Almost You: The Songs of Elvis Costello

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Editorial Reviews

All Music Guide - Tim Sendra
Amazingly, with the flood of tribute records that has washed over record stores in the past few years, this is the first newly recorded tribute to the songs of Elvis Costello. The 15 artists and bands are strictly indie rock, many of them from the American south. Most of the tracks they cover are from Costello's early salad days as an angry young man three from My Aim Is True, one from This Year's Model, two from Armed Forces, one from Trust, three from Get Happy!!, and one from Imperial Bedroom with a couple from later records one from Blood & Chocolate, three from King of America, and one from Brutal Youth. As with any tribute collection, you are going to find the ...
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Editorial Reviews

All Music Guide - Tim Sendra
Amazingly, with the flood of tribute records that has washed over record stores in the past few years, this is the first newly recorded tribute to the songs of Elvis Costello. The 15 artists and bands are strictly indie rock, many of them from the American south. Most of the tracks they cover are from Costello's early salad days as an angry young man three from My Aim Is True, one from This Year's Model, two from Armed Forces, one from Trust, three from Get Happy!!, and one from Imperial Bedroom with a couple from later records one from Blood & Chocolate, three from King of America, and one from Brutal Youth. As with any tribute collection, you are going to find the good, the bad, and the imitators. Most of the groups here don't take many liberties, but only a couple go for full-on imitations; Fastball's Tony Scalzo's vocals sound eerily like a young Costello on a reverent take of "Busy Bodies," and Grand Champeen attempts to rock out on "No Action," but despite the volume and good intentions, sounds about one-tenth as mean and messed up as Costello's original. There are plenty of good interpretations to be found here. Matt Pond PA kicks off the disc with the best track here, a lovely cello-driven take on "Green Shoes," with Matt Pond's vocals recalling the snarling spirit of Costello without aping him. Damnation's take on Brutal Youth's "Still Too Soon to Know" is spare and beautiful, featuring a wrenching lead vocal from Deborah Kelly. "Alison" is a song that could easily lend itself to mawkishness, but Vic Chesnutt and Jack Logan do a fairly straightforward, un-over-emotional version backed by guitar and piano. Lil' Cap'n Travis gives "Blue Chair" from Blood & Chocolate a sweeping orchestral country feel with plenty of swooping pedal steel and a healthy dose of glockenspiel. One of the delights of a good collection like this is discovering new bands. Lil' Cap'n Travis is one to keep an eye out for. Fellow obscure indie group the Deathray Davies turn in a spirited take on "Men Called Uncle" and the Mendoza Line end the record in fine style with a Shannon McArdle-sung version of "Sleep of the Just" from King of America that should send listeners straight out to buy all of the Mendoza Line's fine records. There are not really any bad tracks, only a few that don't work very well in context; Brenda Kahn over-sings on "Watch Your Step," Tywanna Jo Baskette monotonally under-sings on "Just a Memory," Okerrvil River's wavering, over-emotional vocals sink an otherwise interesting version of "Riot Act," and Kev Russell's Junker's yodeling version of "Indoor Fireworks" isn't bad really, it just sounds out of place here. Four less-than-great songs don't sink this ship, however. It is a highly listenable disc throughout and sometimes even quite good. Costello should be proud and anyone who is a fan should be sure to check this collection out.
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Product Details

  • Release Date: 1/21/2003
  • Label: Glurp Records
  • UPC: 656605509624
  • Catalog Number: 133

Tracks

Disc 1
  1. 1 Green Shirt - matt pond PA (2:19)
  2. 2 (The Angels Wanna Wear My) Red Shoes - Hem (2:24)
  3. 3 Busy Bodies (3:32)
  4. 4 No Action (1:58)
  5. 5 Still Too Soon to Know (2:43)
  6. 6 Alison - Mr. & Mrs. Keneipp (3:28)
  7. 7 Blue Chair - Lil' Cap'n Travis (4:15)
  8. 8 Watch Your Step (3:33)
  9. 9 Beyond Belief (3:38)
  10. 10 Men Called Uncle (2:22)
  11. 11 Indoor Fireworks - Kevin Russell (4:44)
  12. 12 Just a Memory - Tywanna Jo Baskette (3:21)
  13. 13 Riot Action (4:40)
  14. 14 Sleep of the Just (3:51)
  15. 15 [Untitled Track] (4:01)
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Album Credits

Performance Credits
Brenda Kahn Vocals
Vic Chesnutt Vocals
Jack Logan Vocals
Jon Auer Vocals
Brian Beattie Hammond Organ
Kelly Keneipp Guitar
Tony Scalzo Organ, Bass, Guitar, Vocals
Joey Shuffield Drums
Bill Shupp Drums
Jeff Johnston Acoustic Guitar, Piano, Glockenspiel, Vocals, Saw
The Mendoza Line Organ, Bass, Guitar, Sampling, Loops
Amy Boone Piano, Vocals
Gary Maurer Guitar, Mandolin
Mark Brotter Drums
Eve Miller Cello
Shannon McArdle Vocals
Gary Newcomb Pedal Steel Guitar, Vocals
Rob Halverson Guitar, quatro
Nikki Keneipp Piano
Jonathan Meiburg Wurlitzer
Jim Hostetter Cello
Deborah Kelly Acoustic Guitar, Vocals
Channing Lewis Guitar, Trumpet, Vocals
Michael Crow Bass, Fiddle, Guitar, Trumpet, Vocals
Ned Stewart Drums
Matt Pond Vocals
Matt Raisch Bass
Jim Kehoe Electric Guitar
Philip McEachern Organ
Dan Messe Piano
Steve Curtis Guitar
Sally Ellyson Vocals
Tawnya Lorae Bass
Tywanna Jo Baskette Vocals
Zachary Thomas Bass
Greg Price Keyboards
Catherine Popper Upright Bass
Rob Bernard Bass Drums, Guitar (Baritone)
Mark Pedini Drums
Aaron Kelley Guitar
Kim Powell Drums, Background Vocals
Technical Credits
Brenda Kahn Producer
Elvis Costello Composer
Jon Auer Engineer, Instrumentation
Brian Beattie Producer, Engineer
Clay Jones Producer, Engineer, Instrumentation
Declan MacManus Composer
Billy Stull Mastering
Tony Scalzo Producer
Eric Zappa Executive Producer
Jeff Johnston Engineer
The Mendoza Line Producer
Gary Maurer Producer
Geoff Sanoff Engineer
Okkervil River Producer
Ted "Zaney" Gainey Engineer
Brian McTear Producer, Engineer
Grand Champeen Engineer
Michael Crow Producer, Engineer
Lil' Cap'n Travis Producer
Dan Messe Producer
Burnside Project Producer
Aaron Kelley Engineer
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Customer Reviews

Average Rating 4
( 3 )
Rating Distribution

5 Star

(1)

4 Star

(1)

3 Star

(1)

2 Star

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1 Star

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Sort by: Showing all of 3 Customer Reviews
  • Anonymous

    Posted October 1, 2010

    S'Ok

    All the versions of Elvis songs here are ok. In fact, the Damnations TX do a fine job; but, I can't help thinking that Tasmin Archer did a much better job covering Elvis Costello songs on her 'Shipbuilding'EP. Go find it - its brilliant!

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  • Anonymous

    Posted October 1, 2010

    Elvis should be proud

    nice diverse collection of Elvis covers. I like that obscure and well known material was done.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Anonymous

    Posted September 14, 2010

    No text was provided for this review.

Sort by: Showing all of 3 Customer Reviews