We’re going to start this new blogging challenge off strong with a brilliant piece from the progressive rock movement of the late 1970s!
No matter how “blue” I might get, this cut from Electric Light Orchestra never fails to pick up my mood. I had almost forgotten about it until watching a particularly odd episode of Doctor Who that centered around a young man and his friends attempting to track down the eponymous hero. The soundtrack to the episode featured Jeff Lynne’s musical endeavours quite prominently, even weaving “Mr. Blue Sky” into the narrative.
It’s a strange little episode, but the eternally happy notes of the tune have locked themselves firmly into my brain’s musical pantheon–a hero among songs–much like the rest of the entries in this series.
Who doesn’t love ELO? With Jeff Lynne’s synthy riffs, deep musicianship, and haunting vocals, Electric Light Orchestra proved themselves to be one of the best bands of the progressive rock era. In addition, they helped pioneer the idea of the concept album–a collection of songs that fit together either thematically or musically–to tell a story. ELO bridged the gap between esoteric prog-rock (a la Pink Floyd or The Moody Blues) and the dance-pop sounds of 1970s-era Top 40 radio.
To celebrate Jeff Lynne’s incredible contribution to popular music, the gang over at Pterodactyl Squad have put together a smashing tribute to one of the best bands of the progressive rock era. They took concepts and sounds explored through ELO’s many hits, combined them with the spacy artwork found on many of their album covers, and imagined a frenetic shoot-em-up fueled by some of the most famous riffs in classic rock. If you close your eyes, you can just imagine yourself in an alternate 1989, sitting in your living room alone with your Ataritendo Genesis and television, piloting a small fighter around the scenescape in the cover of Out Of The Blue, blasting past evil women, searching for Mr. Blue Sky before he is turned to stone.
Strange magic, indeed!
I can’t help but smile every time I hear this song!
Where once was pity, Mr. Blue Sky is living here today.
I can’t help but smile when I hear this song.