Photo: Martyn AtkinsWith Electric Light Orchestra celebrating its 40th anniversary this year, frontman Jeff Lynne is set to return with a pair of new albums in the fall. One set will feature a selection of classic covers and the other will boast rerecorded versions of some of ELO's most popular tunes. Both releases are scheduled to hit stores on October 9.
Long Wave offers Lynne's renditions of a dozen songs that helped inform his musical tastes when he was young. Included in the collection are standards such as "Bewitched, Bothered and Bewildered," "Love Is a Many Splendored Many Thing" and "Smile," and early rock-era tunes like Chuck Berry's "Let It Rock," The Everly Brothers' "So Sad" and Roy Orbison's "Running Scared."
"I call this new album Long Wave because all of the songs I sing on it are the ones heard on long-wave radio when I was a kid," Lynne explains in a statement. "These songs take me back to that feeling of freedom in those days and summon up the feeling of first hearing those powerful waves of music coming in on my old crystal set."
The other album coming from Lynne is titled Mr. Blue Sky: The Very Best of Electric Light Orchestra. The 12-track record features updated versions of many ELO classics, including "Don't Bring Me Down," "Do Ya," "Evil Woman" and "Turn to Stone." It also boasts a previously unheard tune titled "The Point of No Return."
Explaining why he decided to redo many of his old bands hits, Lynne says, "When I listen to the old versions they don't sound the way I thought they did when I first wrote and recorded them. I wanted to use the experience I've gained producing records…and have a completely new try at them."
He adds, "I'm not saying the old versions aren't good [but] these new ones sound much more solid and tight."
Meanwhile, Lynne is preparing a few projects for release in 2013, including a concert album titled ELO Live! and reissues of his 1990 solo effort Armchair Theater and ELO's 2001 Zoom album.
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