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Author Topic: Can we talk about the Xanadu album?  (Read 12649 times)
falsumnomen
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« on: Nov 07, 2004, 02:30 »

I am not a die hard ELO fan, but I think Jeff Lynne is a visionary.  His music has profoundly touched me from the time I was a child.  I was introduced to Lynne via the Xanadu album when I was 11.  I really liked the lyrics, melodies, and harmonies, as well as the electronic component of his music.  Shortly after, Gary Numan came out with the song "Cars", and I was swept away with the new technological groove.  

I never abandoned my passion for this type of music as I grew older, and I often longed for "the old days" when the synthesizer ruled, but I realized that trends in music had to progress along their own course.  

I was really excited when I saw Lynne in the Traveling Wilburys (sp?) video for the first time.  I was profoundly moved by the convergence of the musicians that I considered to be musical geniouses.  Many years later, I saw Lynne and Petty perform a T.W. song on television sans Orbison and Harrison (post mortum) and I was moved to tears.  

I believe that Lynne is a great storyteller and lyricist.  All of his songs that I have listened to have a universal quality.  In terms of the Xanadu album, I am often moved when I listen to "Don't Walk Away".  It is a song that everyone can identify with in one way or another.  Its simplicity (some may call it "cheesiness") is its beauty.  It reminds me of my father and how I felt so terribly alone after he died.  The song that follows on the album reminds me to celebrate life.  

I'm interested in what others have to write of Lynne and the Xanadu album.  I may not get back to you as quickly as you'd like because I am chained to academia.  I will check back, if not shortly, at least by Dec. 17 or so.  Thanks to all that read my post (and endured), and I look forward to hearing from you.

P.S. I really like that this site respects people's privacy and doesn't share information or have required fields to fill out in order to post.  

Sincerely, falsumnomen.
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« Reply #1 on: Nov 08, 2004, 06:48 »

I quite like the electronic/synth based stuff Jeff got into in the eighties. In fact I would say my favorite time period for ELO would be 1980-86. "All Over the World"  to me shows Jeff at his best vocally and Jeff's production is over the top in a good way. I think it's too bad that Xanadu is seen as a project that damaged ELO's credibility.
But Xanadu also saw the start of Jeff working with a guy named Bill Bottrell, who went on to work with Sheryl Crow and Shelby Lynne! The pairing of Jeff and Bill was a really good combination, in my opinion. They worked together for about the next ten years.
Incidentally here is what Bill wrote in 1994 about working with Jeff on Secret Messages-

"Secret Messages was recorded over a 6-month period starting in August,
1982, at Wisseloord Studios, Hilversum, Holland. I was the engineer.
These sessions were among the most intense and creative I've ever been
associated with in 20 years in the studio. The double album we turned in
was quite advanced both artistically and sonically.  CBS records was by
that time taking ELO for granted and made the decision to cut the record
down to a single disc.  They cut out the most adventurous material.
"Endless Lies" was indeed a Roy Orbison nod.  There was "Mandalay", a tour
de force and a wall of sound the likes of which would not be touched for
another 15 years.  There was "No Way Out" with its simulated tap-dance and
brilliant dance-hall vocal. "Beatles Forever",  and "My Old Friend" about
Birmingham in Jeff's youth.  I believe some of this stuff may have come
out in a boxed set, but I'm not sure.  I know I still have my tape.
Bill Bottrell"
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Anonymous
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« Reply #2 on: Nov 24, 2004, 02:00 »

Thanks a lot for your response!
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NYGuy322
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« Reply #3 on: Sep 02, 2005, 11:04 »

I've heard two sides of the story on the Xanadu soundtrack
some say it's crap
some say it was the movie's lone saving grace
what do you guys think about it?
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Anonymous
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« Reply #4 on: Sep 03, 2005, 06:01 »

I personally think it's one off the best ELO-songs there is. I know a lot of people think different about it, but I realy love the song very much! Yes, the movie wasn't that much, but the songs were great: all over the world, I'm alive, xanadu etc. absolutely one of my favs,

greetz, Willem
www.alternativa.nl
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« Reply #5 on: Sep 04, 2005, 01:18 »

me too...I love 'The Fall' and all the others are great too
I have the movie on DVD and I don't take it so serious but feels great when they start to play some ELO =)



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NYGuy322
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« Reply #6 on: Sep 04, 2005, 03:08 »

All Over The World and Don't Walk Away were my favorite of the ELO songs
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chippa
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« Reply #7 on: Sep 05, 2005, 12:13 »

The movie was just plain bad. The music, aside from The Fall, was actually pretty good. Dont Walk Away is one of Jeff's best ballad's ever!
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tcwh1971
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« Reply #8 on: Dec 07, 2005, 05:18 »

I too have the movie on DVD and I bought it when I was in New York in 2000. I also have the UK issue on DVD but to be honest it's a really poorly packaged affair. The only extra is a trailer as featured on the US issue. I don't know if any one else has noticed this but when I played the UK issue DVD I noticed that I'm Alive sounded different to the US issue DVD release. I'm Alive on the US DVD was not the actual version featured on the original soundtrack album. It has a different production sound to it, almost like a polished demo version, you could say. Where as on the UK issue the film features what sounds like the actual soundtrack version. I was disappointed when I diecovered this and I find and I'm rather intrigued as to why it was changed for the UK release. Also, the trailer features a snippet of what sounds like an I'm Alive demo which is amazing to hear and also different versions of other tracks featured on the soundtrack including the title track Xanadu which closes the trailer.

I was very pleased with recent reissue of Xanadu from several years back but now I think it would be a good time to reissue Xanadu once more since it's been 25 years this year since it's original release (your views appreciated). Although I see this as being highly unlikely considering we've yet to see the remaining ELO albums remastered. I'm pretty sure we'll be treated to yet another ELO compilation before the remaining ELO remasters see the light of day >:/ I'm sure many, if not all, ELO fans would love to have the 'Xanadu 25th anniversary edition' in their collection. Has a nice ring to it don't you think?
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« Reply #9 on: Dec 08, 2005, 03:12 »

Quote from: "tcwh1971"


I was very pleased with recent reissue of Xanadu from several years back but now I think it would be a good time to reissue Xanadu once more since it's been 25 years this year since it's original release (your views appreciated). Although I see this as being highly unlikely considering we've yet to see the remaining ELO albums remastered. I'm pretty sure we'll be treated to yet another ELO compilation before the remaining ELO remasters see the light of day >:/ I'm sure many, if not all, ELO fans would love to have the 'Xanadu 25th anniversary edition' in their collection. Has a nice ring to it don't you think?


I'd like to see the outtakes and demos released. Maybe they could remaster the ELO side and replace the ONJ stuff with ELO Xanadu demos and outtakes.  The Xanadu Overture would be worth the price by itself.
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Erchie
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« Reply #10 on: Dec 08, 2005, 06:09 »

I got the album about a month ago for my birthday and to be honest I was a bit dissapointed. I had heard before Jeff's version of Xanadu and All Over The World which is great.

I'm Alive was ok, as well as Don't Walk Away, but I rather would have had "Drum Dreams" instead of The Fall (why on earth it wasn't included in the re-release!?). About ELO getting lame after that, definitely not. They did a big part of their best works after that. The whole Time album is great and Secret Messages is very good too, especially "Loser Gone Wild", "Bluebird" and "Four Little Diamonds". Too bad they left "Hello My Old Friend" and "Buildings Have Eyes" off though. Balance Of Power has some great songs too; "Heaven Only Knows" and "So Serious" plus the b-sides "Caught In A Trap" and the alternative version of "Matter Of Fact".
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« Reply #11 on: Dec 08, 2005, 09:40 »

well.. the fall is def?nately one of my favs..really like that one...very much more than drum dreams but that song is quite good



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chauncey
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« Reply #12 on: Dec 12, 2005, 02:49 »

I am new to this forum.  I have been getting into ELO for quite some time now.  I can't believe I hadn't gotten into them years ago.  But, having an affinity for Queen, I know that Queen members, notably drummer Roger Taylor, have had a interest in ELO.  I am slowly collecting their work.

Here's my Xanadu question.  I have always know Olivia Newton-John's version of Xanadu.  But, on the internet, I heard a sample clip of Xanadu, but with Jeff Lynne on vocals.  Is this old or new?  When was it released, and on what album??

I certainly hope I'm not asking an inane question.  I just don't know ELO that well......yet.
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tcwh1971
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« Reply #13 on: Dec 12, 2005, 06:13 »

Quote from: "chauncey"
I am new to this forum.  I have been getting into ELO for quite some time now.  I can't believe I hadn't gotten into them years ago.  But, having an affinity for Queen, I know that Queen members, notably drummer Roger Taylor, have had a interest in ELO.  I am slowly collecting their work.

Here's my Xanadu question.  I have always know Olivia Newton-John's version of Xanadu.  But, on the internet, I heard a sample clip of Xanadu, but with Jeff Lynne on vocals.  Is this old or new?  When was it released, and on what album??

I certainly hope I'm not asking an inane question.  I just don't know ELO that well......yet.


Hi Chauncey- Since you're new to ELO I'll let you of - lol. In answer to your question about the Jeff Lynne version of Xanadu. It only features on the 3 cd ELO compilation called 'Flashback' from 2000. To be honest I found it rather disappointing and rather bland and the drums just seem to be lifeless Sad Anyway, Olivia's version is so much better than Jeff's (sorry Jeff) However, I will say it was interesting to here his version and believe he has wanted to do this for sometime. I got the impression it was rushed and just put in to attract fans but unfortunately it didn't do very much for me and I'm a big fan. Hope that answered your question.
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Nuihc88
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« Reply #14 on: Dec 12, 2005, 08:40 »

"It only features on the 3 cd ELO compilation called 'Flashback' from 2000."

it's also on  "After Years" (Jeff Lynne Bootleg)  and  "All Over The World" (2005)
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