Billboard, April 27, 2002

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When I Was Cruel

Elvis Costello

Bradley Bambarger

Rhino's splendid refurbishment of Costello's catalog shouldn't divert listeners from the fact that he is one of the rare artists of his generation to grow more adventurous with time. With his first solo set in seven years — following projects with the likes of Burt Bacharach and classical singer Anne Sofie von Otter — Costello proves that all the balladry hasn't dulled his ability to rock. The metaphoric pop manifesto "45" bristles with verbal acuity and the singer's own whiplash electric guitar, as does the single. "Tear Off Your Own Head (It's a Doll Revolution)." "When I Was Cruel No. 2" manages to quote ABBA and Erik Satie even as it works in self-deprecating digs at aging rockers and aging critics. His partners include Attractions Steve Naïve and Pete Thomas, plus well-chosen young guns. But it's this old dog who's full of new tricks.

Tags: When I Was Cruel45When I Was Cruel No. 2Tear Off Your Own Head (It's A Doll Revolution)Steve NaïvePete ThomasThe AttractionsTonight At Noon... Three Or Four Shades Of LoveMingus Big BandSy JohnsonInvisible LadyFezABBARhinoBurt BacharachAnne Sofie von Otter

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Billboard, April 27, 2002

Bradley Bambarger reviews When I Was Cruel.

Steven Graybow notes the release of Tonight At Noon... Three Or Four Shades Of Love by the Mingus Big Band.


When I Was CruelTonight At Noon... Three Or Four Shades Of Love by the Mingus Big Band

Jazz Notes

Steven Graybow

The Charles Mingus Big Band's Tonight at Noon... Three or Four Shades of Love (Dreyfus, released April 9) contains 10 of the late bassist's compositions, tied together by a common theme of amour. One piece, the Sy Johnson-arranged "Love's Fury," was previously unrecorded. Elvis Costello penned new lyrics for Mingus' "Invisible Lady," on which he sings. The Mingus Big Band, which holds court each Thursday night at New York club Fez, is now entering its second decade as an ongoing ensemble.

2002-04-27 Billboard cover.jpg


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