London Times, October 24, 2010

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London Times

UK & Ireland newspapers

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National Ransom

Elvis Costello

Mark Edwards

Costello combines his signature sound with elements of Americana to produce one of his strongest albums in recent times

Although Elvis Costello has wandered through genres with gay abandon, his songwriting talent and his voice lend themselves most naturally to just two: the pumped, R&B-tinged rock with which he made his name and the Americana with which he flirts. Last year’s Secret, Profane & Sugarcane concentrated on the latter, but lacked good songs; National Ransom mixes both and is altogether more satisfying.

Backed by members of the Sugarcanes and the Imposters, and calling on guest contributions from Marc Ribot, Buddy Miller and Leon Russell, the sound is occasionally too dense, but the classic Costelloid melody of "Stations of the Cross," the Beatlesy inflections of "Church Underground" and the energetic title track lead a better collection of songs than we’ve had from the man for some time.

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The Sunday Times, October 24, 2010


Mark Edwards reviews National Ransom.


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