Elvis Costello & Allen Toussaint

The River in Reverse
Verve Forecast

You know it's hard to tell these days whether Elvis Costello is a prolific genius or if he's just spread too thin. Give the man credit: whatever he’s doing, he's workin' hard at it. In recent months there’s been a live album with a 52 piece orchestra that recast many of his hits and came with a bonus disc of his orchestral suite Il Sogno..

Now, inspired by the travails of New Orleans, DMc and longtime Crescent City musical treasure Allen Toussaint, take on the Toussaint songbook and score a joyous, funky triumph. One listen to Costello's forceful vocal performance of "Tears, Tears and More Tears" with his band The Imposters seamlessly combined with Toussaint's Crescent City Horns and you're convinced. Toussaint's stretching out vocally on "Who's Gonna Help Brother Get Further?" shows again truly what a master he is. Two songwriting collaborations between the two work well and Toussaint's minor chord rearrangement of Fess’ "Tipitina", here renamed, "Ascension Day" is both respectful and new. All star collaborations rarely work out this well.

Monty's picture

I've heard some of this new release and totally love it. This is going to be a smash hit for Elvis. 'Tears, Tears and More Tears' will stay in your head long after the tune is over. I'm biased toward liking Elvis, but this is worth a listen even from those who aren't. The release date is set for early June.

Monty's picture

A couple of other new releases worth checking out if you get around to it RB, James Hunter has a new album called, People Gonna Talk and Jack Johnson has a new album that I think is titled, Upside Down, though I could be mistaken on the title. The James Hunter album will carry you back to the late 50s in style, but man is it fresh.

Jazzfan's picture

Thanks for the info Monty. I've been a long time fan of both EC and the great Allen Toussaint, so this release will be a real treat for me. Elvis' New Orlean's roots go back quite a few years," he's no Johnny come lately to the New Orleans scene. Check out his guest vocal on the Dirty Dozen Brass Band's ""The New Orleans Album""", which dates back to 1989.

Donald N.'s picture

Damn, I wish I could caught them when they played here (NOLA). Definitely a must buy!