Chicago Tribune, September 27, 1998

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Painted From Memory

Elvis Costello with Burt Bacharach

Greg Kot

Bacharach's arrangements for a 24-piece orchestra should make Babyface weep in envy. Bells chime in "The Sweetest Punch," strings zoom in "God Give Me Strength," horns say a little prayer in "Toledo." Unfortunately, Bacharach's tunes demand a certain vocal smoothness that Costello is ill-equipped to supply (paging Luther Vandross). Only when Costello stops straining for high notes and lets his poison valentines simmer inside the sweet orchestrations does this pairing of '60s lounge icon and '70s angry young man achieve a deliciously unsettling synthesis.

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Chicago Tribune, September 27, 1998


Greg Kot reviews Painted From Memory.


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