Emerson, Lake & Palmer

Pictures at an Exhibition

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One of the seminal documents of the progressive rock era, a record that made its way into the collections of millions of high-school kids who never heard of Modest Mussorgsky and knew nothing of Russia's Nationalist "Five." It does some violence to Mussorgsky, but Pictures at an Exhibition is also the most energetic and well-realized live release in Emerson, Lake & Palmer's catalog, and it makes a fairly compelling case for adapting classical pieces in this way. At the time, it introduced "classical rock" to millions of listeners, including the classical community, most of whose members regarded this record as something akin to an armed assault. The early-'70s live sound is a little crude by today's standards, but the tightness of the playing (Carl Palmer is especially good) makes up for any sonic inadequacies. Keith Emerson is the dominant musical personality here, but Greg Lake and Palmer get the spotlight enough to prevent it from being a pure keyboard showcase. [In 2004 Sanctuary released a British edition with a bonus track.]

Track Listing

Title/Composer Performer Time
1 1:57
2 4:16
3 1:23
4 4:40
5 2:31
6 4:18
7 1:30
8 1:12
9 4:09
10 1:06
11 6:26
12 4:33
blue highlight denotes track pick