In response to the album title; I'm happy, Nick Love says he's happy, I'm sure CBS is happy, but is Elvis happy?
You would think so, but as evidenced by the lyrics, he hasn't changed since his first Lp. Elvis is still angry! You would think since his last album Armed Forces made the top 10 and went gold he might be sticking to what got him there. Which kind of sums up this Lp. No real new ground broken, just 20 songs, most of which are about his relationships with women.
That's right 20 songs! It's like a double album on one disc; and for once it's great to say "the side never seems to end!" If you're worried about the sound quality, don't because it's excellent.
As with the lyrics the music isn't really any different from his previous Lps. There's just more of it. There are songs that sound like they could fit on each of his other Lps. "Black and White World" and "Opportunity" sound like My Aim Is True. "Five Gears in Reverse" and "Beaten to the Punch" could be from This Year's Model. The trio of "King Horse," "Possession" and "Man Called Uncle" remind me of Armed Forces, mainly because of the heavy use of piano.
Besides the piano, Elvis is playing guitar again, the most he's played since his first. "Five Gears in Reverse" even has a short solo! This is one of the reasons I like Get Happy more than his last. He seems to be more a part of the band again.
Nick Lowe's production is varied throughout the Lp with Elvis' voice mixed differently on almost every cut. And his lyrics are still first-rate.
All in all, it's a step forward for Costello: the more "mature" vocals (maybe the meeting with his hero George Jones?), and the band is tighter than ever. Maybe E.C. won't be happy 'til he's got a number 1 record. Make him