Tandy And Morgan - 1986 Earthrise

EricEric USA
edited August 2 in year-1986


ARTIST: Tandy And Morgan
ALBUM: Earthrise
LABEL: Straight Ahead Records (USA), FM Revolver (UK)
YEAR: 1986
CD REISSUE: 2011, Rock Legqcy (UK), ROL 2011


LINEUP: Richard Tandy - keyboards * David Morgan - vocals, keyboards * Bob Wilson, Tony Clarkin, Martin Smith - guitars * Haydon James Simpson - drums

TRACK LISTING: 01 Zero Zero * 02 Third Planet * 03 Ria * 04 Princeton * 05 Pictures On My Pillow * 06 Secret * 07 Earthrise * 08 Under The Blue Asteroid * 09 Suddenly * 10 Escape From The Citadel * 11 Caesar Of The Galaxy * 12 1000 Worlds * 13 Space Ship Earth


Two names that should be familiar to Glory Daze readers are Richard Tandy and Dave Morgan. Both spent time in the Electric Light Orchestra, Tandy a member from the band's inception and former Magnum bassist Morgan joining the group in 1981.

Following ELO's 'Time' tour in 1982, work began on 'Earthrise' based largely on home recordings by Morgan. In 1984 calling themselves 'R and D', the duo released a single called 'Berlin' which eventually evolved into the 'Earthrise' album.

A second single 'Action!' was released although neither this song nor 'Berlin' appears on the LP. 'Earthrise' was available in the UK on FM Records and in the US on the tiny Straight Ahead label, both featuring different cover art.

It was released on CD in 1992, again with different art work and different track listing, excluding one song from the original album. It is the US version on Straight Ahead we will be reviewing here.

The Songs

'Earthrise' is a keyboard heavy record so don't expect any cello or violin ala ELO although there is some tasty guitar work to be found, including the appearance of Morgan's former Magnum mate-Tony Clarkin.

A more acceptable comparison would be Planet P Project, Klaatu and Alan Parsons Project to be precise.

Clearly a concept album, 'Zero Zero' opens 'Earthrise' with a poppy new wave inspired tune. Not a great start to be honest as it sounds rather dated.

'Third Planet' does have an ELO flavour, but it's the final three tracks on side one; 'Princeton', 'Pictures on My Pillow' and the lovely atmospheric ballad 'Secret' that hold side one together.

The second side is a little more consistent kicking off with the Klaatu-like title track.

'Suddenly' returns to the pop sound of side one and could almost be a lost ELO tune circa 'Secret Messages'. Nice stuff.

'Caesar of the Galaxy' (left off the current CD reissue) will recall Alan Parson Project which is always a good thing, but the best song on the record is the closing 'Space Ship Earth' which I swear I heard on the radio back in the day.

Great chorus and keyboard work highly reminiscent of Tandy & Morgan's day job in ELO.

In Summary

Overall a nice record and one of the better ELO related side projects I have had the pleasure to hear. The CD version is available on CD Baby and I recommend getting a copy if you like melodic concept albums.

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