I have been reviewing albums that somehow slipped under the radar but are worthy of widespread attention. Freudiana keeps in that vein, to a degree. It was only released in Europe and is now out of print, and it’s something of a collector’s item. The CD can be found on eBay, fetching an obscene amount. Its popularity is touted by the fact that it is mistakenly called the “lost Alan Parsons Project album.” Well, yes and no.
Alan Parsons and musical partner Eric Woolfson began work on their follow-up to 1987’s Gaudi, a concept album based on Sigmund Freud. The same musicians were used, Woolfson wrote the songs, Andrew Powell did the orchestration, and Parsons produced it, so in that respect it’s essentially an Alan Parsons Project album. However, during the time between Gaudi and the recording of Freudiana, Woolfson started leaning towards writing music for the stage, and this eventually lead to the end of Woolfson’s and Parsons’ partnership, and with it the Alan Parsons Project. The resulting album was released as Freudiana in 1990, with no indication of the band on the album. Freudiana is a soundtrack for Woolfson’s stage musical about Freud, but it also works well as a concept album, as the Alan Parsons Project was known for.
The production is slick and flawless, as one would expect from anything Alan Parsons does. As on past albums, Parsons uses different vocalists (including Eric Woolfson), which gives the album a variety.. British comedian Frankie Howerd even provides tongue-in-cheek vocals to a song called “Sects Therapy,” one of Woolfson’s songs better suited for the stage than an Alan Parsons Project album. Freudiana ranks beside other Alan Parsons Project albums.
Freudiana was the last collaboration between Parsons and Woolfson to date. Parsons went on to make other albums without Woolfson that are very much like the Alan Parsons Project. Woolfson followed his dream of writing musicals and gained fame in Europe. Woolfson even expanded upon the first Alan Parsons Album, a concept album about Edgar Allan Poe (Tales of Mystery and Imagination), with his own album, Poe.