I’m pretty happy with my collection of Alan Parsons albums. I’ve got all of the “Project” albums except the compilations (which I obviously don’t need), and I’ve got all the post-Project albums. I also have the soundtrack to Ladyhawke, which was a terrible soundtrack (the film’s editors had a hard time fitting it to the film, which is a bad sign right there) but an EXCELLENT piece of listening material.
Shortly after leaving Novell to pursue cartooning full-time, I bought Alan Parsons latest, “A Valid Path,” and that album will, for me, always help me remember the coupling of uncertainty and liberty that described my first month out of the corporate womb.
I thought my collection was complete. I always wondered about the six-year gap between “Gaudi” and “Try Anything Once” (which is, for me anyway, the very best of all Alan Parson’s albums, Project or no), but I’m not hard-core enough to Google it and find out what he was up to.
Well, I found out. I can’t remember the reference that caught my eye, but there was this album released in 1990 (three years after “Gaudi,” and three years before “Try Anything Once”) called “Freudiana,” which was also the last album in which Alan Parsons and Eric Woolfson appeared together. Woolfson is the voice behind the classic Alan Parsons Project hits like “Eye in the Sky” and “Time.” His voice is so soft and smooth… it’s like one of those fuzzy-soft sweaters worn over a silk undershirt. I mean, his voice is AMAZING.
But I digress… “Freudiana” was sort of “The Eric Woolfson Project,” and Alan Parsons worked with him on it, as did several Project musicians, including orchestral arranger/director Andrew Powell and signature-sound guitarist Ian Bairnson. It was a STAGE MUSICAL centering around a journey through the works and world of Sigmund Freud. Needless to say, I had to have it. I found it through Amazon, bought a used copy, and it arrived yesterday.
Wow. I can hear licks that Powell ended up refining on “Try Anything Once,” and that first appeared in “Ladyhawke,” and that’s just the beginning. Parsons’ tunes (the ones that have his name on them) are completely and unmistakably worthy of his good name, and Woolfson’s songs (especially the title track) are every bit as good as the stuff he did on Project albums. There are a couple of tracks in there that don’t mesh with what I imagine the “sound” of “The Alan Parsons Project to be,” but hey, it’s a STAGE MUSICAL, and it’s not like the tracks are bad. There’s a piece on there that reminds me of the innocent days of The Beatles, and a couple of really wacked-out tracks by “The Flying Pickets” that I like more the more I hear them.
So… now that I have MY copy, you Alan Parsons addicts out there can armwrestle over the remaining “Freudiana” copies gathering dust at Amazon. MY collection is complete.
p.s. Does anybody out there have a copy of “Lenny Zakatek” (produced by Alan Parsons, and featuring some Project musicians…) they want to part with?