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Elvis Australia : Official Elvis Presley Fan Club

Fourteen CDs - The Elvis Collection

By Elvis Australia
June 3, 2008 - 7:01:53 PM

The following 14 titles will be released soon. All recordings are well known from old CD's which have previously been released, so nothing new, they are the exact same recording from older titles which we know already.

So these imports are for those that missed out on the old releases and do not have these in your collection. One notable exeption would be the Moody Blue & Other Great Performances which was only presented in a cardboard slipcase the first time around so now it is in a digipack.

Girl Happy At The Worlds Fair, Event Number 8, Don't Think Twice, Carry Me Back To Old Virginia, Snowbird, Still Rocking The Nation, Holding Back The Years, South Bound, Breathing Out Fire, Old Times, They Are Not Forgotten, Blazing Into The Darkness, Moody Blue, Guaranteed To Blow Your Mind and One Night In Vegas.

Girl Happy At The Worlds Fair
CD Digipack, Studio Outtakes

Event Number 8
CD Digipack, Houston, Texas, March 03, 1974, Soundboard

Don't Think Twice
CD Digipack, Las Vegas, Nevada, January 29, 1973, Soundboard

Carry Me Back To Old Virginia
CD Digipack, Richmond, Virginia, April 10, 1972, Soundboard

CD Digipack, Las Vegas, Nevada, January 29, 1971, Soundboard

Still Rocking The Nation
CD Digipack, Huntsville, Alabama, September 6, 1976, Soundboard

Holding Back The Years
CD Digipack, Cincinatti, Ohio, March 21, 1976, Soundboard

South Bound
CD Digipack, Macon, Georgia, August 31, 1976, Soundboard

Breathing Out Fire
CD Digipack, Dayton, Ohio, October 6, 1974, Soundboard

Old Times, They Are Not Forgotten
CD Digipack, Tuscaloosa, Alabama, August 30, 1976, Soundboard

Blazing Into The Darkness
CD Digipack, Las Vegas, Hilton Hotel, 11th August 1972, Soundboard

Moody Blue & Other Great Performances
CD Digipack, Charlotte, North Carolina, 21st February 1977, Soundboard

Guaranteed To Blow Your Mind
CD Digipack, Memphis Tennessee, 10th June 1975 and Richmond Virginia, 18th March 1974, Soundboard

One Night In Vegas
CD Digipack, Las Vegas International Hotel, 23rd February 1970, Soundboard

More information

Moody Blue & Other Great Performances
(Fort Baxter FB 2097) (Released 1995)
Charlotte, February 21 - 1977

In some ways, this album is something of a revelation. Granted, Elvis is not at the height of his powers, and there are some truly awful tracks, such as the opening number on this CD, 'Are You Lonesome Tonight'. Sweet Inspirations' Estelle Brown is trying to get Elvis on the right track, but his mind is obviously off to lunch (or worse).

But on the other hand there are a couple of real gems, such as a marvelous take on 'Reconsider Baby'. It's not as good as the 1960 studio cut, but it's as least as good, if not better, than the 1969 and 1972 live renditions released by BMG/RCA.

Elvis sounds pretty tired during the song, as indeed he does on the whole album, but on this blues classic it actually fit very well with the content of the lyrics. A marvelous performance that is further enhanced by the brilliant lead guitar work of James Burton.

'Moody Blue' is a nice addition to one's live collection if only for the fact that this, to my knowledge, is the only live version around. Elvis mentions that they tried it the night before without success. Unfortunately, it's not very good on this album, either. Elvis' vocal is very strained and uncertain. The band had learned the lesson, though, and they sound brilliant on this song as well as throughout this album.

Songs like 'My Way' and 'You Gave Me A Mountain' are delivered with some of the magic of old still at hand, but I've heard many better versions.

The real highlights comes towards the end when Elvis decides to play the piano. All of a sudden we are treated to Elvis Presley at his very best. 'Where No One Stands Alone' from the "How Great Thou Art Album" is performed live for the very first time, and Elvis is inspired as well as inspiring in a breathtaking version. Technically, this is perhaps not the most polished I have heard, but the emotional impact is awesome. This is proof that Elvis, although sick and distressed and just plain tired of it all, still had his moments, right up to the very end.

'Unchained Melody' is a more familiar tune, of course, and perhaps that's the reason it doesn't seem quite as exciting and revealing as 'Where No One Stands Alone', but it's a great version, a powerful performance, and definitely among the best tracks I've heard with 1977-era Elvis.

This is a fine album that deserves it's place in every serious Elvis-collection. About the only thing wrong with it is the rather cheap cardboard cover, although the pictures are quite nice. The sound is perfect, in fact it's better than the BMG/RCA CD-release of 'Elvis In Concert'.

Are You Lonesome Tonight
Reconsider Baby
Love Me
Moody Blue
You Gave Me A Mountain
Jailhouse Rock
It's Now Or Never
Little Sister
Teddy Bear/Don't Be Cruel
My Way
Release Me
Why Me, Lord
Polk Salad Annie (Montgomery, Feb. 16)
Where No One Stands Alone (Montgomery, Feb. 16)
Unchained Melody (Montgomery, Feb. 16)
Can't Help Falling In Love (Montgomery, Feb. 16)
Closing Vamp (Montgomery, Feb. 16)
Telephone Conversation (1971)

Performance: ***
Sound: *****
Artwork: ***

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