wonderful instrumental complete with dreamy acoustic guitar lines and a steady drum-machine rhythm. Spandau Ballet vocalist Tony Hadley tastefully restrains his past histrionics for "Out of the Blue." Blunstone is featured on the hypnotic "Ignorance Is Bliss," which also contains tasteful piano and orchestral flourishes. "The Call of the Wild" has a warm, Celtic feel thanks to the vocals by Clannad's Máire Brennan and a sprinkling of Northumbrian pipes. "No Future in the Past" and "Press Rewind" are the album's most distinctive pop/rock numbers. Beverley Craven provides the vocals on the lush, bittersweet ballad "The Very Last Time." "Far Ago and Long Away" is a densely arranged instrumental with an overtly techno flavor. The Time Machine will definitely please die-hard Parsons fans.


Born: 20 December 1948 in London, England

Genre: Rock

Years Active: '70s, '80s, '90s, '00s, '10s

As indicated by its name, the Alan Parsons Project was not a band so much as a concept overseen by the titular Parsons, a successful producer and engineer. Born in Britain on December 20, 1948, he began his musical career as a staff engineer at EMI Studios, and first garnered significant industry exposure via his work on the Beatles' 1969 masterpiece, Abbey Road. Parsons subsequently worked with Paul McCartney on several of Wings' earliest albums; he also oversaw recordings from Al Stewart, Cockney...
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The Time Machine, Alan Parsons
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