Before putting the album on the turntable, I took a long sigh and approached the challenge with a certain adolescent awesomeness. Half-way through the first cut, I noticed something was wrong with the way the record sounded. I checked the loudness button, but it was already on.
"Hmm...". I assumed it was in "Stereo Mono" switch. "Better switch it to Stereo." But it was already set for Stereo. Desperately, I looked to the bass knob seeing it was pumped all the way. "Wow," I gasped. "This is it?"
Oh Elvis! You can thank your lucky stars for the word:Relevance.' Without relevance, this would be a wicked sloppy album. Think of it: Basic Buffalo Springfield sounds, that haunting Doors Vox organ interwinding around each sound, the Four Tops. the Kings. the 60's . What a gas! What basic rawity! What tinny beach music! All this is great—I mean it. That's the wonder of relevance.
But in view of the Big Picture (i.e. the world, Bill board, and Beyond) I must ask myself, "Meize cochave ata Elvees?" What planet are you from. Elvis? We are existing on Earth, and this is the 1980's. Yes, the sixties were great but they are the past. If growth is the total accumulation of all experiences from birth on, why go back to the sixties and ignore the brilliant breakthroughs of the 70's. Get a new pair of glasses, Elvis. I'm sorry. now beat it!
Now let's talk fact.
Economically speaking, you just can't go wrong with this one.. When was the last time you bought a single disc with 20 cuts (17 of them previoualyy released)? If you add it all together you're getting about 40₵ a cut. and that isn't too bad in our petro-inflated economy. The songs range between 85 seconds up to 3:39 minutes in length, and consist of a solid sixties core. Its' sound is somewhat unique in that sound B-52/ Devoish in such cuts as "(I don't want to go to) Chelsea", and "Talking in the Dark." You'll hear true country-westren music in "Country Sweetheart" and "Stranger in the House." And you're sure to get a soft spot when listening to the love ballad, "Funny Valentine." The discs better cuts grow more so with listening saturation. But what doesn't? They include "Girl Talk". "Talking in the Dark". "Big Tears," and "Chelsea".
1 once heard it said that the New York Dolls played the best trash in America. I won't go quite that far here. Granted Taking Liberties will grow on you,(but who wants fungus?),because, if nothing else, this is to Elvis what Rubber Band was to David Bowie. Yet, there are better things that Elvis has pulled off successfully, too! But this disk stirs up inner desires tp buy a blow torch and a pair of goggles.
1 hope that Taking Liberties is Costello's last liberty. He's young, he has room to grow , and can go places. Let's hope he indeed realizes that "Clown Time is Over."