Honolulu Star-Bulletin, December 24, 1981

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Honolulu Star-Bulletin

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Almost Blue

Elvis Costello & The Attractions

Don McLeese / Chicago Sun-Times

That Elvis Costello has released an entire album of non-original country tunes should come as no big surprise. Costello has long championed country as one of his strongest musical passions, and George Jones as his major vocal influence. Working with Nashville producer Billy Sherrill and cutting tunes by Jones, Hank Williams, Gram Parsons, Charlie Rich, etc., must have seemed a labor of love.

Unfortunately, Almost Blue is only a partial success, and Costello's reverence for the material may be part of the problem.

While an occasional trick copped from the country masters generally has made Elvis's own material sound even more heartfelt, the more studied emulations of his mentors here seem far too mannered. Costello and the Attractions sound surprisingly stiff on the uptempo renditions of "Why Don't You Love Me (Like You Used To Do)" and "Honey Hush"; the weepers such as "A Good Year for the Roses" are more effective.

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Honolulu Star-Bulletin, December 24, 1981


Don McLeese reviews Almost Blue.

Images

1981-12-24 Honolulu Star-Bulletin page B-5 clipping 01.jpg
Clipping.

Page scan.
1981-12-24 Honolulu Star-Bulletin page B-5.jpg

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