Well worth the three-hour trip up the M40/M42/M6 Toll/M56!
As I didn't fancy the Kew Gardens show I took the opportunity to visit the Bridgewater Hall with its superb sound.
I had been drooling over the setlist from the US solo shows and tonight's 2½ hour set didn't let me down.
Old faves like "Veronica," "Red Shoes" and "Shipbuilding" mixed with rarities — "Dr Luther's Assistant" for the first time since 1977; "B Movie" reappears, lost since 1982.
New tracks, from 30 recently penned with Burt Bacharach, to selections from last year's Wise Up Ghost, show there's life in the old dog yet.
With his mini guitar army and keyboard the encore stretched for longer than the main set, as even though the recent Spinning Songbook shows mixed things up, Elvis took the opportunity to go off piste. He punctuated the set with little tales about the songs, the careers of his father and grandfather as musicians, and you feel that Elvis is coming to terms with his place in that long personal and social history.
Well-behaved and reverential. A few calls for songs were granted although "That Day Is Done" ("is that a request or observation?") was not delivered. The enthusiasm shown was rewarded with more and more songs. Thanks to Steve T and BluePaul for their company.
It made me think:
This is my umptreethrumpth Costello show and he still has the power to surprise, revitalize old songs and be the beloved entertainer. Not sure if he has a setlist anywhere but in his head but it was thrilling tonight when the detour sign came alight.