Elvis Costello & The Imposters – The Return of the Spectacular Spinning Songbook!!! [Deluxe Edition] (2011)

Posted by Green on September 26, 2018as


The Return of the Spectacular Spinning Songbook!!! gained some notoriety in the week prior to its release when Elvis Costello claimed its “price appears to be either a misprint or a satire.” True, the $262 price tag is steep — particularly for an album that offers 16 songs on its CD and 19 on its DVD, some overlapped, some not — but some die-hard fans with deep wallets will surely find the replica of the Spectacular Spinning Songwheel appealing and the musical contents, which are penciled in for a separate affordable release sometime in 2012, are strong. Costello & the Imposters are in high spirits, jumping out of the gate with “I Hope You’re Happy Now” — a tune whose 1986 vintage dates from the original Spinning Songwheel tour, legendary among Costello fanatics for its loose, unpredictable nature — then tearing into Nick Lowe’s “Heart of the City,” one of two unexpected covers here (the other being the Rolling Stones’ “Out of Time”). Other pleasant surprises rear their heads — notably Susanna Hoffs taking lead on “Tear Off Your Own Head (It’s a Doll Revolution),” a song the Bangles recorded after Elvis — but he still finds time for such staples as “Everyday I Write the Book,” “Watching the Detectives,” “I Want You,” “(What’s So Funny ‘Bout) Peace, Love and Understanding,” and “Radio, Radio,” so it’s not entirely a stroll through the darkest corners of Costello’s past, something that undoubtedly makes that high price tag sting just a little bit more. But disregard the cost of The Return of the Spectacular Spinning Songbook!!! for a moment and focus on the music: it’s an enjoyable set that is absolutely worth the price when it’s available at a lower suggested retail, and for those wealthy Costello fanatics, this big box is a handsome collectable.


01. I Hope You’re Happy Now (3:14)
02. Heart of the City (2:22)
03. Mystery Dance (2:05)
04. Radio Radio (2:35)
05. Everyday I Write the Book (5:00)
06. God Give Me Strength (6:33)
07. Watching the Detectives (6:51)
08. Tear Off Your Own Head (It’s a Doll Revolution) (with Susanna Hoffs) (3:43)
09. Out of Time (5:00)
10. I Want You (8:39)
11. Stella Hurt (6:43)
12. All Grown Up (4:43)
13. Lipstick Vogue (4:25)
14. Man Out of Time (4:54)
15. National Ransom (4:04)
16. (What’s So Funny ’bout) Peace, Love and Understanding (5:19)

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