New album for 2013: "Wise Up Ghost" (with The Roots!)

Pretty self-explanatory
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Re: New album for 2013: "Wise Up Ghost" (with The Roots!)

Postby Otis Westinghouse » Wed Oct 09, 2013 6:51 pm

The song WUG is a bit like Tripwire in that it takes the opening of an older song and uses the motif as the basis for the whole new song. I like it, but it isn't the standout for me.

As above, Puppet is the song sticking in my head most, more than Tripwire right now. It strikes me as a really original and powerful song and an interesting response to his father's death. The simple combination of the piano motif, going round and round like a dull pain in the head, and the lovely vocal melody, is perfect.

Further to the Bowie ref above with 'old chum', it brings to mind Bowie's gorgeous Slip Away (from Heathen), particularly with the melody of the opening lines of that song - something quite similar there:



It also links thematically re puppet refs, not to a string puppet, but a hand one, Uncle Floyd's Oogie (a ref that meant nothing to me, but won't to many here!):
http://www.bobleafe.com/layout/Results. ... &startat=1

I love it when two disparate songs connect like that in your head.

I would love a whole album in this vein.
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Re: New album for 2013: "Wise Up Ghost" (with The Roots!)

Postby cwr » Wed Oct 09, 2013 8:58 pm

seanpointblank-- HA! My mistake. I certainly didn't mean to imply that ATUB wasn't a "proper" EC album, just that Costello wasn't content to let his original arrangement of "Complicated Shadows" be an obscure b-side/bonus track demo.

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Re: New album for 2013: "Wise Up Ghost" (with The Roots!)

Postby johnfoyle » Fri Oct 11, 2013 5:06 pm

While in London yesterday & today for the wonderful Laura Cantrell I dropped in to HMV, Oxford St to see if WUG is getting much of a display. It is , although stacking it next to Mark Lanegan's (excellent) similar looking release might be a hit confusing for some people. A certain box set is also gathering dust in the store.


Image

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Re: New album for 2013: "Wise Up Ghost" (with The Roots!)

Postby johnfoyle » Fri Oct 11, 2013 5:23 pm

http://ca.music.yahoo.com/blogs/stop-th ... 26087.html



Elvis Costello & ?uestlove on the ‘Despicable’ Ray Charles Incident


By Craig Rosen | Stop The Presses!

11 Oct. 13


While making their acclaimed collaborative album Wake Up Ghost and Other Stories, Roots co-founder and "Late Night with Jimmy Fallon" bandleader Ahmir ?uestlove Thompson and Elvis Costello became great friends. When we got the chance to interview both fellows via phone for a feature on the album, we had to wonder if they had discussed a dark part of Costello's past.

But first, some history. In wake of the George Zimmerman acquittal for the murder of unarmed Florida teen Trayvon Martin, ?uestlove posted a brutally honest essay about what it's like to grow up black in America. In the post, he wrote, "The overall message this whole Trayvon case has taught me: You ain't sh*t."

Given ?uestlove's post about race relations in 2013, we couldn't help but wonder if he'd ever discussed Costello's infamous 1979 drunken outburst in which he called Ray Charles "a blind, ignorant [n-word]."

In our separate phone interviews, about two weeks apart, both Costello and ?uestlove responded to the question. Costello was first, and he clearly wasn't amused.

"I think Ahmir knows my history pretty well, so anything he has to say about it, if he had any doubt of what I'm about, and if it wasn't obvious from the majority of my actions what I feel about how much we should love one another, despite some of the despicable things I've done ... One very unfortunate, inexplicable action doesn't undo everything else in your life," Costello said.

He continued to explain at length and as he went on, a bit of anger surfaced. "Is it on my mind, will people use it to explain the work I'm doing now? Yes, some f***ers will; but you know, what kind of shallowness is that?"

Later, though, he quoted from "Tripwire," a song on Wake Up Ghost, when talking about ?uestlove's essay, saying prejudice is "born out of differences." He referenced the lyrics, "just because I don't read the language doesn't mean I'm blind to the threat."

When we spoke to ?uestlove a few weeks later, he said, "Elvis and I just talked about it for the first time the other day, and we had a really great talk about it for about almost a half hour. I don't want to go into detail about it, but definitely that kind of conversation is the healthiest dialogue. "

?uestlove admitted that when the collaboration with Costello was first announced, "a lot of people came at me on Twitter, 'How can you do this?'" But then he added, "That's like if people held me to being a sexist or misogynist for a poor choice of walk-on music for Michele Bachmann for my entire life," he said, referring to the incident in which the Roots played a snippet of Fishbone's 1985 song "Lyin' Ass Bitch" for the then- Republican presidential candidate's walk-on music during her November 2011 appearance on "Late Night with Jimmy Fallon."

"Clearly that's not me," he continued. "Sometimes you do the wrong thing without thinking, but that doesn't necessarily define what's in your heart. [Costello] was a different man at the age of 22 than he is at 59. So I feel no need or reason to chastise the speck of dust that's in his eye while there's a board inside of my eye."

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Re: New album for 2013: "Wise Up Ghost" (with The Roots!)

Postby verbal gymnastics » Sat Oct 12, 2013 6:25 am

To be honest, what was the purpose of asking the question unless it was for some sort of provocation? What did he expect them to say? Did he want Elvis to say "Yeah I've got no regrets about what I said. I stand by every word and I'm only using this collaboration to improve my street cred".

I think the whole of the last sentence of the interview sums it up neatly.
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Re: New album for 2013: "Wise Up Ghost" (with The Roots!)

Postby Otis Westinghouse » Sat Oct 12, 2013 6:32 am

Totally, lovely quote there from Ahmir.

John: laughing over the absurd £291 box set. Tempted to nick it? Looking forward to an account of the 4 plays you saw in London.
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Re: New album for 2013: "Wise Up Ghost" (with The Roots!)

Postby MistakenForLilies » Sun Oct 13, 2013 12:47 am

As for the rewrites, I’ve just been reading Uncut’s review of the album and completely disagree about which are the most successful – they name “Refuse to be Saved” as the least successful and “Wake Me Up” one of the most, but I had the opposite reaction (although I do enjoy “Wake Me Up,” it seems that those songs "needed" a rewrite somewhat less). “Refuse to be Saved” gives an overlooked, excellent lyric a second chance at life. As someone who really enjoys the songs of MLAR despite some debatable production choices, I was really pleased about the various references to those songs on the album, since I’ve never quite understood why MLAR seems to be ranked among his “worst” lately.

Like others have said, “Puppet” is a real stand-out track for me, along with “If I Could Believe.” I do wonder how non-fans might interpret the first if they’re unfamiliar with the subject matter, since the personal nature of the song is probably, in part, why it strikes me as so powerful. In a way, it’s a descendant of “Veronica,” with less personal distance between singer and subject matter, while “Believe” reminds me thematically of “Couldn’t Call It Unexpected No. 4,” which EC described as an “agnostic prayer.”

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Re: New album for 2013: "Wise Up Ghost" (with The Roots!)

Postby sweetest punch » Tue Oct 15, 2013 2:12 pm

Chartpositions of WUG on "Billboard 200":
First week: 16
Second week: 67
Third week: 111
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Re: New album for 2013: "Wise Up Ghost" (with The Roots!)

Postby johnfoyle » Tue Oct 15, 2013 3:21 pm

That most of us put in our boxes - thanks Elvis !

http://www.theatlanticwire.com/entertai ... sts/70307/

Elvis Costello on Roots Collaboration: 'I Don't Make Records for Fetishists'

Zach Schonfeld

15 Oct. 13



For Elvis Costello, appearing on Late Night with Jimmy Fallon isn't just a means of self-promotion. It's also a networking opportunity.

How else would he have met The Roots, the impossibly hardworking Philadelphia hip hop band that's been serving as Fallon's house band since the show began in 2009?

Sharing reputations for fierce eclecticism and a promiscuous eye towards collaboration, the odd pairing first shared a groove when Costello came on the show in 2009. The songwriter appeared several more times in the subsequent years, and by 2012, on Questlove's ballsy suggestion, they'd agreed to take their relationship to the next level: by recording a full-length album.

"While I’m thinking, 'I wonder what they intend to play with me,' they were obviously plotting on locking the door once I got into the studio and not letting me out ‘till we made a record," said Costello. "Where we've headed since then is all about enjoying playing together on these occasions and realizing that we had the means to make a record and then we just needed the will and intention to make something that held together as a story."

Sharp and soulful in equal measure, matching Costello's biting storytelling with The Roots' propulsive, funk-driven grooves, the ensuing LP—Wise Up Ghost—dropped last month. In a recent interview with The Atlantic Wire, the 59-year-old songwriter opened up about its impetus, the critical reaction, and just why people seem to think this particular record is somehow more "collaborative" in nature than any other he's recorded in a four-decade career making pop records.

The first hurdle for this project: deciding when to go public with the news.

Costello was sold on the idea "about five minutes after [Roots drummer and sometime frontman] Quest[love] suggested it," he said. "But we didn’t tell anybody else we were doing it and didn’t really put any big pressure on ourselves by saying, 'Oh, we're making an album.' We just wanted to play, exchange ideas, beginning with the idea of revisiting one of my songs, which I thought was a shrewd choice."

That theme—dropping lyrical snippets from previous Costello songs in new musical context—crops up throughout Ghost; "Stick Out Your Tongue," for instance, borrows heavily from Costello's 1983 track "Pills & Soap," while the waltzy "Tripwire" tips a hat to "Satellite."

"I think I'm pretty much correct in saying that 99 percent of the lyrics that we assembled into a new story were unknown to 99 percent of the [new album's] audience," Costello said of the decision. "More importantly, what the songs were actually saying had not been diminished by time. If you take a song like the lyrics for 'Refuse to be Saved,' which I sang first with very different music in 1990, the lyrics are kind of horribly true. If we sing it with more force now, maybe people will hear it this time."

"I've written a lot of songs," the singer added. "You don't want to be too self-satisfied that just because you wrote it, that means everybody's heard it." And anyway, he's not impressed by those savvy enough to list the sources of the lyrical content: "It reveals nothing. It reveals that you know my catalog to a perhaps unhealthy degree, 'cause I'm of the mind I don't make records for fetishists."

The songwriter's creative process with The Roots took place primarily via email, swapping words and drum tracks instead of sharing a studio. Costello would send over a lyric, "and then Quest would come back and say, 'I got that.' A beat would arrive, and that beat would be completely different than the one I'd proposed—it would be half-time. Like, 'Oh, you're hearing it like that, then?'"

So emerged "(She Might Be a) Grenade," a tense, start-stopping fantasy of "this one woman revolving around a pole in a dead-end club out by the airport, staring into a reflection and she has a hallucination of a woman walking through a marketplace with a bomb strapped to her chest." How do you give accompaniment to such a delirious vision? "You’ve got to try and put some soul into such a wretched subject matter," Costello deadpanned.

With Costello in charge of the record's lyrical content, Black Thought, The Roots' lead vocalist and rapper, is notably absent from proceedings, a gap that's irked some Roots fans and critics alike. "No one raps at any point," observed critic Jayson Greene in a lukewarm review for Pitchfork, "which seems like a missed opportunity to make something unusual happen." That wasn't part of the plan, Costello says ("there was no masterplan, it was all sort of in response to the material"), but simply how things naturally unraveled.

"The last thing anybody wanted to do—as Quest was quite concerned—was for people to perceive this as 'My Rap Album' or some affectation that was ill-advised," Costello explained. "Black Thought’s just too good to be a bit part player on a record. And there are other records the Roots have made in which he doesn’t appear."

Plus, the prodigious emcee will be appearing on a collection of Wise Up Ghosts remixes set to appear in November. Costello had nothing to do with its making. And he's irked by the tendency to harp on about the collaborative nature of his, err, collaboration with The Roots: "I never plan to collaborate with anybody," he insisted. "But I keep reminding people when they keep hammering on about this collaboration thing: you know, all music is inherently collaborative. The only time people make note of it is when you come from different contrasting worlds of music, and the juxtaposition somehow strikes people as curious or funny or potentially hazardous."

Not that the punk and New Wave veteran particularly cares what critics are saying.

"Even when I was a teenager, you kind of knew some of your teachers were idiots," he griped. "If one person that expressed an opinion could write one of these songs, I’d be extremely surprised. Or any of the ones that we’ve ever written."

And anyway, he's already onto the next thing, a northeastern solo tour in November.

"I’m not gonna lie awake at night worrying about it," he said.

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Re: New album for 2013: "Wise Up Ghost" (with The Roots!)

Postby Jack of All Parades » Tue Oct 15, 2013 4:11 pm

The return of 'old' piss and vinegar-I knew he could not be kept down. :wink:
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Re: New album for 2013: "Wise Up Ghost" (with The Roots!)

Postby Poor Deportee » Tue Oct 15, 2013 5:47 pm

:lol: He's baaaAAAAaaack.

Is this fellow bipolar, or what? One interview, he's sweetness and light. The next, his ripping his hardcore fans :lol: Funny stuff.
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Re: New album for 2013: "Wise Up Ghost" (with The Roots!)

Postby verbal gymnastics » Tue Oct 15, 2013 6:22 pm

Absolutely. This interview answers my question about Black Thought (has Elvis been lurking?).

Strangely enough, given my post about my thoughts of the album, I was going to start a thread for fun to list the references from Elvis' already written songs on Wise Up Ghost. It's a good thing I didn't; Elvis' response would have made me feel pretty small :lol:
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Re: New album for 2013: "Wise Up Ghost" (with The Roots!)

Postby Otis Westinghouse » Tue Oct 15, 2013 6:57 pm

There's more to life than books, you know, but not much more

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Re: New album for 2013: "Wise Up Ghost" (with The Roots!)

Postby verbal gymnastics » Wed Oct 16, 2013 4:51 am

Thanks Otis.

I was thinking along the lines of any possible musical references as well (not just lyrical). I thought I heard a bit of Needle Time somewhere but that might have been tenuous :lol:
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Re: New album for 2013: "Wise Up Ghost" (with The Roots!)

Postby krm » Wed Oct 16, 2013 2:29 pm

and I hear "Stella Hurt" everytime I listen to "My new HAUNT"

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Re: New album for 2013: "Wise Up Ghost" (with The Roots!)

Postby rightbrain » Wed Oct 16, 2013 3:24 pm

And someone mentioned they heard a tinkling piano "quote" from All The Rage on My New HAUNT as well . . .

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Re: New album for 2013: "Wise Up Ghost" (with The Roots!)

Postby Otis Westinghouse » Wed Oct 16, 2013 5:44 pm

Get editing on the wiki! The page does show music as well as lyrics, e.g. Viceroy's Row Stations of the Cross live horns. Fairly obscure ref.
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Re: New album for 2013: "Wise Up Ghost" (with The Roots!)

Postby bronxapostle » Wed Oct 16, 2013 7:00 pm

krm wrote:and I hear "Stella Hurt" everytime I listen to "My new HAUNT"


ME TOO Kjell...from the first time i heard it. good ear maaaaan!!!!!!! love that song and CAN YOU HEAR ME the most of the new songs!

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Re: New album for 2013: "Wise Up Ghost" (with The Roots!)

Postby Natasha » Wed Oct 16, 2013 8:50 pm

"It reveals that you know my catalog to a perhaps unhealthy degree"

Not even my therapist would have put it better.
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Re: New album for 2013: "Wise Up Ghost" (with The Roots!)

Postby A rope leash » Thu Oct 17, 2013 8:10 am

A curious turn has transpired since last I spoke of this recording.

Last weekend beach bunny's daughter came to visit, and the conversation turned to music. Beach bunny blurted out that I like Frank Zappa and all that. I said I got Elvis Costello and the Roots on the player right now, it's awful!

Beach bunny said no it's not awful!

Next day she was riding with me she said she had that stupid Elvis song stuck in her head I said me too which one Cinco Minutos con vous.

Ha ha ha I never would have believed it. She's all hair bands of the Eighties.

I put in the CD.

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Re: New album for 2013: "Wise Up Ghost" (with The Roots!)

Postby sweetest punch » Thu Oct 17, 2013 11:31 am

Last edited by sweetest punch on Thu Oct 17, 2013 11:55 am, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: New album for 2013: "Wise Up Ghost" (with The Roots!)

Postby sweetest punch » Thu Oct 17, 2013 11:41 am

http://news.radio.com/2013/10/17/elvis- ... -uestlove/

Elvis Costello Opens Up About 1979 Racial Slurs in Interview with ?uestlove

All these years, it turns out that Elvis Costello may have been more of a persona put on by Declan McManus than the world really knew.

In an interview with ?uestlove for Okayplayer, Costello addresses the “angry young man” persona from the early years of his career as a preamble for what turns out to be his first comment in decades about the racial slurs he made in 1979 during a drunken conversation with Stephen Stills and Bonnie Bramlett.

Costello dropped a particular racial epithet conversationally Ray Charles that was then leaked and remarked upon for years. The problem was compounded by use of that name racial epithet in the lyrics to a song on his then-current album, Armed Forces. His next album, Get Happy!!!, was widely seen as a love-letter to soul music and a mea culpa for his actions, although not necessarily a warmly received or reviewed one.

Costello fumbles his words a bit in the interview, where he recounts the events, explaining that, “in my arrogant youthful — I thought was being ironic.” He goes on to say the conversation came about because he felt, at the time, that Stills and Bramlett didn’t have the same appreciation for rhythm & blues that he did, which he disavows as “f****** stupid.”

“I heard these words come out of my mouth and there was a bar fight. It should have never gone any further than that because it was an idiotic — but it’s been in my biography ever since,” Costello said. “Despite everything else that I’ve stood for, that’s still mentioned. And some people, in the Twitter/Facebook era, are going to read that. And when you’re in a group that you don’t know, I don’t know whether you know that [gestures to ?uestlove] about me. Or whether other people in the band know that and make assumptions. ‘Oh, this guy’s actually got a white hood in his [fumbles] closet somewhere. He’s actually a secret member of the Klan.’ It’s upsetting. It’s upsetting because I can’t explain how I even got to think you could be funny about something like that. Like I said, I was 25 when that happened. I wasn’t even 25.”

Costello references the Rolling Stone cover story, the topic of ?uestlove’s collection of vintage copies of the magazine being the thing that got this conversation going, where he was given the opportunity to address the issue at the time. A reproduction of that story is still available on Costello’s official website, indicating it is a matter he still feels a need to address. As the conversation winds down, Costello finds himself wound back up and offers up what appears to be the an apology for his actions, directed to ?uestlove and addressing the conversation about his collaboration with The Roots on Wise Up Ghost.

“I’m sorry. You know? It’s about time I said it out loud,” Costello said, addressing ?uestlove. “You know what I’m saying? Because I know, I know in my heart what — people are curious, people are curious. Even now I see reactions to this record, people going, ‘Well yeah, but they don’t know that about him.’ Well, f****** ask me then.”
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Re: New album for 2013: "Wise Up Ghost" (with The Roots!)

Postby sweetest punch » Thu Oct 17, 2013 11:51 am

Chartposition WUG on 4th week in Billboard 200: 167
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Re: New album for 2013: "Wise Up Ghost" (with The Roots!)

Postby verbal gymnastics » Thu Oct 17, 2013 12:16 pm

This whole revisiting of the Ray Charles incident is really annoying me. It's irrelevant and inappropriate. Do people think Elvis works with black musicians just to clear his conscience or something?
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Re: New album for 2013: "Wise Up Ghost" (with The Roots!)

Postby Jack of All Parades » Thu Oct 17, 2013 12:37 pm

verbal gymnastics wrote:This whole revisiting of the Ray Charles incident is really annoying me. It's irrelevant and inappropriate. Do people think Elvis works with black musicians just to clear his conscience or something?


VG- I do not for a minute believe such a thing. But it is equally clear the 'pain' and 'frustration' he still feels to this day from that incident. And he brings it up! It clearly has been and continues to be an internal burden for him.

Lord Jim is all the more now an appropriate context for my trying to understand his angst having just viewed that piece.
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