Costello, Elvis / Roots - Wise Up Ghost (CD)

Elvis Costello

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Categories
RockPopMusic
Category
  1. Performer
  2. Rock & Pop
Number of Discs
1
Number of Items
1
Title
Wise Up Ghost and Other Songs [Digipak]
Media
CD
BarCode
602537440542
Country of Origin
USA
Label
Naxos
Mono / Stereo
Stereo
Format
Audio CD
Barcode
602537440542
Previews
Mojo (Publisher) (p.94) - 4 stars out of 5 -- "[T]he approach feels refreshing....'Wake Me Up' melds 'The River In Reverse' with THE DELIVERY MAN album's apocalyptic Bedlam..."
Tracks
  1. [ Disc 01 Track 01 ] Walk Us Uptown
  2. [ Disc 01 Track 02 ] Sugar Won't Work
  3. [ Disc 01 Track 03 ] Refuse To Be Saved
  4. [ Disc 01 Track 04 ] Wake Me Up
  5. [ Disc 01 Track 05 ] Tripwire
  6. [ Disc 01 Track 06 ] Stick Out Your Tongue
  7. [ Disc 01 Track 07 ] Come The Meantimes
  8. [ Disc 01 Track 08 ] (She Might Be A) Grenade
  9. [ Disc 01 Track 09 ] Cinco Minutos Con Vos
  10. [ Disc 01 Track 10 ] Viceroy's Row
  11. [ Disc 01 Track 11 ] Wise Up Ghost
  12. [ Disc 01 Track 12 ] If I Could Believe
Songs / Tracks
  1. [ Disc 01 Track 01 ] Walk Us Uptown
  2. [ Disc 01 Track 02 ] Sugar Won't Work
  3. [ Disc 01 Track 03 ] Refuse to Be Saved
  4. [ Disc 01 Track 04 ] Wake Me Up
  5. [ Disc 01 Track 05 ] Tripwire
  6. [ Disc 01 Track 06 ] Stick Out Your Tongue
  7. [ Disc 01 Track 07 ] Come the Meantimes
  8. [ Disc 01 Track 08 ] (She Might Be A) Grenade
  9. [ Disc 01 Track 09 ] Cinco Minutos con Vos - (featuring The Brent Fischer Orchestra)
  10. [ Disc 01 Track 10 ] Viceroy's Row
  11. [ Disc 01 Track 11 ] Wise Up Ghost
  12. [ Disc 01 Track 12 ] If I Could Believe
Genre
Pop / Rock
Duration
55m 55s
Country
USA
Notes

Liner Note Author: Ben Greenman.
Recording information: A House Called ?uest, Philadelphia, PA; After Hours Studio, Los Angeles, CA; Conway Studio, Hollywood, CA; Crew Studios, Vancouver, B.C.; Feliz Habitat Studios, New York, NY; Sing Sing Recording Studios, Australia; The Village Recorder, Santa Monica, CA.
Photographer: Danny Clinch.
Musicians separated by age, style, and demographic, Elvis Costello and the Roots are nevertheless natural collaborators bound by wide taste, insatiable appetite, and fathomless record collections. This is particularly true of Roots drummer/de facto bandleader ?uestlove, the musical omnivore who is the band's most recognizable member and perhaps the only popular musician outside of Costello who values the music press. This is not incidental to Wise Up Ghost, the unexpected 2013 collaboration between Costello and the Roots. As recognizable as both parties are -- the Roots are Jimmy Fallon's house band, soon to inherit the throne from Doc Severinsen on The Tonight Show; Elvis Costello seizes any opportunity to ham it up on camera -- neither are exactly popular popular artists. Between the two of them, they have a grand total of four Billboard Top 40 hits -- two apiece -- which suggests that their instincts run against the grain, something ?uestlove admits in his 2013 memoir, Mo Meta Blues, when he confesses he always preferred deep cuts to hit singles. This sensibility thrives on Wise Up Ghost, which quickly dismisses its two potential crossover singles -- the ominous "Walk Us Uptown," which is the greatest indication of the album's vibe, then the slyly funky slow groove "Sugar Won't Work" -- before getting down to the hard work of recontextualizing forgotten music from Costello's Warner years while offering barbed social commentary in the vein of What's Going On or There's a Riot Goin' On. Here, the project's origin as a wildly imaginative reinterpretation of Costello's back catalog is evident, but it also speaks to how Elvis rose to the challenge of working with a live hip-hop band. Lacking the context of heavy samples, he nevertheless embraced hip-hop's postmodernism by jamming together the lyrics of "Hurry Down Doomsday (The Bugs Are Taking Over)" and "Pills and Soap" for "Stick Out Your Tongue," while "Refuse to Be Saved" evokes the ghost of the Dirty Dozen Brass Band's appearance on "Chewing Gum" and "Tripwire" suggests "Satellite." These two songs were on Spike -- which would've been the Costello album on the charts while ?uestlove was in high school, also not entirely a coincidence -- and much of the sensibility of Wise Up Ghost derives from those sometimes underappreciated early Warner albums Spike and Mighty Like a Rose, two albums overly dense in sonic and lyrical detail. So too is Wise Up Ghost, a record that flaunts its cerebellum as it progresses, but the Roots' emphasis on smart, textured grooves grounds the album even if it hardly widens the album's potential audience. This is an exquisitely detailed, imaginative record that pays back dividends according to how much knowledge, either of Costello or the Roots or their idols, a listener brings to the album. It's not exactly alienating but Wise Up Ghost does require work from its audience, and the more you know -- and the more you listen -- the better it seems. ~ Stephen Thomas Erlewine

Distributor
Universal Distribution
Audio Format
PCM Audio
Video Disabled
0
Performer
The Roots/Elvis Costello
Producer
Steve Mandel; Ahmir Thompson; Elvis Costello
Artists
  1. Costello, Elvis / Roots
Date Released
2013-10-01 00:00:00
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