I was in London when Elvis Costello thundered into the public arena. It was said by his promoters, before he had recorded anything of note, that he would be the voice of the late 70s and the 80s.
It seemed to me than that Mr Costello was more a voice in search of a medium than a prophet come to save us all from musical perdition.
The latest album then has me puzzled. He has, I have to say, done some excellent work but generally not consistently through an album. This is the second side of the c&w coin we talked about above. Costello's joined the rodeo crowd. This is Hank Williams' stuff, straighter and more sugary-sweet than the more distinguished work of Ms Harris.
There must be a reason Costello has gone Nashville.
If it is simply that he wanted to shock us all with the most unexpected of moves, then he could have done better by perhaps recording an album naked. Or doing a rock album based on Serbian folk music. Or marrying Pamela Stephenson.
As it is, all the man has done is to have produced a nasally, undistinguished, forgettable album.