Review of For The Stars
NY Post, 2001-04-11
- Dan Aquilante
ELVIS & MEZZO-SOPRANO'S 'FOR THE STARS' GETS FOUR
By DAN AQUILANTE
April 10, 2001
ELVIS COSTELLO and ANNE SOFIE VON OTTER
"For the Stars"
For many rock stars, success is followed by a life sentence of repetition - as they replay and redo the thing that made them famous. Elvis Costello is the exception.
On his stunningly beautiful "For the Stars" - a collaboration with Swedish mezzo-soprano Anne Sofie von Otter - Costello is a million miles away from his youthful musings as the king of the New Wave. So if you're looking for "Get Happy II," this ain't it.
On "For the Stars," Costello provided the canvas for von Otter's golden voice with simple piano arrangements, stark production and his own distinctive voice - as part of the background.
Here, he relies on von Otter to make the musical points - letting her magnificent instrument do what his can't.
Since this isn't the kind of pop you'd expect from Elvis, the 18 songs of "For the Stars" require repeated listens for a full appreciation.
But the best things in life often don't come easy. And once you reset your ear to this effort - which features songs by Costello, Brian Wilson, Tom Waits, John Lennon, Paul McCartney and Ruben Blades - you realize the depth of emotion that this opera singer and pop icon reached together.
Copyright 2001 NYP Holdings, Inc. All rights reserved.