Electric Light Orchestra: Face the Music (United Artists)
Gary Kenton, Circus, 23 March 1976
HATS OFF to Jeff Lynne! For all the success that he has achieved as the prime mover of the past three Electric Light Orchestra albums (each of which, by the way, has outsold its predecessor), Lynne has continued to operate in the creative shadow of Roy Wood. But the impeccable beauty of the latest ELO album, Face the Music, combined with Wood's faltering output over the past few years, is not only cause to take another look at Lynne's recent accomplishments but to re-evaluate his entire career. With a wisdom uncharacteristic of rock musicians, Lynne has strengthened his strong suits while working to curtail his excesses. While Wood's creative fall may be more dramatic than Lynne's rise, the later has achieved a consistency that has been sorely overlooked.
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