Tuesday, 5 June 2018

ELOpinion: Secret Messages 2LP minus Beatles Forever

#1,417: Back in April, elobeatlesforever (elobf) hinted that a 2LP/2CD "Secret Messages" release, possibly without "Beatles Forever" was imminent in Summer 2018 so when the folks at Official Jeff Lynne confirmed it today (Tuesday 5th June), 35 years to the date when the original 1LP (JETLX527) came out in 1983, it came as no surprise to Yours Truly KJS that Friday 3rd August will finally see the issue of a "Secret Messages" double album (with digital download), albeit without a certain track.

"For the first time ever, ELO’s Secret Messages will be released as a double album on August 3rd. Listen as Jeff Lynne’s eclectic creation of self-written, self-produced songs come to life as originally conceived in 1983. This 2LP release adds six tracks to its running order, all with cutting-edge synthesizers as well as up-front guitar mastery. Pre-order here: https://lnk.to/SecretMessages"

elobf: Secret Messages 2LP & ELO Singles Box Soon?

I said in this elobf article that "A 2LP "Secret Messages" without "Beatles Forever" would be the strangest of compromises" and I still hold that opinion. At the same time, it'll be great to see a formal release for the remainder of the set, especially "Hello My Old Friend". Some fans will be disappointed and others will doubtless be delighted. For me, it's a major missed opportunity even when coupled with that forthcoming ELO 7" singles boxed set, also soon to be revealed. The question now is whether my elobeatlesforever (elobf) mission is now complete ...

Until next "Time" in the ELO [and related] Universe ... KJS ... 05-June-2018


  1. Perhaps a campaign to have Beatles Forever released as an instrumental? A separate download-only for the hardcore fans. That would satosfy me. If Jeff's problem is only with the lyrics, why deny us the wonderful instrumentation...

  2. I can't find the Secret Messages 2cd confirmation on the official JL site, is it secretly hidden??

  3. There really isn't much point campaigning to have Beatles Forever remixed into an instrumental, as Jeff took what he felt were the best musical elements of this song and used them in Video! just months after Secret Messages was ultimately released in single disc form. Anyway, it's not the absence of this particular track bothering me - I'm curious to know if we'll really get Motor Factory (which is the earliest of two scrapped lyrical ideas that were supposedly wiped from the original multitrack tape) or just Rock 'N' Roll Is King in the mix we all know and love. My guess is that whoever produced the official tracklist just copied whatever they could find online, since this particular variation is mentioned exclusively on the Wikipedia page for Secret Messages as being Jeff's intention for the 2LP set when this was never actually the case.

    1. Dear Shardender ... The press release and publicity is shoddy as is the apparent lifting of the track list from Wikipedia. An own goal if ever there were one ... KJS@elobf

  4. Not complete KJS. No Beatles Forever...not an official release. Keep up the good fight...ELOBEATLESFOREVER Lives!!

  5. Could be there isn't enough room on the vinyl edition for Beatles Forever and they will put it on a cd edition.(Not)

  6. I wish all the ELO albums would get remastered AGAIN. The last time they tried it was either too compressed (objectively for the worse), or so cleaned up it sounded plastic (Sony ELO box set).

    If that does not happen, guess it's back to buying old original CD releases for me.

  7. I'll be posting this on my BLOG soon:

    Secret Messages (The Unofficial Definitive Edition) (1983) - Electic Light Orchestra

    "Secret Messages" by ELO remastered with bonus tracks, rarities and alternate versions. It contains the previously unreleased track "Beatles Forever" available for the first time in high quality. Here is the caption of their videos: I'm extraordinarily excited to present ELO's 1983 album 'Secret Messages', restored to its originally-intended double album form and lovingly remastered by us with our utmost care. Such a restoration has been awaited for 37 years - not even the 2018 re-release of the album was truly accurate to ELO's original vision. With all interludes in their proper places, and all audio from the best-quality sources, I hope that you will enjoy participating in this journey as much as I enjoyed posting it. Enjoy!


    01 Secret Messages 4:46
    02 Loser Gone Wild 5:24
    03 Blue Bird 4:14
    04 Take Me On And On 4:59
    05 Stranger 4:29
    06 No Way Out 3:28
    07 Beatles Forever 4:28
    08 Letter From Spain 3:00
    09 Danger Ahead 3:48
    10 Four Little Diamonds 4:13
    11 Train Of Gold 4:21
    12 Endless Lies 3:32
    13 Buildings Have Eyes 4:02
    14 Motor Factory / Rock 'N' Roll Is King 3:10
    14 Mandalay 5:20
    15 Time After Time 3:55
    16 After All 0:41
    17 Hello My Old Friend 8:35

    Additional Messages Bonus Tracks!

    01 Secret Messages (Soundcastle Mix) 3:38
    02 Four Little Diamonds (Extended Intro) 4:10
    03 Mandalay (Extended Outro) 5:29
    04 Ballbuster (Grieg's Piano Concerto In A Minor) 3:01
    05 Helpless 3:20
    06 Tears In Your Life 3:07
    07 After All (Single B-Side Version) 2:25
    08 Information 3:55
    09 Slipping Away 4:23
    10 Who's That 1:27