Review : Almost In Love CD
While a touch scattershot, there's a great many satisfying gems during this somewhat neglected stretch. Almost In Love, originally released in 1970, gathers ten singles, many of them from his films, and offers a strong cross-section of his many changing moods.
The album opens with his interpretation of Brazilian guitarist-composer Luiz Bonfa's smoky Almost In Love that shows our man had picked up a few things from the '60s bossa nova set. We're quickly jettisoned into the hard rock present by the gnarly electric guitar on the succulently titled Long Legged Girl (With The Short Dress On), delivered in a way that suggest she won't be wearing that garment for long.
Then, it's Edge of Reality, Elvis' merger of Bobby Darin and the newfangled psychedelic stuff the kids were diggin'. And so goes the herk and jerk of Almost In Love, where the eardrum whiplash keeps rewarding one right up till the end of this lost killer. Hiding further in are the Tony Joe White-like Clean Up Your Own Backyard, the gussied up Merle Haggard country of My Little Friend and U.S. Male, and top flight groovers Rubberneckin' and A Little Less Conversation, familiar as the theme song (remixed) to viewers of the TV show Las Vegas.
For a guy who's sometimes rightly accused of frivolity, profiteering and abusing his natural gifts, Elvis seems remarkably engaged and surprisingly musical throughout Almost In Love. His performances are uniformly passionate and interesting, and there's a subtle critique of overt religiosity and stiff-upper-lip-ed-ness. It's easy to forget what an uproar Presley's hips caused in the 1950s, but it's worth noting how he pushed – albeit it gently – against prevailing standards even in his latter years. And more than all this, Elvis could really sing and he does just that for ten swell cuts on this album.
Almost In Love, Long Legged Girl (With The Short Dress On), Edge Of Reality, My Little Friend, A Little Less Conversation, Rubberneckin', Clean Up Your Own Back Yard, U.S. Male, Charro, Stay Away
(Stay Away is listed as Stay Away Joe on the CD)
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Never before have we seen an Elvis Presley concert from the 1950's with sound. Until Now! The DVD Contains recently discovered unreleased film of Elvis performing 6 songs, including Heartbreak Hotel and Don't Be Cruel, live in Tupelo Mississippi 1956. Included we see a live performance of the elusive Long Tall Sally seen here for the first time ever. + Plus Bonus DVD Audio.
This is an excellent release no fan should be without it.
The 'parade' footage is good to see as it puts you in the right context with color and b&w footage. The interviews of Elvis' Parents are well worth hearing too. The afternoon show footage is wonderful and electrifying : Here is Elvis in his prime rocking and rolling in front of 11.000 people. Highly recommended.
Tupelo's Own Elvis Presley DVD Video with Sound.