Exposé Online banner

Robert Berry — Pilgrimage to a Point
(Cyclops CYCL 019, 1993/1995, CD)

by Mike Grimes, Published 1995-11-01

Pilgrimage to a Point Cover art

Robert Berry has been making music around the San Francisco Bay Area for about 20 years now – maybe longer. Probably his only national attention came during the late 80s when he teamed up with Keith Emerson and Carl Palmer for the album 3 and the tour which followed. Since then, I know that he has played several times around San Jose, opening for the likes of The Chris Squire Experiment and some other progressive acts, performing tunes from the 3 album and other original material. Pilgrimage to a Point contains two tracks co-written with Emerson and Palmer from a never released second 3 album, as well as two tracks co-written with Steve Howe for a never released second GTR album. There's also one track included that Berry submitted to ELP when they reunited for the Black Moon album which didn't end up on that record. So, basically most all the songs on Pilgrimage to a Point were to be on albums by other groups which Berry was affiliated with, but they weren't, so here they are now. Got it?

The excellent liner notes give a detailed walk through Berry's musical life over the past 10 years, including his stints with Emerson, Palmer, and Howe. The notes even include a Pete Frame style "family tree" with Berry's appropriate ties to ELP, Yes, ...etc and photos too. The songs are very much in the "3" vein – not overly progressive, but certainly more interesting harmonically and rhythmically than typical pop / rock music. A couple of tracks are really poppy, especially the untitled surprise track number 13. It has extremely strong Beatles ties and another track, "The Otherside," sounds like it could be Air Supply. Berry is clearly a song craftsman. His songs are well developed and produced, with all parts serving a purpose. He seems like the type guy that would spend hours working on a three second back up harmony vocal line to make sure it was just right. Oddly, though the liner notes are extensive, there are no musician credits given. It makes me wonder if there are any "special guests" on the CD. The two tracks co-written with Steve Howe either feature Steve himself on guitar, or someone playing his licks note for note – particularly the opening track "No One Else to Blame." Likewise, a lot of the keyboards are very much in the Emerson style – down to the Roland D-50 patches he was using around the time of 3. Fans of 3 and GTR would like this collection, but people who don't like either of those bands probably won't like this much. Interestingly, there's mention of a new band "Alliance" in the notes which Berry apparently joined in 1993 with former Sammy Hagar and Night Ranger band members, but I've heard no more about them since.


Filed under: Reissues, Issue 8, 1995 releases, 1993 recordings

Related artist(s): Robert Berry

Latest news

2018-11-02
Charles O'Meara (C.W. Vrtacek) RIP – A true musical original has left us. Charles O'Meara, who recorded under the name C.W. Vrtacek, was a wild-card musical talent, ranging from complex progressive rock to introspective modern compositions, with stops at many places inbetween. » Read more

2018-10-17
Eurock Documentary Seeks Funding – We've been fans and fellow travelers with Archie Patterson and his Eurock project on the journey to discover great music. After many years of promoting and trying to spread the word,a new phase is beginning: a documentary film. Things like this don't just happen, and money does not magically appear to make it happen, so it's up to the fans to get it done. » Read more

2018-09-29
Marty Balin RIP – One of the architects of the 60s psychedelic sound of San Francisco has died at the age of 76. Marty Balin was a singer, songwriter, and guitarist who was one of the founders of Jefferson Airplane. After the split of the original Airplane, Balin went on to form the highly successful Jefferson Starship. » Read more

2018-09-25
Help the Psychic Equalizer Avoid Extinction – Last year we reviewed the debut album by Psychic Equalizer, a musical project of Hugo Selles. He's now working on the ambitious follow-up to that release, and is seeking funding from listeners around the world. » Read more

2018-09-05
Krautrock Documentary Seeks Funding – The next installment of the Progressive Warriors documentary series will focus on the vast body of music that falls under the banner of "krautrock." As most of our readers will know, previous films have tackled RIO and the Canterbury scene, as well as what we might call "mainstream" prog rock. » Read more


Previously in Exposé...

Tony Scheuren - Gaining on You – Scheuren began his recording career back in the late 60s with the band Chamaeleon Church, and was later, along with Ted Myers, one of the principal songwriters in the final edition of Boston based...  (2003) » Read more



Listen & discover



Print issues