The Alan Parsons Project
This album was originally released by Arista Records in 1984. The title track was inspired in part by a Petro-Chemical plant in Middlesborough, England.
September 22, 2008 saw the release of a remastered version of this album, complete with bonus tracks and improved packaging..
|AP: "Theoretically it was inspired by Eric's visit to a petro-chemical plant in Middlesborough, after he'd struck up a friendship with the boss of ICI. Eric was just fascinated by this area containing all these hugely pollutive things; everything was pipes, factories and steam. Coincidentally, another very 1984-ish image. Among all the pipes and steam there was this street called Ammonia Avenue. Essentially the album is conceptless I think, though the title song is perhaps an observation on ecology, and how we are poisoning ourselves."|
|Prime Time||vocal: Eric Woolfson||(5:03)|
|Let Me Go Home||vocal: Lenny Zakatek||(3:20)|
|One Good Reason||vocal: Eric Woolfson||(3:30)|
|Since The Last Goodbye||vocal: Chris Rainbow||(4:34)|
|Don't Answer Me||vocal: Eric Woolfson||(4:11)|
|Dancing On A Highwire||vocal: Colin Blunstone||(4:22)|
|You Don't Believe||vocal: Lenny Zakatek||(4:26)|
|Ammonia Avenue||vocal: Eric Woolfson||(6:30)|
|Dont Answer Me (Early Rough Mix)||instrumental||(1:59)|
|You Dont Believe (Demo)||instrumental||(2:09)|
|Since the Last Goodbye (Chris Rainbow Vocal Overdubs)||instrumental||(3:28)|
|Since the Last Goodbye (Eric Guide Vocal - Rough Mix)||instrumental||(3:40)|
|You Dont Believe (Instrumental Tribute to The Shadows)||instrumental||(10:19)|
|Dancing on a High Wire/ Spotlight (Work In Progress)||instrumental||(10:19)|
|Ammonia Avenue Part 1 (Eric Demo Vocal - Rough Mix)||instrumental||(10:19)|
|Ammonia Avenue (Orchestral Overdub)||instrumental||(10:19)|
Vocal Eric Woolfson Additional Vocals Chris Rainbow Wurlitzer Piano Eric Woolfson Electric and Acoustic Guitars Ian Bairnson Bass David Paton Drums and Percussion Stuart Elliott
Let Me Go Home
Vocal Lenny Zakatek Backing Vocals Chris Rainbow Guitars Ian Bairnson Piano Eric Woolfson Fairlight Guitars Alan Parsons Bass David Paton Drums Stuart Elliott
One Good Reason
Vocals Eric Woolfson Additional Vocals Chris Rainbow Wurlitzer Piano, Synth Eric Woolfson Guitars Ian Bairnson Bass David Paton Drums and Percussion Stuart Elliott
Since The Last Goodbye
Vocals Chris Rainbow Electric and Acoustic Guitars Ian Bairnson Bass David Paton Drums and Percussion Stuart Elliott Choir arranged and conducted by Andrew Powell
Don't Answer Me
Vocal Eric Woolfson Backing Vocals Chris Rainbow, Eric Woolfson Keyboards Eric Woolfson, Chris Rainbow Fairlight Alan Parsons Guitars Ian Bairnson Acoustic Guitars Ian Bairnson, David Paton Bass David Paton Drums and Percussion Stuart Elliott Sax Solo Mel Collins
Dancing On A Highwire
Vocals Colin Blunstone Keyboards Eric Woolfson Electric and Acoustic Guitars Ian Bairnson Bass David Paton Drums and Percussion Stuart Elliott
You Don't Believe
Vocal Lenny Zakatek Fairlight and LinnDrum Alan Parsons Additional Keyboards Eric Woolfson Guitars and Guitar Synth Ian Bairnson Bass David Paton Additional Drums Stuart Elliott
Synth Alan Parsons Sax Mel Collins Acoustic Guitars Ian Bairnson Bass David Paton Drums Stuart Elliott Choir arranged and conducted by Andrew Powell
Vocal Eric Woolfson Piano and Fairlight Eric Woolfson Backing Vocals Chris Rainbow Electric, Acoustic and Spanish Guitars Ian Bairnson Bass David Paton Drums and Percussion Stuart Elliott Choir arranged and conducted by Andrew Powell
BONUS MATERIAL NOTES
by Eric Woolfson & Alan Parsons, 2008
The recording process contains many magical moments on the creative journey. The process is not unlike throwing a lump of clay on a potter's wheel and then shaping and re-shaping the material an infinite number of times until the potter is satisfied. A casual observer might say "but you had the pot within the first minute, why didn't you just leave it at that." The art of the potter is to know just how far to go. The record producer's skill is to know when that point has been reached as far as the recordings are concerned and the writer has to apply a similar process to his compositions. They say a poem is never finished, it is abandoned. The same could certainly be said of music, lyrics or any creative effort. The great advantage of the recording process is that as one keeps rough mixes as a guide, one can delve into stages before the point of abandonment and revisit some of the magic from earlier attempts or stages.
From our personal point of view, it has been a fascinating experience to re-live these early stages, much of which were kept in archives and tape libraries and which might have well been forgotten with the passage of time but for the initiative of Tim Fraser-Harding at SONY BMG. We are also grateful to Haydn Bendall for his untiring patience and skill in assisting us in our trawl through the archives to complete this material.
Dont Answer Me (Early Rough Mix) Eric was a big fan of the early Phil Spector sounds and always wanted to make a record that sounded something like his Wall of Sound. This bonus track is an early mix, which had not yet had the many layers of overdubs piled on top of the basic track. Alan, who had been an assistant engineer when Phil Spector had worked with the Beatles, was not as enthusiastic as Eric was about trying to re-create the Spector sound. However after a lot of pleading on Erics part, Alan eventually said I suppose you mean this and pushed a few buttons and faders on the desk, immediately swamping the track with the most glorious reverb effect which can be heard on the final mix and contrasts with the much more basic approach on this bonus version. There is an included false start completely devoid of overdubs which is even emptier and gives an insight into what instrumentation was laid on the first takes of the song. You Dont Believe (Demo) This was a demo played and programmed into a Fairlight sampling and sequencing system a sophisticated computer-based instrument for its time. Although the guitar is a sampled sound it remained in evidence on the final studio version since it had a character we liked, rather than replacing it with real guitars. Since the Last Goodbye (Chris Rainbow Vocal Overdubs) This is a piece of Chris Rainbow magic which was so well embedded in the final mix that it cannot be heard with the clarity demonstrated here. Since the Last Goodbye (Eric Guide Vocal - Rough Mix) This track gives a good indication of how a song can evolve lyrically, very often ending up in a more simplified version, as in this case. What at one stage appeared to be an intrinsic part of the song (heard here), was eventually cut out. You Dont Believe (Instrumental Tribute to The Shadows) Sometimes a track meant to be an instrumental, turned into a song and sometimes a song turned into an instrumental. Although Alan had intended all along that this would be a track with vocals - under some protest he agreed to make an alternate version with Ian Bairnsons lead guitar (sounding uncannily like Hank Marvin) inserted over the basic Fairlight track. In the end, Eric agreed to try a vocal version and completed the lyrics, and this instrumental version was excluded Thank God adds Alan! Dancing on a High Wire/ Spotlight (Work In Progress) As a writer, Eric would often come up with several different elements or ideas, then we would combine them together for a finished song. Basically, we dealt with three sections a verse, a chorus and a middle or bridge. In this case, we attempted to put the pieces together from two different songs, but as often happened in the studio, as we continued to re-work the musical ideas, this combination was superseded as can be heard in the final mix. Ammonia Avenue Part 1 (Eric Demo Vocal - Rough Mix) Although this is a demo vocal of a track where Eric also sang the lead on the master, it does contain some differences to the final version. This was a snapshot at a time when he was clearly still working on lyrical ideas so you get a sense of the composer at work! Ammonia Avenue (Orchestral Overdub) An outstanding example of Andrew Powells brilliant orchestral scoring, soloed here, and much as we would hear it in the studio when it was recorded, with the backing track bleeding through headphones worn by the orchestra.
Produced by Alan Parsons
Executive Producer: Eric Woolfson
Engineered by Alan Parsons
Assistant Engineers: Tony Richards
The Philharmonia Orchestra
Leader: Christopher Warren-Green
Recorded at Abbey Road Studios, London
Digital Master Recorded on the Sony PCM 1610 system
Very Special Thanls to: John Harvey-Jones
Special Thanks to: Smokey, Hazel, David Rockberger, Don Cohn, Leonard Green, Aron Misan, Chris Bishop, Jane Moss, John Wallace, Eric Prince, Ian Grimble, Peter James, Haydn Bendall, David Cooper, Ken Townsend and all at Abbey Road.
Not forgetting Bob Buziak
Original Sleeve Design: STd
Photography: STd, Fell/Hurworth
Compiled for reissue by Eric Woolfson & Haydn Bendall (for Woolfsongs Ltd.), Tim Fraser-Harding & Jeff Magid (for SONY BMG) and Alan Parsons.
Expanded Edition Mastered by Dave Donnelly and Alan Parsons at DNA Mastering, Studio City, California.
Produced for reissue by Alan Parsons, Eric Woolfson and Jeff Magid.
Special thanks to Tim Fraser-Harding, Haydn Bendall and Sally Seddon
Reisse design by Mainartery Design
Memorablia - with thanks to Steve Martin, Sally Seddon and Mainartery
All tracks written by Eric Woolfson/Alan Parsons
except "Spotlight" written by Eric Woolfson
Published by Woolfsongs Ltd./Careers Music Inc. (BMI) .
Administered by Universal Music.
Spotlight published by Woolfsongs Ltd. (MCPS)
All bonus tracks copyright 2008, Licensed courtesy of Woolfsongs Ltd.
Official website www.the-alan-parsons-project.com
One of the benefits of the Expanded Edition of the classic APP albums is the improved bookelets and extra artwork. Early in the remastering project Tim Fraser-Harding contacted Steve Martin at The Avenue about artwork and rarities.
Many of the images submitted were used within the booklet, but just like "Spotlight", some things got left on the cutting room floor. In spirit of the Extended Editions, here are three of the images that didn't make the cut.
Left: "Don't Answer Me" 7" Single Sleeve with artwork from the video; Middle: the making of the "Don't Answer Me" video; Right: "Don't Answer Me" 7" Single Sleeve - Japanese release.
Click on any image to enlarge.
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