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Official Review [Album]: "HORIZON" (SP-4530)

Discussion in 'A Song For You: The Carpenters Forum' started by Chris May, Jun 1, 2013.


  1. ***** (BEST)

    41 vote(s)
  2. ****

    29 vote(s)
  3. ***

    9 vote(s)
  4. **

    2 vote(s)
  5. *

    2 vote(s)
  1. newvillefan

    newvillefan Well-Known Member

    I find it strange that the review lists Eventide as a top cut, when it's identical to Aurora :laugh:
    Jeff likes this.
  2. Rick-An Ordinary Fool

    Rick-An Ordinary Fool Well-Known Member

    Technically it's not identical. Lol
  3. I always thought the title of this Carpenters album might have been inspired by the jazz album series A&M introduced in early 1975:
    "From 1974–1978 the (Horizon Records) label became a subsidiary imprint of A&M Records for issuing jazz." - Wikipedia
  4. Mark-T

    Mark-T Well-Known Member

    Or it was inspired from "I Can Dream, Can't I?".
    jaredjohnfisher likes this.
  5. Jeff

    Jeff Well-Known Member

    Hi Chris May, with Karen Carpenter credited as Associate Producer of HORIZON what area of focus would she be involved in ....perhaps?
  6. newvillefan

    newvillefan Well-Known Member

    One search online brought up this description of record producer:

    "A producer has many roles that may include, but are not limited to, gathering ideas for the project, selecting songs or session musicians, proposing changes to the song arrangements, coaching the artist and musicians in the studio, controlling the recording sessions, and supervising the entire process".

    There's no evidence that Karen ever did any of that, aside from maybe voicing her opinions on songs or arrangements. I always thought the credit was a token gesture to her from her brother and/or the label.
    Jamesj75 likes this.
  7. Jeff

    Jeff Well-Known Member

    Yeah Stephen, I too saw it as a token gesture. Yet she received that token on several albums. I've gleaned over millenia that RICHARD had his fingers in everything. Right down to Karens phrasing. Just would like to think Karen Carpenter had a say in the mix at some point. No wonder she enjoyed her solo sessions.
    Jamesj75 likes this.
  8. Toolman

    Toolman Simple Man, Simple Dream

    I've seen references to Karen being the one who contacted some of the musicians invited to play on their albums (such as calling Tony Peluso, before he joined the touring band, to contribute to "Goodbye to Love"). I assumed that was her main contribution, although it could also refer to her serving as another set of ears after Richard had guided the principle tracking. I doubt it was entirely token.
    Jeff and Jamesj75 like this.
  9. Jeff

    Jeff Well-Known Member

    Good answer. I wonder what specifics in a studio setting that Karen had her hands associated with.
  10. A&M Retro

    A&M Retro Well-Known Member

    Wow. I've never once thought of Karen's Associate Producer role as token. Although Richard called the shots, Karen was completely involved with the creative process. As the years went by, I think her role increased due to Richard's illness, plus the fact that she knew so much more about the ways of the studio by that point. An example of this would be her solo album, in which she definitely played a big part in song selection, etc.
    ThaFunkyFakeTation and Jamesj75 like this.
  11. No doubt Karen also had quite a lot of input with the vocal stacking/harmonies (she had a say on Hurting Each Other, for example). Also, being a drummer, she must have had input on the "sound" of the rhythm section and how the drums were mixed perhaps.
    Graeme, Jamesj75 and Jeff like this.
  12. After watching Ron McMaster speak about mastering (his last name says it all!), I had a thought about Horizon. I wondered if its total (short) length had anything to do with Richard; purposely limiting its length so that it could be mastered with the very best sound.
  13. Mark-T

    Mark-T Well-Known Member

    Doing some desktop publishing today for a job due in two weeks. Tune on i-tunes, and Horizon comes up. What beautiful sounding collection. Karen sounds amazing! With Richard's powerful arrangements, they created a modern masterpiece.
  14. John Tkacik

    John Tkacik Active Member

    I think that HORIZON was the best album they created during Karen’s lifetime. The next best was CHRISTMAS PORTRAIT.
    Jamesj75 likes this.
  15. Jeff

    Jeff Well-Known Member

    I listened to HORIZON twice yesterday. One time original vinyl followed by the quad HORIZON. Somehow Solitaire was replayed 4 times. Impeccable vocals. So impressed was I yet again. So much so that I'm spinning HORIZON vinyl this instant as I write. Happy on the synthesizer. I'm Caught Between Goodbye and I Love You. Omgoodness...gotta dash kids.
    A&M Retro, CraigGA and Jamesj75 like this.
  16. A&M Retro

    A&M Retro Well-Known Member

    I listened to the quad version of ‘Solitaire’ today on the elliptical. I’m sure my blissful face turned a few heads.
  17. GaryAlan

    GaryAlan Well-Known Member

    Me....listening to...
    I Can Dream Can't I,
    all I can say is I really love this song, the arrangement, the vocals.....
    Horizon might be plodding to certain folks,
    but, it's another Carpenters' album which I listen to from beginning to end--
    no skipping......superb.....
    Jamesj75 likes this.
  18. Rumbahbah

    Rumbahbah Well-Known Member

    'I Can Dream...' is a great song, but the CD era has for me made Horizon even more plodding than it would have been on vinyl/cassette. Having 'I Can Dream...' followed by 'Solitaire' is way too much slow together.
    newvillefan likes this.
  19. Jamesj75

    Jamesj75 Well-Known Member

    @GaryAlan, I totally agree with your assessment of this great song!

    Funny anecdote: Last night I was listening to "I Can Dream Can't I," a song I've played countless times before (over 42+ years). It begins, "As we eye the blue horizon's bend." And then suddenly, BINGO! :idea: "Horizon!" "Horizon!" Whether an intended link to the album's title or a mere coincidence, I never made the connection before now. Could I really be this clueless for this many years? (Just a rhetorical self-analytical question. Please let's not make this point a discussion thread.... :) )
    Last edited: Jan 30, 2018
    BarryT60, GaryAlan and toeknee4bz like this.
  20. toeknee4bz

    toeknee4bz Well-Known Member

    You're not alone. Until I read your statement here, I never caught it either. What's ironic about this is HORIZON has always been my favorite Carpenters album. "I Can Dream, Can't I" was always my least favorite track, though. Don't get me wrong. It's not a 'bad' song, but it's just a bit too syruppy for my taste. So I usually skip over it.
    Jamesj75 likes this.
  21. Jamesj75

    Jamesj75 Well-Known Member

    Thanks for letting me know that I'm not alone, @toeknee4bz! At least, in your case, you haven't played the song as often... But we do agree that it's an outstanding album!
    toeknee4bz likes this.
  22. Chris May

    Chris May Resident 'Carpenterologist' Moderator Thread Starter

    Whenever I want that ONE song that is the quintessential low-register, rich and smoky hot buttered rum Karen we all know and love, this is the one I play. Don't get me wrong, there are a plethora of recordings showcasing Karen as we all know, but this one for some reason sits at the top of the heap for me! :)
  23. David A

    David A Well-Known Member

    I see Karen with bright red lipstick, standing on stage in front of one of those old-style over-sized mic's, sexy 50's dress, singing in a smoke-filled early 1950's nightclub. The ones where everyone is wearing a suit.
    Carpe diem and Jamesj75 like this.
  24. CraigGA

    CraigGA Well-Known Member

    100 % Agree!
    Chris May and Jamesj75 like this.
  25. I tend to believe the 'horizon' lyric in "I Can Dream, Can't I" was a reference to the album title, 'midway' through the record; "Aurora" representing the rising sun at the horizon line (at the opening of the album) and "Eventide" representing the sun setting at the horizon line (at the close of the album). Therefore, the album can be viewed as a complete day, from sunrise to sunset.
    Jamesj75 likes this.

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