Richard G. : Shortly after the passing of the brilliant organist and composer earlier this year, the countdown to the reissues of his solo work started. 'Before I Forget' from 1982 is the first album in what probably will be a string of re-releases. On the album with its funny cover design Lord was sailing off in a different direction and combined his beloved classical music with melodic hard rock. Especially the eight minutes long 'Bach On This' is a textbook example of symphonic rock based on an arrangement ('Tocatta & 'Fugue') by Johann Sebastian Bach.
In the years preceding the recording of this album, Lord was a member of Whitesnake but the blues and boogie-Woogie hard rock of that band is almost completely absent here. Only the opening track 'Chance On A Feeling' is material that one would expect to hear on a Whitesnake album. From the second song 'Tender Babes' onwards the Baroque and pop influences are omnipresent. Listeners are treated to frivolous melodies with a rocking rhythm section. So don't expect crunching Deep Purple riffs, but accessible and even nimble compositions that occasionally can endure a comparison with Richard Clayderman. Lord plays a prominent role on his organ, but never loses himself in excessive solos. Lord was not afraid to show his more mellow side and recorded melancholic and introverted piano pieces such as on the title track and 'Burntwood'. Songs like 'Say it's All Right' and 'Where Are You' can easily be classified as pop music. A variety of musicians worked on this album such as bassist Neil Murray (ex Whitesnake) who also wrote the liner notes, drummers Ian Paice and Cozy Powell, guitarists Mick Ralphs and Bernie Marsden and singers Sam Brown, Tony Ashton and Vicky Brown.
'Before I Forget' is a pleasant listening experience that in no way represents Lord's more serious solo work that peaked on albums like 'Sarabande', 'Pictured Within' and 'Beyond The Notes'. Let's hope we see a re-issue of the ingenious 'Sarabande' sometime soon.