Review of concert from 2002-07-22: Liverpool, Kings Dock - with
Liverpool Echo, 2002-07-23
- Mike Chapple
|El Magnifico: Elvis in full flight
The big top player whose aim is true
by Mike Chapple, Liverpool Echo
AS a demonstration of power this was a blistering home town gig from
the adopted Scouser.
A mere four-piece of Elvis, former Attractions Steve Nieve on keyboards/melodica
and Pete Thomas on drums, plus bass player Davey Farragher, surely didn't
have the fire power to fill the Big Top.
But they did, and just like a mighty gas burner turned up full blast
inside a hot air balloon, they rose to the occasion with Nieve pumping
out a full catechism of soundtrack aromatics more akin to the John Barry
It was worthy backing for a man possessed, who can still snarl with
the intensity of someone to keep a wide berth from on the last drunks'
train home from Central station.
With an astute eye he balanced the old crowdpleasers - Watching the
Detectives, I Don't Wanna Go To Chelsea - with the new, Dust and Spooky
Girlfriend from the latest album When I Was Cruel being especially noteworthy
additions to the mammoth Costello canon.
Never have songs about guilt, blame, betrayal and emotional obsession
sounded so good, delivered in that stylised but so very individual yearning
voice that stayed pitch perfect through two hours-plus of non-stop heavy
He even made time for some good natured song introductions spliced
with cutting remarks about Tony Blair and George Bush. The most ironic
cheer, however, came when this most fanatical of Reds fans claimed he
was tempted to play Todd Rundgren's I Saw The Light in tribute to Gerard
Houllier's decision to give Lee Bowyer the bum's rush.
He didn't, but other classics did follow and when he returned for the
first of a clutch of encores including a spine-tingling Almost Blue
and a beautifully extended Alison there surely wasn't a dry eye in the
house, sorry, tent.
This was thoughtful, contemporary pop music at its very best and if
the Liverpool manager had witnessed it he would have deemed that this
was indeed a player at the very height of his game.
© owned by or licensed to Trinity Mirror Plc 2002