Saturday, April 3, 2021

Elvis Costello - Almost Blue (1981)

Elvis Costello - Almost Blue (1981)

Tracklist front / back album covers

Elvis Costello - Almost Blue

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Side one

1. "Why Don't You Love Me (Like You Used to Do)?"   1:40

2. "Sweet Dreams"   3:00

3. "Success"   2:41

4. "I'm Your Toy"   3:23

5. "Tonight the Bottle Let Me Down"   2:09

6. "Brown to Blue"   2:40

Side two

1. "A Good Year for the Roses"   3:10

2. "Sittin' and Thinkin'"   3:02

3. "Color of the Blues"   2:21

4. "Too Far Gone"   3:28

5. "Honey Hush"   2:15

6. "How Much I've Lied"   2:55

Notes: "I'm Your Toy" was originally recorded by The Flying Burrito Brothers as "Hot Burrito #1" (on their 1969 album The Gilded Palace of Sin).

Bonus tracks (1994 Rykodisc)

"He's Got You" (Live) (Hank Cochran) – 4:07

"Cry! Cry! Cry!" (Live) (Johnny Cash) – 2:45

"There Won't Be Anymore" (Live) (Charlie Rich) – 2:23

"Sittin' and Thinkin'" (Live) (Charlie Rich) – 2:55

"Honey Hush" (Live) (Lou Willie Turner) – 2:31

"Psycho" (Live) (Leon Payne) – 3:36

"Your Angel Steps Out of Heaven" (Jack Ripley) – 1:58

"Darling, You Know I Wouldn't Lie" (Wayne Kemp, Red Lane) – 2:37

"My Shoes Keep Walking Back to You" (Lee Ross, Bob Wills) – 2:04

"Tears Before Bedtime" (Early Version) (Costello) – 2:27

"I'm Your Toy" (Live) (Gram Parsons, Chris Ethridge) – 3:49

Bonus disc (2004 Rhino)

"Stranger in the House" (duet with George Jones) – 3:39

"We Ought to Be Ashamed" (duet with Johnny Cash) (George Jones, Earl Montgomery) – 2:47

"Radio Sweetheart" (Live) – 3:15

"Stranger in the House" (Live) – 3:56

"Psycho" (Live) (Leon Payne) – 3:35

"If I Could Put Them All Together (I'd Have You)" (Live) (Even Stevens) – 2:28

"Motel Matches" (Live) – 2:21

"He'll Have to Go" (Live) (Joe Allison, Audrey Allison) – 2:51

"Girls Talk" (Live) – 1:46

"Too Far Gone" (Lost Session version) (Billy Sherrill) – 3:11

"He's Got You" (Lost Session version) (Hank Cochran) – 3:51

"Honky Tonk Girl" (Loretta Lynn) – 2:26

"That's Why I'm Walking" (Melvin Endsley, Stonewall Jackson) – 2:22

"Wondering" (Joe Werner) – 2:21

"Darling, You Know I Wouldn't Lie" (Wayne Kemp, Red Lane) – 2:37

"My Shoes Keep Walking Back to You" (Lee Ross, Bob Wills) – 2:04

"Blues Keep Calling" (Janis Martin) – 2.07

"Tears Before Bedtime" (Early Version) – 2:27

"Psycho" (Leon Payne) – 3:32

"Cry, Cry, Cry" (Johnny Cash) – 2:45

"I'll Take Care of You" (Brook Benton) – 3:11

"Your Angel Steps Out of Heaven" (Jack Ripley) – 1:59

"Brand New Heartache" (Live) (Felice Bryant, Boudleaux Bryant) – 2:29

"There Won't Be Anymore" (Live) (Charlie Rich) – 2:32

"Sittin' and Thinkin'" (Live) (Charlie Rich) – 2:51

"Honey Hush" (Live) (Lou Willie Turner) – 2:30

"I'm Your Toy" (Live) (Gram Parsons, Chris Ethridge) – 4:01

Elvis Costello Band Members / Musicians

Elvis Costello – vocals, guitar

The Attractions:

Steve Nieve – piano, organ

Bruce Thomas – bass

Pete Thomas – drums

John McFee – lead guitar, pedal steel guitar

Tommy Millar - violin

Nashville Edition - backing vocals

Ron "Snake" Reynolds - engineer

"Fast" Eddie Hudson - assistant engineer

Barney Bubbles - sleeve design

Keith Morris - photography

Almost Blue is the 5th album by Elvis Costello and the Attractions. It was recorded May 1981 in Nashville, and released on 23 October 1981. The record's songs consist entirely of country covers, including works originally written by Hank Williams, Merle Haggard, George Jones and Gram Parsons. It was Costello's first album not to be produced by Nick Lowe.

Contemporary critical reaction to Almost Blue was mixed, with Trouser Press labelling the album "surprisingly clumsy" and "a dud", while Robert Christgau gave it a grade of B- and Rolling Stone gave it an overall positive three-star review. In recent years, AllMusic rated it favourably, and Rhapsody praised the album, calling it one of their favourite cover version albums.

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