Great Rock Albums of 1979: ELO- Discovery

This album has been dubbed “Disco Very” by some and the phrase was actually first coined by band member Richard Tandy. However, I never really considered this to be a disco album.  I don’t doubt that singles like “Shine a Little Love” probably got played a lot in discos across the world, especially that there were other notable rock stars crossing over into disco, most likely for the big bucks. Some, like The Rolling Stones with “Some Girls” and Rod Stewart with “Do You Think I’m Sexy” were quite blatant about it. Still, back in 1979, I would have much rather listened to that ELO song than either of those two or the disco tune that was popular at the time, Anita Ward’s “Ring My Bell.”

“Discovery” was a departure for ELO in other ways as well. It was the first album not to feature its famous string trio with the violin and two cellos because Jeff Lynne had considered them superfluous to requirements. I often wonder if this was not a mistake as although this is a good album, it’s  not as good as the previous album “Out of the Blue.” Nonetheless, the album does contain a really cool rock sounding song, “Don’t Bring Me Down,” which is among my favourite ELO songs.

Track Listing

1. Shine a Little Love

2. Confusion

3. Need Her Love

4. The Diary of Horace Wimp

5. Last Train to London

6. Midnight Blue

7. On the Run

8. Wishing

9. Don’t Bring Me Down

ELO

Jeff Lynne- vocals, guitar, piano, synthesiser

Bev Bevan- drums, percussion

Richard Tandy- piano, synthesiser, clavinet, electric piano

Kelly Groucutt- bass, vocals

It has been said that “Discovery” was a departure from a formula that had worked very well for ELO in the past. I won’t be dragged into that debate, but I will say that it isn’t as good as the previous album. It is still a good album nevertheless with some good tracks, definitely still a good listen after all these years.

Next Post: George Harrison- Somewhere in England

To buy Rock And Roll Children, go to www.strategicpublishinggroup.com/title/RockAndRollChildren.html

Also available on Amazon, Barnes & Noble and Froogle and on sale at Foyles Book Shop in London

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