Trust (1994) liner notes

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Liner notes



Elvis Costello

Trust was recorded in late October and early November of 1980 at DJM Studios near Holborn, although we inevitably returned to Eden Studios for the Final sessions.

The cast and content of the album was determined by events during 1980. By the end of the "GET HAPPY" tour, in which we played only seaside towns and places not usually on the concert circuit (and in some cases found out why!), my self-induced fatigue had convinced me to take the melodramatic decision to quit show business. Steve Nieve then departed for California where he was a passenger in a serious car accident. However by the time this occurred I had come to my senses and decided to fulfill the commitment to a European tour. With Steve unable to rejoin the band for some time we decided to make no attempt to find a keyboard deputy. My first solution involved the purchase of a Marshall stack and three hundred effects pedals and fuzz boxes. The debut of "The Elvis Costello Experience" was a disaster which very few of the traumatized Channel Islanders, who were subjected to it, are willing to talk about. For the remaining dates in Europe we were joined on guitar by The Rumour's Martin Belmont, who masterfully learned our adapted repertoire in doubletime.

Apart from my mercifully brief lunges at a Vox Continental the two-guitar line-up continued to make ragged progress. Martin was later called in to add his guitar to "From A Whisper To A Scream".

Around this time I had become friendly with members of Squeeze who, like Steve Nieve, came from the mysterious lands of South East London unknown to those of us based in the west. It was soon agreed that, shortly after finishing Trust, Roger Bechirian and I would co-produce the album that was to become "East Side Story". Chris Difford and I were already making plans to write together, when Glenn Tilbrook offered to help out by singing a guide track after I had lost my voice during the recording. Despite recovering quickly I took the opportunity to ask Glenn to share the vocal on "From A Whisper To A Scream".

Elvis and the Attractions' touring had been restricted to Europe apart from a headlining appearances at the "Heatwave" festival (with The Pretenders, B52s and Talking Heads) near Toronto in August. However following the release of the twenty track Get Happy in February, the total for the year was brought up to forty with the U.S. release of "Taking Liberties". This compilation of B-sides and outtakes was designed to make available the many additional tracks generated by the faster release schedule in Britain (And also to kill the exploitive trade in import singles!).

A modified version of the record was later issued on F-Beat as 10 How's your fathers and 10 Bloody Marys (firstly on cassette only and later, on Demon, in all formats). In current re-issue programme the tracks included on these releases can be located on the "Extended Play" bands of the relevant album.

Trust contains some of my oldest songs, at least in terms of words and music written before 1976. Many of the lines in "New Lace Sleeves" and "Watch Your Step" were written when I was twenty. The song "Different Finger" was written a year later. However, more recently, after buying a piano, I had written "Shot With His Own Gun".

The sessions themselves were often frantic, swinging from elation to despair, for which I must take most of the blame. However the finished record seems to contain many of the Attractions' best performances, especially "Strict Time", "Lover's Walk", "White Knuckles", and "New Lace Sleeves".

I managed to finish the album with a solo session for the newly re-written song "Big Sister's Clothes". After grappling with the world's first and only "backwards" accordion (a clearer head might have told me it would sound almost identical to a "forwards" accordion), I went for a little lie down in a cool dark room."

Extended Play

Black Sails In The Sunset -- "A minor relative of "Oliver's Army" which was first recorded for Get Happy in a piano and vocal arrangement (now lost). This version was removed from the album sequence, as I believed we might still record a superior version. However the song never seemed fit into any subsequent album."
Five years later this version was released as the B-side of "Tokyo Storm Warning".

Big Sister -- "We used a figure borrowed from the Rolling Stones' "Under My Thumb" for this arrangement, which was included in the original sequence before being deleted to make way for the "Big Sister's Clothes."
Released in 1982 as the b-side of "You Little Fool"

Sad About Girls (DJM Studios) -- "This Brain/Hart composition was first heard on The Attractions album "Mad About the Wrong Boy", which was recorded in the summer of 1980. It was one of a couple of Steve Nieve tunes that we played from time to time."
"Trust" outtake. Never previously released.

Twenty-Five To Twelve (Eden Studios) -- "The first in a continuing series illustrating the crooked path that a song may take to it's final resting place. The track, Which owes more than a little to David Bowie's "Heroes", was an unsuccessful experiment, but the words and music went on and ....on. See below.
"Trust" outtake. Never previously released.

Love For Sale (Eden Studios) -- "This Rather Bizarre reading of the Cole Porter song was recorded shortly after "Trust" with Rockpile's Billy Bremmer on Spanish guitar."
Never Previously Released.

Weepers Dream (Eden Studios) -- "A short instrumental written around 1973"
Never Previously released.

Gloomy Sunday -- "A favourite song of mine which was recorded to pass the time at September Sound Studios, Huddersfield during the "Trust" tour."
Never Previously Released.

Boy With A Problem (Eden Studios) -- "A version, with my own piano accompaniment, of this newly completed song, featuring Chris Difford's entire lyric before I made the small amendments which are heard on the "Imperial Bedroom" recording."
Never Previously Released.

Seconds Of Pleasure -- "Continuing the story of the song which was originally "25 to 12". This demo recording from Pathway Studios presents the song as a ballad with amended lyrics and an entirely new chorus and title. To be continued on future releases..."
Never Previously Released.

-- Elvis Costello


Trust liner notes (1994)

Elvis Costello's liner notes for the 1994 Rykodisc/Demon reissue of Trust.


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