Elvis Costello, who will be touring Australia again in December, reminds us of his peculiar genius on The Man (The Best Of Elvis Costello) (Liberation LIB5112). The prolific Irishman's entire output was reissued recently, which helps if any favorites are missing from this 18-track collection.
Two certainties are "Watching The Detectives," the catchy reggae about an obsessive TV fan, and the bittersweet "Alison." Costello is one of the most prolific pop songwriters. He may be erratic but, when he reels off tracks like "Oliver's Army" and "Everyday I Write The Book," he is frequently brilliant.
His finest song, "Shipbuilding," and its anti-Falkland War companion, "Pills And Soap," are included, but curiously there is nothing from last year's King Of America or Blood And Chocolate albums.