Uncut (p.98) - 4 stars out of 5 -- "[A] mix of hard rock, proto-glam, free-form saxes, bleating crumhorns and overdubbed 'I-Am-The-Walrus'-cellos which signaled the stylistic origins of ELO..."
Q (Magazine) (p.157) - 3 stars out of 5 -- "[Y]ou get heavy riffs between Black Sabbath and Cream, and a proggy liking for time changes."
This 1998 reissue contains 10 bonus tracks not on the original release.
All tracks have been digitally remastered.
Personnel: Jeff Lynne (vocals, guitar, piano, percussion); Roy Wood (guitar, slide guitar, sitar, cello, oboe, saxophone); Bev Bevan (drums, percussion).
Audio Remasterer: Ben Wiseman.
Liner Note Author: Roy Carr.
Recording information: Advision Studios, London; Philips Studios, London.
The Move's classic third album is often misunderstood, considered an awkward heavy metal bridge between the powerful mod-pop blasts of THE MOVE and SHAZAM! and the more subtle, classical influences of 1971's MESSAGE FROM THE COUNTRY. While the album does have a certain lumbering quality--only seven lengthy tracks--it's also surprisingly graceful. The first Move album to feature Jeff Lynne as leader Roy Wood's creative foil, LOOKING ON hints at the classical experiments of MESSAGE and Wood and Lynne's first album as the Electric Light Orchestra, with strings and oboe coloring the multi-part title track and "Feel Too Good." Meanwhile, the single "When Alice Comes Back to the Farm" features the sort of demented '50s updates Wood further explored in his post-ELO band Wizzard. Finally, there's the classic "Brontosaurus," an aptly-titled FM radio staple. This excellently remastered reissue gives due credit to an underrated gem.