Elo Eldorado.jpg
Studio album by
Released28 September 1974
RecordedFebruary–August 1974
StudioDe Lane Lea Studios, London
GenreProgressive rock, progressive pop[1]
LabelWarner Bros., United Artists
ProducerJeff Lynne
Electric Light Orchestra chronology
The Night the Light Went On in Long Beach
Electric Light Orchestra studio album chronology
On the Third Day
Face the Music
Singles from Eldorado
  1. "Can't Get It Out of My Head"
    Released: November 1974
  2. "Boy Blue"
    Released: April 1975

Eldorado (subtitled A Symphony by the Electric Light Orchestra) is the fourth studio album by the Electric Light Orchestra (ELO). It was released in the United States in September 1974 by United Artists Records and in the United Kingdom in October 1974 by Warner Bros. Records.


Eldorado is the first complete ELO concept album; bandleader Jeff Lynne conceived the storyline before he wrote any music.[2] The plot follows a Walter Mitty-like character who journeys into fantasy worlds via dreams, to escape the disillusionment of his mundane reality. Lynne began to write the album in response to criticisms from his father, a classical music lover, who said that Electric Light Orchestra's repertoire "had no tune".[3][self-published source?] The influence of The Beatles is prevalent, especially in the melody of the verse of "Mister Kingdom" which to some degree resembles the Beatles' "Across the Universe".[citation needed]


Eldorado marks the first album on which Jeff Lynne hired an orchestra; on previous albums, he would overdub the strings.[2] Louis Clark co-arranged, with Lynne (and keyboardist Richard Tandy), and conducted the strings. The group's three resident string players continued to perform on recordings, however, and can be heard most prominently on the songs "Boy Blue" and "Laredo Tornado". Mike de Albuquerque departed early on in the recording process, as touring made him feel separated from his family. Lynne plays most of, if not all, the bass tracks and backing vocals for the album, but de Albuquerque still featured on the final release as well as getting credited. Kelly Groucutt replaced him for the subsequent tour, when cellist Melvyn Gale also joined (replacing the departing Mike Edwards). "Eldorado Finale" is heavily orchestrated, much like "Eldorado Overture". Jeff Lynne said of the song, "I like the heavy chords and the slightly daft ending, where you hear the double bass players packing up their basses, because they wouldn't play another millisecond past the allotted moment."[2][verification needed]

Release, reception and aftermath

Professional ratings
Review scores
Encyclopedia of Popular Music[5]
Music Story [7]
Rolling Stone(favourable)[8]
The Rolling Stone Album Guide[9]

"Can't Get It Out of My Head" was released as a single (with "Illusions in G Major" as the B-side) and was a success in the US.[10] An edited version of "Boy Blue" was released as the album's second single, but failed to make any commercial impact. The album was certified Gold in the United States soon after its release. The album and singles, however, failed to find a wide audience in the band's native United Kingdom.[citation needed]

In 1978, the filmmaker Kenneth Anger re-released his 1954 film Inauguration of the Pleasure Dome, using Eldorado as the soundtrack.[citation needed]

In July 2010, the album was named one of Classic Rock magazine's "50 Albums That Built Prog Rock".[11]

On 17 June 2015, the album was ranked #43 on Rolling Stone's "50 Greatest Prog Rock Albums of All Time"[12]

Track listing

All tracks are written by Jeff Lynne.

Side one
1."Eldorado Overture" (Instrumental)2:12
2."Can't Get It Out of My Head"4:21
3."Boy Blue"5:18
4."Laredo Tornado"5:29
5."Poor Boy (The Greenwood)"2:57
Side two
6."Mister Kingdom"5:50
7."Nobody's Child"3:40
8."Illusions in G Major"2:36
10."Eldorado Finale"1:20
Total length:39:03
CD reissue bonus tracks
11."Eldorado Instrumental Medley"7:56
12."Dark City"0:46


Additional personnel

Charts and certifications


Region Certification Certified units/sales
Canada (Music Canada)[21] Platinum 100,000^
United States (RIAA)[22] Gold 500,000^

^ Shipments figures based on certification alone.


  1. ^ "50 Greatest Prog Rock Albums of All Time". Rolling Stone. 17 June 2015. Retrieved 8 January 2019.
  2. ^ a b c Wild, David. "The Story of a Rock and Roll Band and the Pop Genius Who Dared to Go Baroque." Flashback.
  3. ^ "Jeff Lynne Song Database - Electric Light Orchestra - Can't Get It Out Of My Head song analysis". Jefflynnesongs.com. Retrieved 11 May 2019.
  4. ^ Eder, Bruce. "Eldorado – Electric Light Orchestra: Songs, Reviews, Credits, Awards". AllMusic. Retrieved 3 March 2013.
  5. ^ Larkin, Colin, ed. (2011). The Encyclopedia of Popular Music (5th edn). London: Omnibus Press. p. 915. ISBN 978-0-85712-595-8.
  6. ^ Graff, Gary; Durchholz, Daniel, eds. (1999). MusicHound Rock: The Essential Album Guide. Farmington Hills, MI: Visible Ink Press. p. 383. ISBN 1-57859-061-2.
  7. ^ "Acclaimed Music - Eldorado". acclaimedmusic.net. Archived from the original on 12 October 2017. Retrieved 11 May 2019.
  8. ^ Barnes, Ken (2 January 1975). "Electric Light Orchestra: Eldorado". Rolling Stone. Archived from the original on 16 February 2008.
  9. ^ Brackett, Nathan; Hoard, Christian, eds. (2004). The New Rolling Stone Album Guide (4th edn). New York, NY: Fireside/Simon & Schuster. p. 274. ISBN 0-7432-0169-8.
  10. ^ "ELO through the years: How the Electric Light Orchestra has changed over time".
  11. ^ Classic Rock magazine, July 2010, Issue 146.
  12. ^ (Posted: 17 June 2015) (17 June 2015). "50 Greatest Prog Rock Albums of All Time". Rollingstone.com. Retrieved 16 May 2018.
  13. ^ "Australian Album Chart Positions". Strange Magic. Australia. Retrieved 26 December 2020.
  14. ^ "Top RPM Albums: Issue 3900a". RPM. Library and Archives Canada. Retrieved December 26, 2020.
  15. ^ "Dutchcharts.nl – Electric Light Orchestra – Eldorado - A Symphony By The Electric Light Orchestra" (in Dutch). Hung Medien. Retrieved December 27, 2020.
  16. ^ "Charts.nz – Electric Light Orchestra – Eldorado - A Symphony By The Electric Light Orchestra". Hung Medien. Retrieved December 27, 2020.
  17. ^ "Electric Light Orchestra Chart History (Billboard 200)". Billboard. Retrieved December 26, 2020.
  18. ^ "CashBox Top 100 Albums" (PDF). CashBox. Vol. XXXVI #31. United States. 14 December 1974. p. 37. Retrieved 26 December 2020.
  19. ^ "Top Pop Albums of 1975". Billboard. Retrieved 26 December 2020.
  20. ^ "Number One Pop Albums" (PDF). Billboard. United States. 27 December 1975. p. 16. Retrieved 26 December 2020.
  21. ^ "Canadian album certifications – Electric Light Orchestra – Eldorado". Music Canada.
  22. ^ "American album certifications – Electric Light Orchestra – Eldorado". Recording Industry Association of America.