My Flame Burns Blue - vinyl debut on BLUE VINYL , June 2016

Pretty self-explanatory
User avatar
Otis Westinghouse
Posts: 8849
Joined: Tue Jun 03, 2003 3:32 pm
Location: The theatre of dreams

Postby Otis Westinghouse » Mon Feb 20, 2006 11:32 am

CD-WOW finally sent mine last week. I'm kinda wishing I had followed John F's example and got the Japanese version - I'm missing the kick of Dust, and it does get a bit slow-paced at that point. I like the CD, it's a nice addition to the Costello-canon, but it's not quite as exciting as I'd hoped, or as the above review makes it sound. at least so far, maybe it'll be a 'gets better with each listen' experience, as John writes above. As I think someone wrote elsewhere, there's a sense of Elvis being almost in competition with the Orkest, something not quite clicking. I don't get the same pleasure hearing him do Almost Blue in this context as I do when it's just him plus Steve, or the Imposters, although the extended ending of AB is very nice indeed. I like Hora Decubitus a lot, a classic Mingus riff (which reminds me there must be some classic Mingus stuff I haven't heard yet); Favourite Hour is good; That's How You Got Killed Before is a case of Elv and MO blending very well, great fun; Episode of Blonde is excellent, really got me back into that song; the slower ones are all of interest, but are going to take some more listening; Clubland for me is a half-mistake: I love the bossa nova verse, but find the waltz of the chorus too stilted and awkward, making the whole song feel too fussy and clever-clever, which loses the impact of the original. I think it should just go all out for a less subtle big-band swing rhythm, retaining some rhythmic impact after the word 'clubland' (as opposed to the queasy fairgorund effects), but making for a more dramatic song. The sound quality is very good (and note John's points re mixing above with interest) and there are some very fine musicians in the Orkest.

Is this the first live Elvis LP release since El Mocambo?

What I don't get at all is why the version of Il Sogno is just a reduced one of the original. I guess it means the SLL et al folk who said they wouldn't be bothered getting Il Sogno will be happy to get most of it for free, but most of us will have it already, and it's not going to encourage people to buy the not much longer full thing, I would have thought. I lazily assumed it would be a live version, not just a repeat, not having read attentively here. At least that might have made people then go and buy the original. Just seems odd that they're increasing their manufacturing costs for no sales benefit nor fan incentive.
There's more to life than books, you know, but not much more

User avatar
verbal gymnastics
Posts: 10042
Joined: Wed Jun 11, 2003 6:44 am
Location: In a very fashionable hovel

Postby verbal gymnastics » Mon Feb 20, 2006 12:21 pm

I assumed that Il Sogno would be a edited live version.

It is Elvis' first live album since El Mocambo if you don't include the box set.
international laughing stock...

martinfoyle
Posts: 2500
Joined: Tue Jun 03, 2003 5:24 pm
Location: Dublin, Ireland
Contact:

Postby martinfoyle » Mon Feb 20, 2006 12:48 pm

It's his first since Deep Dead Blue

Image

Elvis doesn't seem to have much time for his live recordings, legitimate and non, which is too bad since there's loads of good stuff out there. Idealy he should make them available at http://www.archive.org , maybe someday he will.

User avatar
Otis Westinghouse
Posts: 8849
Joined: Tue Jun 03, 2003 3:32 pm
Location: The theatre of dreams

Postby Otis Westinghouse » Mon Feb 20, 2006 3:21 pm

Good point (regarding DDB).
There's more to life than books, you know, but not much more

User avatar
Otis Westinghouse
Posts: 8849
Joined: Tue Jun 03, 2003 3:32 pm
Location: The theatre of dreams

Postby Otis Westinghouse » Tue Feb 21, 2006 7:48 pm

Update: yes, it does indeed get better with every listen. I'm really enjoying it, and it does make you want to play it over and over. Great variety, great performances, and a great mix of the very familiar, the less familiar and the hitherto unknown. Excellent that the TJL reissue will contain the original recordings of Put Away Forbidden Playhings and Upon A Veil Of Midnight Blue.
There's more to life than books, you know, but not much more

johnfoyle
Posts: 14078
Joined: Wed Jun 04, 2003 4:37 pm
Location: Dublin , Ireland

Postby johnfoyle » Thu Feb 23, 2006 8:52 am

http://www.collegian.com/vnews/display. ... d59a3721d1

Colorado State Collegian

CD reviews

By Hailey McDonald
February 23, 2006

4 out of 5 rammies

Costello comes back with jazz group at side

Elvis Costello released his first record in 1977. With nearly 30 years of experience in the music industry, you have to expect quality from the man.

With his new album "My Flame Burns Blue," Costello teams up with a Dutch jazz orchestra to fashion the antiquated genre into a composition with a modern twist.

The title track originally recorded by Duke Ellington and known as "Blood Count" gives you a good feel where the older inspiration for the music on the album came from. For a more '60s mod approach, the track "Episode of Blonde" includes a splash of salsa and would be an excellent song to try out at your next cocktail or block party.

The music is perfect for a summer jazz concert or a cafe. It has the perfect amount of sultry melodies, but with some Costello pep as well. I vote the album replaces the carefully selected musical wonders from Michael Bolton and Kenny G in department store elevators.

Costello shines throughout the album, however, the orchestra should be attributed when it comes to the liveliness of the tunes. Musicians will be able to find an appreciation for the excellent compilation of jazz. Any group can throw together some random saxophone solos and mash awkward sounding keys together and call it jazz, but this combination truly crafts a compilation of what all jazz should be.

The album finishes with, none other than, "God Give Me Strength," the song that was performed by the team of Costello and Burt Bacharach (think: "Austin Powers: International Man of Mystery").

The new album will be released next Tuesday. If interested, it may be hard to seek out because it will be an imported album only.

User avatar
verbal gymnastics
Posts: 10042
Joined: Wed Jun 11, 2003 6:44 am
Location: In a very fashionable hovel

Postby verbal gymnastics » Thu Feb 23, 2006 12:08 pm

verbal gymnastics wrote:It is Elvis' first live album since El Mocambo if you don't include the box set.


martinfoyle wrote:It's his first since Deep Dead Blue


I was talking about "proper" albums :lol:
international laughing stock...

User avatar
Emotional Toothpaste
Posts: 420
Joined: Fri Feb 18, 2005 1:15 pm

Postby Emotional Toothpaste » Thu Feb 23, 2006 6:13 pm

Our public/non-profit radio station just played the new "Watching the Detectives" with the Metropole Orkest.

Double yuck! I almost had to turn it off.

User avatar
Otis Westinghouse
Posts: 8849
Joined: Tue Jun 03, 2003 3:32 pm
Location: The theatre of dreams

Postby Otis Westinghouse » Thu Feb 23, 2006 7:09 pm

Well it makes a change. It's not that bad, but it doesn't do much for me, I agree. Would highly recommend the CD, though. WTD probably sounds better in the context of the whole gig rather than in isolation.
There's more to life than books, you know, but not much more

johnfoyle
Posts: 14078
Joined: Wed Jun 04, 2003 4:37 pm
Location: Dublin , Ireland

Postby johnfoyle » Fri Feb 24, 2006 8:55 am

http://www.dailynews.com/entertainment/ci_3538672

Los Angeles Daily News

2/24/2006

ELVIS COSTELLO WITH THE METROPOLE ORKEST: "My Flame Burns Blue"
By Fred Shuster, Music Writer
U-Entertainment


How boring - another first-rate Costello album. This live package recorded in The Hague two years ago brings together previously unrecorded Costello numbers and some well-known titles in imaginative settings. Accompanied by long-standing keyboardist Steve Nieve and a full orchestra, Costello recasts the 14 songs as artful big-band/swing-jazz numbers.

"Clubland," then, becomes an atmospheric cha-cha, while "Watching the Detectives" moves from roots reggae to a full-blown cinematic piece reminiscent of parts of "West Side Story," and it's one of the most exciting arrangements we've heard in ages. Equally fine is the tender "Almost Blue," a gorgeous old-school ballad complete with cloudy strings and haunting harmonica and trumpet, and the set-closer, Costello's epic Burt Bacharach collaboration, "God Give Me Strength."

The package, in stores Tuesday, also includes a bonus disc of a 46-minute suite from "Il Sogno," Costello's score to an Italian dance adaptation of Shakespeare recorded with the London Symphony Orchestra.

C'mon, Elvis, make a lousy album for a change.

-------------------------------------------------------------------------------------

http://www.rockymountainnews.com/drmn/m ... 32,00.html

Michael Mehle, Rocky Mountain News

Elvis Costello, My Flame Burns Blue -

Costello reworked an array of his songs, old and new, for a live stand with a 52-piece Dutch jazz orchestra. So if you were pining to hear Watching the Detectives as a '50s film noir theme, your day has come.

johnfoyle
Posts: 14078
Joined: Wed Jun 04, 2003 4:37 pm
Location: Dublin , Ireland

Postby johnfoyle » Fri Feb 24, 2006 3:36 pm

http://www.orlandosentinel.com/entertai ... 3939.story

MUSIC REVIEW

Elvis Costello Live with the Metropole Orkest: My Flame Burns Blue (4 stars out of 5)

His aim is true, and his sound is jazzy

Jim Abbott

Orlando Sentinel Pop Music Critic

February 24, 2006

Elvis Costello just can't be pinned down.

After mingling blues and atmospheric country on The Delivery Man, Costello has morphed into a Frank Sinatra, of sorts, on the new My Flame Burns Blue (in stores Tuesday).

The album was recorded live with a 52-piece jazz orchestra in the summer of 2004 at the North Sea Jazz Festival, and it comes with a bonus disc of excerpts from Costello's Il Sogno ballet suite.

When I Was Cruel, this isn't. Fortunately, the exuberant presence of the Metropole Orkest ensures that Costello's jazz foray isn't as relentlessly subdued as the piano ballads of North. At different moments, Costello's blue flame ranges from fiery hot to warm and lovely.

It's a testament to Costello's ambition that the album opens with an adaptation of a Charles Mingus number, "Hora Decubitus,'' which is embellished by Costello's lyrics. He also adds words to the Billy Strayhorn-penned title track, which takes some audacity indeed.

The results, however, are impressive enough to justify the risk. "Hora Decubitus'" bounds between intensely rhythmic interludes and swaggering, big-band explosions with majestic style. Strayhorn's song is a moodier ballad that evolves from its lonely saxophone introduction into Costello's weary last-call singing.

Sandwiched among the reverent reinventions is the occasional dash of rock 'n' roll nostalgia (Dave Bartholomew's jump-jive "That's How You Got Killed Before'') and a few twists on Costello hits.

On "Watching the Detectives,'' for instance, the hard syncopated beat of the original is sacrificed in favor of a splashy arrangement that sounds more like a lost Nelson Riddle track or the theme for an MGM musical.

It's followed by the closing "God Give Me Strength,'' a bittersweet ballad leavened by the distinctive melodic touch of Burt Bacharach.

Costello, who also has finished work on a new album with New Orleans icon Allen Toussaint, seems to thrive on such collaborations. That's the case on My Flame Burns Blue, anyway.

It won't make you want to toss My Aim Is True, but if a guy has to grow older, this is a graceful way to do it.

Jabbott@Orlandosentinel.Com

-------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
http://www.ew.com/ew/music/0,6113,_4__,00.html

Entertainment Weekly

ELVIS COSTELLO LIVE WITH THE METROPOLE ORKEST
My Flame Burns Blue
(Deutsche Grammophon)

The cover art looks like an old Saul Bass movie poster, and sure
enough, the opening track, "Hora Decubitus" (in which Costello adds lyrics to a Charles Mingus tune), does sound like something out of "The Man With the Golden Arm," albeit transported across galaxies and genres. On Costello's first official live album, obscurities and "Watching the Detectives" alike are rearranged for jazz orchestra, where the '50s meets the aughts and hot bebop horn charts compete with ice-cool film-score strings. For those disinclined toward Costello's "art" records, occasional blues guitar solos and mad rants ward off any hoity-toitiness. A

Chris Willman

User avatar
John
Posts: 743
Joined: Sat Oct 11, 2003 5:52 am
Location: North of England

Postby John » Sat Feb 25, 2006 8:36 am

There's a 5 star review here. This guy obviously knows his stuff!

http://www.amazon.co.uk/exec/obidos/ASI ... 26-1612715

User avatar
Otis Westinghouse
Posts: 8849
Joined: Tue Jun 03, 2003 3:32 pm
Location: The theatre of dreams

Postby Otis Westinghouse » Sat Feb 25, 2006 4:33 pm

Even if he is repeating himself :D
There's more to life than books, you know, but not much more

verena
Posts: 373
Joined: Sat May 07, 2005 7:39 pm
Location: At the other end of the story

Postby verena » Sat Feb 25, 2006 6:04 pm

I was at the music store today, and they had the new release already. That was a nice surprise.

johnfoyle
Posts: 14078
Joined: Wed Jun 04, 2003 4:37 pm
Location: Dublin , Ireland

Postby johnfoyle » Mon Feb 27, 2006 3:06 am

http://theedge.bostonherald.com/discRev ... eid=128148

My Flame Burns Blue
(Deutsche Grammophon)

Really, is there a single Elvis Costello fan on this planet walking around thinking, “Man, I’d really like to see Elvis team up with a 52-piece Dutch jazz orchestra”?

While Costello’s previous high-minded projects with the likes of the Brodsky Quartet and Anne Sofie von Otter scored points for ambition, the results were as dry as burned toast and not much more appetizing. “My Flame Burns Blue” does not prove the delightful exception. Instead of giving new life to Costello’s songs, its big band-with-strings arrangements put them in a musical straitjacket. The Dutchmen, even with help from Costello’s longtime piano man Steve Nieve, intermittently manage to create a sense of groove - but you can easily picture them in your mind’s eye studiously playing every nonspontaneous note off paper.

In addition to Costello originals, the program - recorded live at the 2004 North Sea Jazz Festival - also includes Costello singing his own lyrics to tunes by Charles Mingus and Billy Strayhorn and a cover of Dave Bartholomew’s New Orleans’ classic “That’s How I Got Killed Before,” which is not nearly as provocative as the song’s title.

If there’s anything Costello fans are yearning for less than this Dutch jazz band hook-up, it’s a second helping of “Il Sogno,” Costello’s blandly competent 2004 classical orchestra work, which gets recycled as a suite on a bonus disc intended to sweeten the package. Download: “Episode of Blonde.”

( no name attached on 'net edition)

johnfoyle
Posts: 14078
Joined: Wed Jun 04, 2003 4:37 pm
Location: Dublin , Ireland

Postby johnfoyle » Mon Feb 27, 2006 9:06 am

http://www.newsday.com/news/columnists/ ... columnists

New York Newsday February 28, 2006

Glenn Gamboa

ONLY "FLAME" IN TOWN.

Elvis Costello is the musical equivalent of an adrenaline junkie, always in search of something to spark his creativity or build something new. His quest serves him well on "My Flame Burns Blue" (Deutsche Grammophon), a stunning collaboration with The Metropole Orkest, recorded live in The Hague in 2004. It brings a sour-and-sweet delivery on "Episode of Blonde," from 2002's "When I Was Cruel," that is deliciously wild, while the ballad "Favourite Hour," from 1994's "Brutal Youth," benefits from the lush orchestration. "Hora Decubitis," a Charlie Mingus composition that Costello was asked to write lyrics for, is gorgeously far-flung, with jazz elements fading into the blues and back out again. "That's How You Got Killed Before" is a big-band delight, though a similar treatment doesn't quite work on "Watching the Detectives." Of course, it wouldn't be Costello if his ambitions didn't get the best of him at some point. ("My Flame Burns Blue," in stores today; Grade: B+.)

johnfoyle
Posts: 14078
Joined: Wed Jun 04, 2003 4:37 pm
Location: Dublin , Ireland

Postby johnfoyle » Mon Feb 27, 2006 6:34 pm

Thanks to William on listserv for this ; he comments

This one's a bit harsh...

http://thephoenix.com/article_ektid4410.aspx

Boston Phoenix

Flaming out

Has Elvis Costello become Yes?

By: TED DROZDOWSKI

2/21/2006 5:40:10 PM



Costello's new disc has all the charm of a John Williams soundtrack.Elvis Costello’s My Flame Burns Blue (Deutsche Grammophon) disappoints me. I don’t mean critically as much as personally.

You see, my college, which had the distinction of being bought by the Moonies after I graduated, had a folk club. It was fine, but its usual menu of traditional folkies didn’t excite me. I wanted more punch and adventure. I was listening mostly to art-, prog-, avant-, and what’s now considered classic rock, which back in the late ’70s was pretty much basic FM radio.

A friend insisted I accompany him to that club to hear a new guy from England named Elvis Costello who’d just released an album called My Aim Is True (Columbia). It was an amazing concert. Costello had a nasty rock band and was ball lightning. He crooned and spat lyrics, circling the microphone like a moth near a bulb until he’d fall off stage into our laps. He accidentally unplugged his guitar, but unlike my friends in garage bands, he did it in the throes of passion, not of ineptitude. And he was a hell of a player, with a vocabulary of smart, jazzy chords.

Suddenly I understood that music could have a purer means of expression than that of the schooled, practiced musicians I loved. I’d seen Yes at least six times. At once long compositions like “Siberian Kahtru,” with its web of proficiency, seemed deceitful. They served the brain, not the heart. Thanks to Costello, I never heard prog-rock the same way again. By the time I graduated, I didn’t care about it anymore, with a handful of exceptions; I’d leapt headlong into the world that Richard Hell, Lydia Lunch, the Ramones, the Feelies, and others were creating a short train ride away, in Manhattan and Hoboken.

What disappoints me about Elvis these days is that he’s become Yes. The second, “bonus,” disc of My Flame Burns Blue, which comes out this Tuesday, February 28, is his “Siberian Kahtru” — a 45-minute suite from Il Sogno, the bland orchestral work he peddled in 2004. The performance has all the charm of a John Williams soundtrack, and if you like that stuff, you have my pity.


The first disc may be worse. It’s a public neutering of tunes from his catalogue including “Watching the Detectives” and “Clubland.” They’re rearranged for the Netherlands’ 52-piece Metropole Orkest, a jazz orchestra who’d sound fantastic if they were tackling Henry Mancini. But these songs demand the flexibility, nuance, and muscle Costello originally gave them. (He’s mounting a 13-date tour with local orchestras that’ll bring him to Symphony Hall and the Pops on May 10.)

Okay, maybe calling Elvis “Yes” is tarring with too broad a brush. On occasion he still makes passionate music. In 2004 there was also The Delivery Man (Lost Highway), an appealingly ragged bit of cultural tourism cut in a bearskins-and-flints Mississippi studio. And when he tours solo, his ability to touch nerves with his lyrics, voice, and playing is undiminished. He even rocks most of the times he reassembles his ’70s band the Attractions.

But I’d rather listen to Mariah Carey’s greatest ringtones than his mock-classical gruntings with opera singer Anne Sofie von Otter or 1993’s The Juliet Letters (Warner Bros.), the precious collaboration with the Brodsky Quartet that introduced his loftier ambitions. And his lounge album with Burt Bacharach was just as dull and mannered.

Maybe pop and rock songwriting have grown too easy for him. Certainly artists have the right, even the obligation, to take on new challenges. But like Yes, Costello seems so caught up in the process of exploring elaborate arrangements and flexing his chops that his music at times becomes heartless. And I maintain the right to be disappointed when the efforts of my musical heroes stink as badly as My Flame Burns Blue’s methane-fueled pyre.

User avatar
Otis Westinghouse
Posts: 8849
Joined: Tue Jun 03, 2003 3:32 pm
Location: The theatre of dreams

Postby Otis Westinghouse » Mon Feb 27, 2006 7:02 pm

He can maintain the right all he likes, but saying the Orkest would be more at home playing Henry Mancini is bollocks. He obviously doesn't get the genre. Hora Decubitus is a world way from that bland pap, and they are more than up to it.
There's more to life than books, you know, but not much more

User avatar
And No Coffee Table
Posts: 2766
Joined: Thu Aug 21, 2003 2:57 pm

Postby And No Coffee Table » Tue Feb 28, 2006 2:50 am

sweetest punch wrote:The iTunes store in Japan has My Flame Burns Blue for sale. You can hear 30 second audioclips of all the tracks.
The bonustrack here is not "Dust", but "Still"!!


The album is now available on iTunes in the U.S., where the bonus track is in fact "Dust"!

So how am I going to get a copy of "Still"?!

johnfoyle
Posts: 14078
Joined: Wed Jun 04, 2003 4:37 pm
Location: Dublin , Ireland

Postby johnfoyle » Tue Feb 28, 2006 3:02 am

http://billboard.com/bbcom/reviews/albu ... 1002074468


My Flame Burns Blue
ELVIS COSTELLO WITH THE METROPOLE ORKEST
Release Date: February 28, 2006

Producer(s): Gert-Jan van den Dolder

Genre: JAZZ
Label: Deutsche Grammophon


"My Flame Burns Blue" finds Costello diving headfirst into the jazzy waters he has waded in nearly his entire career. Recorded live at the North Sea Jazz Festival in 2004 with the Metropole Orkest, the album juggles new songs ("Speak Darkly, My Angel," "Put Away Forbidden Things") and little-known B-sides ("Almost Ideal Eyes") with Costello hits ("Watching the Detectives," "Clubland"), as well as reworkings of compositions by Charles Mingus and Billy Strayhorn. Even with the sweeping orchestral backdrop, Costello's voice still towers, especially on the album's numerous ballads; the Burt Bacharach co-penned "God Give Me Strength" is particularly strong. While this release (Costello's fourth on Deutsche Grammophon) might not please "angry young Elvis" rock traditionalists, it rewards those willing to follow the artist with his ongoing exploration of popular music. —Ben French
Last edited by johnfoyle on Wed Mar 01, 2006 3:10 am, edited 2 times in total.

johnfoyle
Posts: 14078
Joined: Wed Jun 04, 2003 4:37 pm
Location: Dublin , Ireland

Postby johnfoyle » Tue Feb 28, 2006 9:38 am

http://www.mtv.com/news/articles/152498 ... ewscrawler

MTV

New Releases: Ne-Yo, Hawthorne Heights, Kid Rock, Elvis Costello, Prodigy & More

02.28.2006 6:00 AM EST

(extract)

Elvis Costello, War Criminal?: You probably know the Hague as the place where global villains are tried, but a concert venue? Perhaps in an effort to keep Slobodan Milosevic company (why else?), Elvis Costello performed with the 52-piece Metropole Orkest for My Flame Burns Blue. In addition to revamped Costello classics like "Almost Blue" and "Watching the Detectives," he laces 9/11-related lyrics into Charles Mingus' "Hora Decubitus" (the jazz great's widow gave Costello permission to do so) and Billy Strayhorn's last song, "Blood Count." If that's not enough, there's a bonus disc featuring "Il Sogno," a classic composition that was used for Shakespeare's "A Midsummer Night's Dream."

User avatar
mood swung
Posts: 6906
Joined: Thu Jun 05, 2003 3:59 pm
Location: out looking for my tribe
Contact:

Postby mood swung » Tue Feb 28, 2006 11:11 am

MFBB is up on Napster this morning for your free listening pleasure.

It's awesome!
Like me, the "g" is silent.

johnfoyle
Posts: 14078
Joined: Wed Jun 04, 2003 4:37 pm
Location: Dublin , Ireland

Postby johnfoyle » Tue Feb 28, 2006 2:06 pm

http://www.allmusic.com/cg/amg.dll?p=am ... q1zcu4a~T1

My Flame Burns Blue

Elvis Costello/The Metropole Orkest

Review by Stephen Thomas Erlewine

My Flame Burns Blue is Elvis Costello's fourth record released on the classical label Deutsche Grammophon, and by now it should be clear that just because Elvis releases something on DG, it does not necessarily mean that the album itself is classical. That term may apply to For the Stars, his duet album with opera vocalist Anne Sofie Von Otter, as well as his orchestral piece Il Sogno (which is excerpted on a bonus CD attached to this release), but it doesn't apply to 2003's song cycle North, nor does it apply to My Flame Burns Blue, which is accurately described on his official website as "his first rock 'n' jazz album!" Evidently, Costello reserves his art projects for his albums on Deutsche Grammophon, of which My Flame Burns Blue is clearly one. As he says in his thorough liner notes (preparing those double-disc reissues apparently has unleashed the rock critic within), "this record may explain what I've been doing during the last twelve years when I haven't had an electric guitar in my hands...I've had the opportunity to work with a number of contrasting ensembles, from chamber group and jazz big band to symphony orchestra. Consequently, I had plenty of charts to consider for my concerts with the Metropole Orkest in the summer of 2004. The Metropole are the world's only full-time jazz orchestra with a string section."

Such an ensemble is ideal for a restless musician like Costello, who is eager to write in different idioms, or rearrange his old work in new ways, which is precisely what he did at the July 2004 concert at the North Sea Jazz Festival that is now captured on My Flame Burns Blue. He completely reworks "Clubland," which is now woozy and elastic, and "Watching the Detectives," which has been turned into "the style of a 1950s television theme." He expands but doesn't alter both "Almost Blue" and "God Give Me Strength," while reviving the David Bartholome number "That's How You Got Killed Before," which has been a standard in his repertoire since the mid-'80s. This makes for roughly a third of the album, with the rest of the set list containing reinterpretations of recent original material, songs he wrote for Von Otter and blues singer Charles Brown, plus Charles Mingus and Billy Strayhorn compositions that have been given new lyrics by Costello. It's an eclectic batch, veering from torchy ballads to rambunctious, sprawling jazz reminiscent of the Mingus Big Band, but it holds together well for two reasons. First, it's all anchored by the always remarkable Steve Nieve, whose piano is simultaneously fluid, florid, and tasteful, giving this a musical throughline that holds it steady throughout its twists and turns. But My Flame Burns Blue ultimately succeeds because of Costello, who has chosen his material wisely, sequenced it sharply, and has given it an enthusiastic reading that is arguably his richest live vocal work, rivaling that on the Costello & Nieve box set.

As good as this is, it is ultimately closer to a detour -- or perhaps a scenic drive -- than a major item in Costello's catalog. It's inspired and unexpected without quite being surprising, and that's because all the music here does have a natural antecedent somewhere within his catalog. What is noteworthy about My Flame Burns Blue is that Costello manages to tie all these seemingly disparate strands in his work into something that is not only cohesive, but explains an area of his work that hasn't necessarily been accurately documented on record before. But what really makes it a good record is that the performance is lively, energetic, and, yes, joyous, which means that even if this may be an art project, it's flat-out more entertaining than any album he's released since Painted from Memory.

johnfoyle
Posts: 14078
Joined: Wed Jun 04, 2003 4:37 pm
Location: Dublin , Ireland

Postby johnfoyle » Tue Feb 28, 2006 2:18 pm

http://pattimchugh.blogspot.com/2006/02 ... amite.html

Tuesday, February 28, 2006


posted by Patti @ 11:55 AM

The original Napoleon Dynamite

...so I went and picked up the new Elvis CD this morning before Matt headed to work. As soon as I walked into the music store (the highly overpriced one in the Antigonish Mall) the dude working asked me what I was looking for. I laughed...I guess if I was working there too I'd assume that anyone showing up before 10 am on a Tuesday morning (the day new releases come out) is looking for something specific! Anyway they had ONE copy of My Flame Burns Blue...one! I got it and I'm lovin it.

Stereogum mentioned the new Costello album too, then asked readers to list their fave Elvis song and album. I couldn't do it...I think mine changes everyday. I'd say right now I'm really into Blood & Chocolate. Did you know, non-EC fans, that Elvis used the pseudonym Napoleon Dynamite in the Blood & Chocolate era (1986-ish)? Apparently the dude that made the movie said there was no connection though. Weird.

Anyway...I'm not sure why I'm blogging this because I don't think anyone I know that reads this blog is a big E.C. fan! I just want to put my Elvis-love out there on the ol' interweb. Seriously though, if you're a music fan and you're looking to get into something new, pick up some Elvis. I have to warn you though, it might become an obsession. I was always a casual fan (having the greatest hits and whatnot)...then Matt went away for work for a few months in spring 2003 and I was really bored and discovered the awesome genius of EC...and thank God I was working because I was buying Elvis albums like crazy.

sweetest punch
Posts: 3303
Joined: Sat Apr 03, 2004 5:49 am
Location: Belgium

Postby sweetest punch » Tue Feb 28, 2006 3:08 pm

http://www.dcexaminer.com/articles/2006 ... stello.txt

Costello's kind of 'Blue'

Singer releases double album with live show, experts for ballet 'Il Sogno'
By Brian Truitt



Over the years, when Elvis Costello wasn't singing about peace, love and understanding, the singer delved into the classical and jazz worlds, recording a CD, "Spike," featuring New Orleans' own Dirty Dozen Brass Band, doing an album of jazz ballads with Anne Sofie von Otter and even composing his own ballet after Shakespeare's "A Midsummer Night's Dream."

"My Flame Burns Blue" (Deutsche Grammophon) may be the epitome of the native Liverpudlian's forays into the - ahem - finer arts, with a live disc recorded with the Metropole Orkest at the 2004 North Sea Jazz Festival and a bonus CD of excerpts from his ballet, "Il Sogno."

The first CD offers several Costello-penned songs with full orchestra: "Watching the Detective" surrounds the singer's lyrics with a crime-noiresque sonic background, Costello's sonorous vocals blend well with strings and horn on the moving ballad "Speak Darkly My Angel," and the brass grooves on the Latin-tinged "Clubland." Another Dirty Dozen collaboration, "That's How You Got Killed Before," benefits from a larger instrumental arrangement, and Costello swings out brilliantly on the Charles Mingus tune "Hora Decubitis." Yet he saves the best for last with "God Give Me Strength," a number co-written with Burt Bacharach that lets Costello's most heartfelt emoting shine over muted trumpets and piano.


In a way, however, the suite from "Il Sogno," recorded by the London Symphony Orchestra, is even more noteworthy. For a man primarily known as a rocker, Costello has a definite gift for orchestration, and his composing style evokes George Gershwin and Thomas Newman: There are both sweeping lines and a hint of minimalism in "The Coart," but the gorgeous, lilting melody in "Oberon and Titania" and heroic themes of "The Wedding" hint that there's an Oscar-winning soundtrack lying around if Costello ever tires of the rock 'n' roll.
Since you put me down, it seems i've been very gloomy. You may laugh but pretty girls look right through me.


Return to “Elvis Costello General Discussion”

Who is online

Users browsing this forum: Baidu [Spider] and 18 guests