Eldorado (Electric Light Orchestra album)

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Elo Eldorado.jpg
Studio album by Electric Light Orchestra
Released September 1974 (1974-09) (US)
October 1974 (1974-10) (UK)
Recorded February – August 1974
De Lane Lea Studios, London, United Kingdom
Length 38:42
Label Warner Bros. (UK), United Artists (US)
Producer Jeff Lynne
Electric Light Orchestra chronology
The Night the Light Went On in Long Beach
Electric Light Orchestra studio album chronology
On the Third Day
Face the Music
Singles from Eldorado
  1. "Can't Get It Out of My Head"
    Released: November 1974
  2. "Boy Blue"
    Released: April 1975

Eldorado (subtitled A Symphony by the Electric Light Orchestra) is the fourth studio album by the Electric Light Orchestra (ELO), released in 1974.


Eldorado is the first complete ELO concept album; bandleader Jeff Lynne conceived the storyline before he wrote any music.[1] The plot follows a Walter Mitty-like character who journeys into fantasy worlds via dreams, to escape the disillusionment of his mundane reality. Lynne began to write the album in response to criticisms from his father, a classical music lover, who said that Electric Light Orchestra's repertoire "had no tune".[2] The influence of the Beatles is prevalent, especially in the melody of the verse of "Mister Kingdom" which to some degree resembles the Beatles' "Across the Universe".


Eldorado marks the first album on which Jeff Lynne hired an orchestra; on previous albums, Lynne would overdub the strings.[1] Louis Clark co-arranged, with Lynne and keyboardist Richard Tandy), and conducted the strings. The group's three resident string players continued to perform on recordings, however, and can be heard most prominently on the songs "Boy Blue" and "Laredo Tornado". Mike de Albuquerque departed early on in the recording process, as touring made him feel separated from his family. Lynne plays most of, if not all, the bass tracks and backing vocals for the album, even though de Albuquerque received credit. Nevertheless, de Albuquerque was involved in some of the released album, if not as prominently as previous albums. Kelly Groucutt replaced de Albuquerque for the subsequent tour, when cellist Melvyn Gale also joined. "Eldorado Finale" is heavily orchestrated much like "Eldorado Overture". Jeff Lynne said of the song, "I like the heavy chords and the slightly daft ending, where you hear the double bass players packing up their basses, because they wouldn't play another millisecond past the allotted moment."[1]

Release, reception and aftermath[edit]

Professional ratings
Review scores
Source Rating
Allmusic 5/5 stars[3]
Rolling Stone favourable[4]
Rolling Stone Album Guide 4/5 stars[5]
Music Story 4.5/5 stars[6]

"Can't Get It Out of My Head" was released as a single (with "Illusions in G Major" as the flipside) and was a success in the US. An edited version of "Boy Blue" was released as the album's second single, but failed to make any commercial impact. The album was certified Gold in the United States soon after its release. The album and singles, however, failed to find a wide audience in the band's native United Kingdom.

In 1978, the filmmaker Kenneth Anger re-released his 1954 film Inauguration of the Pleasure Dome, using Eldorado as the soundtrack. In July 2010, the album was named one of Classic Rock magazine's "50 Albums That Built Prog Rock".[7]

Track listing[edit]

All songs written by Jeff Lynne.

Side one
  1. "Eldorado Overture" (Instrumental) – 2:12
  2. "Can't Get It Out of My Head" – 4:21
  3. "Boy Blue" – 5:18
  4. "Laredo Tornado" – 5:29
  5. "Poor Boy (The Greenwood)" – 2:57
Side two
  1. "Mister Kingdom" – 5:50
  2. "Nobody's Child" – 3:40
  3. "Illusions in G Major" – 2:36
  4. "Eldorado" – 5:20
  5. "Eldorado Finale" – 1:20
Re-issue CD bonus tracks
  1. "Eldorado Instrumental Medley" – 7:56
  2. "Dark City" – 0:46

The album was remastered and reissued on 12 June 2001 with two bonus tracks, "Eldorado Instrumental Medley", a suite of the album's orchestral parts, plus "Dark City", an early draft of the track "Laredo Tornado".


Additional personnel
  • Peter Forbes-Robertson – spoken word
  • Louis Clark – orchestra and choral arrangements and conducting
  • Al Quaglieri – reissue producer (2001)

Chart positions[edit]


  1. ^ a b c Wild, David. "The Story of a Rock and Roll Band and the Pop Genius Who Dared to Go Baroque." Flashback.
  2. ^ Porter, Robert, Jeff Lynne Song Database, June 2013. http://www.jefflynnesongs.com/cgioomh/ Retrieved 25 June 2013
  3. ^ Eder, Bruce. "Eldorado – Electric Light Orchestra : Songs, Reviews, Credits, Awards". AllMusic. Retrieved 3 March 2013. 
  4. ^ (Posted: 2 January 1975) (2 January 1975). "Electric Light Orchestra: Eldorado : Music Reviews : Rolling Stone". Web.archive.org. Archived from the original on 16 February 2008. Retrieved 3 March 2013. 
  5. ^ http://www.acclaimedmusic.net/Current/A1436.htm
  6. ^ http://www.acclaimedmusic.net/Current/A1401.htm
  7. ^ Classic Rock magazine, July 2010, Issue 146.
  8. ^ "Electric Light Orchestra – Awards". AllMusic. Retrieved 2 May 2013.