Something Else! sneak peek: Jeff Lynne, "Point of No Return" (2012)

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Jeff Lynne’s forthcoming redo of classic Electric Light Orchestra songs includes one eagerly awaited new composition, called “Point of No Return.” Check it out here!

The track sounds, at least in the early going, like the typical solo Lynne production, dominated by his now familiar drum signature, propelled by a Byrdsy guitar, enveloped with a double-tracked vocal. Add in Roy Orbison, and it might have been a Traveling Wilburys outtake.

Then, just as you’re getting comfy with it all, “Point of No Return” begins to elevate, as Lynne stirs in some billowing strings and a fabulously smeared, echoing guitar solo. Something starts to happen, something very 1970s. And I mean that in a good way.

[SOMETHING ELSE! REWIND: As we got set for Jeff Lynne’s two 2012 recordings, we dove back into some of our all-time favorite tracks from his time with the Electric Light Orchestra.]

See, just as you could count on Lynne’s forever-stuck visage (then, as now, aviator shades and space-man fro), there are certain elements associated with a prototypical ELO effort — and, by the time “Point of No Return” concludes, it’s all here. Ultimately, the song’s polyester-era charms — perfect, in their way, for an album that will be dominated by long-ago gems from the ELO catalog — simply become too much to resist.

“Point of No Return” will be part of Mr. Blue Sky: The Very Best Of Electric Light Orchestra, due on October 9, 2012 from Frontiers Records. Elsewhere, Lynne will include new versions of ELO favorites like its title track, “Livin’ Thing,” “Evil Woman,” and others.

Mr. Blue Sky is being released in tandem with Long Wave, an album of standards. A sneak-peek track from that project, the Armchair Theatre-ish “At Last, debuted this week on BBC Radio.

Both albums arrive as Electric Light Orchestra fans celebrate the group’s 40th anniversary. Lynne has said he will also oversee an expanded reissue of ELO’s most recent studio recording, 2001’s Zoom — as well as Armchair Theater, Lynne’s 1990 solo debut.

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