National Ransom

National Ransom

3.2 4
by Elvis Costello
     
 

Elvis Costello has worn willful eclecticism as a badge of honor for so long that his decision to retain the same essential support and sound for 2010's National Ransom as he did for its 2009 predecessor Secret, Profane & Sugarcane means something. Building upon a foundation instead of beginning another journey suggests that he knows he has a fruitfulSee more details below

Overview

Elvis Costello has worn willful eclecticism as a badge of honor for so long that his decision to retain the same essential support and sound for 2010's National Ransom as he did for its 2009 predecessor Secret, Profane & Sugarcane means something. Building upon a foundation instead of beginning another journey suggests that he knows he has a fruitful collaboration with producer T-Bone Burnett and a good band with the Sugarcanes, who are now melded with the Imposters to give this Americana -- equal parts roots-rock, country, and pre-war balladry -- some serious kick. Secret, Profane and National Ransom share some superficial sonic characteristics, but the former played as a clearinghouse of odds and ends, while National Ransom is a purposeful album, its themes elegantly meshing together and carrying considerable momentum. Costello deliberately stays in familiar territory, often recalling his first Burnett-produced record, King of America, but he's not churning out familiar songs -- complacency is anathema to him, of course -- he's using the familiar sounds to provide context for the present. In a conceit that's a shade too clever, he's presented a year where each song takes place, but that's a bit of misdirection, too, because modern-day tales sound ancient and vice-versa, not unlike Dylan's latter-day albums. Costello shares a similar love of Tin Pan Alley songcraft as Dylan, but he favors bluegrass to blues and betrays a little bit of artful affectation when he writes a '20s shuffle like "A Slow Drag with Josephine" or a ballad like "You Hung the Moon," but that's part of his charm: a Costello album without such punning tricks is a bit of a drag. And while National Ransom doesn't rage like This Year's Model, it does tap into that same sense of rage on its title track, and Costello gives guitarist Marc Ribot plenty of room to strangle out notes, giving this a far less stuffy feel than Secret, Profane & Sugarcane. Ribot's manic fretwork ties this to Costello's dense turn-of-the-'90s albums for Warner, so the album winds up with trace echoes of all eras of Costello, but that's only a reflection of how National Ransom is a masterwork in the traditional sense: he's summoned all his skills to deliver an album that summarizes his world view.

Read More

Product Details

Release Date:
11/02/2010
Label:
Hear Music
UPC:
0888072321427
catalogNumber:
32142
Rank:
52865

Tracks

Read More

Album Credits

Performance Credits

Elvis Costello   Primary Artist,Acoustic Guitar,Bass Guitar,Vocals,Track Performer,farfisa organ,Fender Telecaster,Vocal Harmony
Jerry Douglas   Dobro,Lap Steel Guitar
Jim Lauderdale   Vocal Harmony
Leon Russell   Piano
Marc Ribot   Acoustic Guitar,Banjo,Electric Guitar
Bruce Dukov   Violin,Concert Master
Steve Nieve   Piano,Celeste,Vox Continental,Hammond B3
Mike Compton   Mandolin,Vocal Harmony
Dennis Crouch   Double Bass
Stuart Duncan   Fiddle,Violin,Electric Violin,Electric Viola
Vince Gill   Vocal Harmony
Darrell Leonard   Trumpet,Flugelhorn,Bass Trumpet
Buddy Miller   Guitar (Electric Baritone),Vocal Harmony
Ira Nepus   Trombone
Tom Peterson   Bass Clarinet,Alto Flute,Baritone Saxophone
Maurice Spears   Bass Trombone
Pete Thomas   Percussion,Drums
Mike Piersante   Shaker
Jeff Taylor   Piano,Accordion,Low Whistle
Caroline Campbell   Violin
George Bohanon   Trombone,Baritone Horn
Andrew Duckles   Viola
Neel Hammond   Violin
Lucia Micarelli   Violin
Radu Pieptea   Violin
Dave Eggar   Cello
Matthew Funes   Viola
Tim Lauderdale   Vocal Harmony

Technical Credits

Jim Lauderdale   Composer
Elvis Costello   Arranger,Composer,Horn Arrangements,String Arrangements,Whistle
Leon Russell   Composer
Jill Dell'Abate   String Contractor
T Bone Burnett   Composer,Producer
Darrell Leonard   Horn Arrangements
Drew Bollman   Engineer
Gavin Lurssen   Mastering
Mike Piersante   Engineer
Joey Turner   Engineer
Paul Ackling   Guitar Techician
Jason Wormer   Engineer
Curtis Laur   Guitar Techician
Kyle Ford   Engineer
Vanessa Parr   Engineer
Darrell Gilmour   Management
Larissa Collins   Art Direction
Tony Millionaire   Illustrations
Steve Macklam   Management
Sam Feldman   Management

Read More

Customer Reviews

Average Review:

Write a Review

and post it to your social network

     

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

See all customer reviews >