Trilogy (Emerson, Lake & Palmer album)

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
Jump to: navigation, search
Trilogy (Emerson, Lake & Palmer album - cover art).jpg
Studio album by Emerson, Lake & Palmer
Released 6 July 1972
Recorded October 1971, January 1972, Advision Studios, London, England [1]
Genre Progressive rock
Length 42:23
Label Island (UK)
Atlantic (US)
Producer Greg Lake
Emerson, Lake & Palmer chronology
Pictures at an Exhibition
Brain Salad Surgery

Trilogy is the third studio album by the English progressive rock band Emerson, Lake & Palmer, released in 1972. The front cover designed by Hipgnosis depicts Emerson, Lake, and Palmer attached at the shoulders, while the interior of the original gatefold sleeve features a photomontage showing multiple images of the band in Epping Forest carpeted with autumn leaves.

Trilogy increased ELP's worldwide popularity, and included "Hoedown", an arrangement of the Aaron Copland composition, which was one of their most popular songs when performing live.

References to a quad version of this album appeared in 1974 Harrison or Schwann record & tape guides, listing Trilogy in the Quadraphonic 8-track tape cartridge format. Collectors report never seeing a Trilogy Q8 at retail, despite its having a catalog number "Cotillion QT-9903."[citation needed]

Lake has said this is his favourite ELP record.[2]


"The Endless Enigma" consists of three parts: Endless Enigma Part One, Fugue and Endless Enigma Part Two. Endless Enigma Part One has a quiet intro lasting one minute and 36 seconds. This intro section consists of the Moog, bass drum and piano. The song Endless Enigma Part One opens with the sound of a beating heart, an effect sometimes claimed to have been created by the Ludwig Speed King bass drum pedal of Palmer's Ludwig Octaplus kit. However, in the sleeve notes to the 2015 CD/DVD reissue, remix engineer Jakko Jakszyk is quoted as saying "It starts with a heartbeat which I've discovered is actually Greg [Lake] playing... muted strings on his bass guitar." The effect appears on Trilogy before it was used on Jethro Tull's A Passion Play and Pink Floyd's The Dark Side of the Moon, both released in 1973, as well as Queen's Queen II, which was released in 1974.

"From the Beginning" is a soft, acoustic guitar-based piece that peaked at #39 on the US charts.[3] More often appearing in ELP compilations than live concerts, the track lent its name to a 1997 retrospective of Greg Lake's work.[4] The song was also covered by Czech folk rock band Marsyas, albeit under a different name (Studená koupel - Cold Bath) and with Czech lyrics.[5]

In the opening drum solo on the track "The Sheriff", Carl Palmer accidentally hit the rim of his tom-tom with a drumstick. He responded with the word "shit" which can be heard when listening carefully. "The Sheriff" ends with a honky tonk-type piano solo with Palmer playing woodblocks.[citation needed]

"Hoedown" was composed after Emerson first went to Romania at the George Enescu Festival. Thus it involves traditional Romanian music elements. The adaptation of "Hoedown" features a rollicking organ theme with synthesizer flourishes. It became the opening song for both the Trilogy and Brain Salad Surgery tours.

"Abaddon's Bolero" sounds like a bolero turned into a march (in 4/4 rhythm rather than the usual 3/4). A single melody containing multiple modulations within itself is repeated over and over in ever more thickly layered arrangements, starting from a quiet Hammond organ making a flute-like sound over a snare drum, and building up to a wall of sound – Maurice Ravel's famous Boléro uses a similar effect. "Abaddon's Bolero" is replete with overdubs. Almost every time an instrument comes in, another overdub follows. "Abaddon's Bolero" was only played live a handful of times, with Greg Lake handling Mellotron and additional Moog synthesizer duties; the song turned out to be a disaster, and was cut from the setlist.[6]


Professional ratings
Review scores
Source Rating
Allmusic 4/5 stars[7]
Robert Christgau C−[8]

The album reached #5 on the Billboard 200[9] and peaked at #2 on the UK album charts.[10]

Track listing[edit]

Side one
No. Title Writer(s) Length
1. "The Endless Enigma (Part One)"   Keith Emerson, Greg Lake 6:41
2. "Fugue"   Emerson 1:56
3. "The Endless Enigma (Part Two)"   Emerson, Lake 2:03
4. "From the Beginning"   Lake 4:16
5. "The Sheriff"   Emerson, Lake 3:22
6. "Hoedown"   Aaron Copland, arr. Emerson, Lake, Carl Palmer 3:47
Side two
No. Title Writer(s) Length
1. "Trilogy"   Emerson, Lake 8:54
2. "Living Sin"   Emerson, Lake, Palmer 3:13
3. "Abaddon's Bolero"   Emerson 8:08




  1. ^ Circus September 1972: "Trilogy was recorded over a period of time at Advision Studios in London. Eddie "are you ready" Offord was sitting at the mixing board. Part of it was recorded during October of 1971 shortly before E.L.P. did their Madison Square Garden dates on Thanksgiving; the remainder was completed when they arrived home from the tour."
  2. ^ "Vintage Rock Interview with Greg Lake". Retrieved 12 March 2012. I do like Trilogy. It is my favorite ELP album. It couldn’t be anyone else. It truly is a definitive album. It is the very best of ELP in a way. It’s got flashes of all the best things of what we were. 
  3. ^ "AllMusic From the Beginning". Retrieved February 8, 2012. 
  4. ^ "AllMusic From the Beginning: Retrospective". Retrieved February 8, 2012. 
  5. ^ Youtube Marsyas-Studena koupel
  6. ^
  7. ^ Couture, François. "Trilogy - Emerson, Lake & Palmer | AllMusic". Allmusic. Retrieved 26 July 2011. 
  8. ^ Christgau, Robert. "Robert Christgau: CG: Emerson, Lake and Palmer". Retrieved 26 July 2011. 
  9. ^ "Billboard". Retrieved February 10, 2012. 
  10. ^ "UK chart info Trilogy". Archived from the original on 4 April 2012. Retrieved 4 August 2011.