APP "Stereotomy" album

The Alan Parsons Project


This album was originally released by Arista Records in 1986. The word Stereotomy comes from Poe's "The Murders in the Rue Morgue". Eric thought that the word itself had quite a rock 'n' roll sound. I'd have to agree.

The title "Where's The Walrus" was influenced by their old friend Mr. Laser Beam. He was commenting on their previous efforts "Ammonia Avenue" and "Vulture Culture" and accused the band as having gone flat. "Where's the Walrus?" he asked, meaning, where are the classic songs like The Beatles' "I am The Walrus". Where is it? On this album!

March 10, 2008 saw the release of a remastered version of this album, complete with bonus tracks and improved packaging

AP: "Essentially this is concept-less, though the title relates to a word from Edgar Allen Poe's 'Murders In The Rue Morgue', meaning carvings in stone."


Stereotomy vocal: John Miles (7:17)
Beaujolais vocal: Chris Rainbow (4:27)
Urbania instrumental (4:59)
Limelight vocal: Gary Brooker (4:38)
In The Real World vocal: John Miles (4:21)
Where's The Walrus? instrumental (7:30)
Light Of The World vocal: Graham Dye (6:19)
Chinese Whispers instrumental (1:01)
Stereotomy Two vocal: John Miles (1:23)
Light Of The World (Backing Track) instrumental (6:14)
Rumour Goin’ Round (previously unreleased demo) instrumental (5:01)
Stereotomy (Eric Woolfson Guide Vocal) vocal: Eric Woolfson (6:37)
Stereotomy II (Backing Rough Mix) instrumental (1:23)



Vocals John Miles
Additional Vocals Eric Woolfson
Synths and Sequencers Richard (Trix) Cottle
Guitars and Guitar Synth Ian Bairnson
Bass David Paton
Drums and Percussion Stuart Elliott
DX7 Rhodes Eric Woolfson
Orchestra arranged and conducted by Andrew Powell
Scientist Voices Alan Parsons, Eric Woolfson, Tony Richards, Noel Rafferty


Vocals Chris Rainbow
Keyboards Richard (Trix) Cottle
Guitars and Guitar Synth Ian Bairnson
Bass David Paton
Drums and Percussion Stuart Elliott
Party FX The Mayfair Studio Gang


Synth Sequences Alan Parsons
Synths and Sax Richard (Trix) Cottle
Bass David Paton
Guitars Ian Bairnson
Traffic FX Tony Richards
Bass David Paton
Drums and Percussion Stuart Elliott


Vocal Gary Brooker
Synths Richard (Trix) Cottle
DX7 Rhodes Eric Woolfson
Guitars Ian Bairnson
Bass David Paton
Drums and Percussion Stuart Elliott
Backing Vocals Chris Rainbow

In The Real World

Vocal John Miles
Guitars Ian Bairnson
Bass David Paton
Synths Richard (Trix) Cottle
Drums Stuart Elliott

Where's The Walrus?

Synths, Sax and Sequencers Richard (Trix) Cottle
Guitars Ian Bairnson
Bass David Paton
Drums and Percussion Stuart Elliott
Orchestra arranged and conducted by Andrew Powell
Vocal FX Chris Rainbow

Light Of The World

Vocal Graham Dye
Backing Vocals Graham Dye, Steve Dye, Chris Rainbow
Piano Eric Woolfson
Guitars Ian Bairnson
Bass David Paton
Drums and Percussion Stuart Elliott
Synths Richard (Trix) Cottle
Orchestra arranged and conducted by Andrew Powell

Chinese Whispers

Synths Richard (Trix) Cottle
Processed Acoustic Guitars Ian Bairnson
Bass David Paton
Voices Sally and Lorna Woolfson

Stereotomy Two

Vocals John Miles
Synths Richard (Trix) Cottle
Guitars and Guitar Synth Ian Bairnson
Bass David Paton
Drums and Percussion Stuart Elliott
DX7 Rhodes Eric Woolfson
Orchestra arranged and conducted by Andrew Powell



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.

Whenever the core musicians compete a basic backing track, there is a sensation of having reached a plateau and although the eventual production may take the recording in a totally different direction, at that moment something rather special has been created which the music buyer is often unaware of.

Amongst this collection of bonus material, there are several examples of the magical early takes and in this re-mastered version of Stereotomy, for those interested in the process, there is a unique opportunity to glimpse behind the curtain of the recording process.

Stereotomy was the first Project album that was recorded entirely digitally and as a result, there was a greater economy of master tapes in the studio. For analogue recordings there were often many reels recorded, surplus to requirements, quite simply because to constantly go over out-takes was too time consuming and disruptive to the recording process. However, with digital, the equipment responded more quickly and it was relatively simple to roll back and record again. This simply means that there is less bonus material to draw on for this album.

From a 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.

Light Of The World (Backing Track) This was a reminder of how differently studio recordings could develop before the vocals were added. Many of the nuances of this atmospheric backing were inevitably lost when vocals were complete and final mixes were done. This backing has a particularly distinctive feel which can only really be appreciated being heard in this form.
Rumour Goin’ Round (previously unreleased demo) On many albums we could record more than we needed and this was an example of a track that could and should have developed into an outstanding contribution to the album. However, as some of the tracks rather over-ran and there was enough material to deliver the album without including this track, it was left by the way side. At this stage, Eric hadn’t completed the lyrics.
Stereotomy (Eric Woolfson Guide Vocal) This is another example of an early rough mix with a guide vocal which had a particular sound appeal in the studio and where the final mix once John Miles’ lead vocal had been added, created a recognizable but distinctly different feel. The rawness and hard edge of the original tracks can be heard to advantage in this bonus track.
Stereotomy II (Backing Rough Mix) Similarly for this track, an early rough mix conveys a different aspect of the recording.

Original Credits

Produced by Alan Parsons

Executive Producer - Eric Woolfson

Orchestra Arranged and Conducted by Andrew Powell

Engineered by Alan Parsons with Tony Richards

Assistant Engineer Noel Rafferty

Vocals: John Miles, Chris Rainbow, Gary Brooker, Graham Dye, Steve Dye, Eric Woolfson

Bass: David Paton

Drums and Percussion: Stuart Elliott

Guitars: Ian Bairnson

Synths and Saxes: Richard Cottle

Pianos and Keyboards: Eric Woolfson

The Philharmonia Orchestra: Leader Christopher Warren-Green

The album was recorded at Mayfair Studios London between October 1984 and August 1985

The orchestra was recorded at Abbey Road Studios

The album was recorded entirely on digital equipment

Special Thanks to Wim Schiffer, Richard Elen for the use of his ambisonic equipment, John Timms of Audio Rents, Terry Finn and Neumann for their help with the dummy head, Chris Bishop, Eric Prince, Werner Stambach, David Rockberger, John Branca, Nick Kanaar, Smokey, Hazel, Sally and Lorna, John and Kate Hudson and their team at Mayfair and of course, the one and only Mr. Laser Beam

Design and art direction Andrew Ellis and Colin Chambers

Sleeve copyright 1985 Icon Ltd.

Reissue Credits

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.

Special thanks to Tim Fraser-Harding, Haydn Bendall and Sally Seddon

Reissue design by Mainartery Design, London (

Memorablia - With thanks to Steve Martin, Sally Seddon and Mainartery

Published by Woolfsongs Ltd./Careers Music Inc. (BMI), Administered by Universal Music

Except 'Rumour Goin' Round' published by Woolfsongs Ltd. (MCPS)

Bonus tracks licensed by Woolfsongs Ltd

All tracks written by Eric Woolfson/Alan Parsons except 'Rumour Goin' Round' written by Eric Woolfson

Lyrics used by permission, all rights reserved

All bonus tracks patent 2008, licensed courtesy of Woolfsongs Ltd.

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 "Rumour Goin' Round", 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.

"Stereotomy" bonus art "Stereotomy" bonus art "Stereotomy" bonus art

Left: Custom label from original LP; Middle: "Stereotomy" press kit cover; Right: "Stereotomy" 12" promo sleeve (reverse side).

Click on any image to enlarge.

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