Hurry Down Doomsday (The Bugs Are Taking Over) (Unplugged Version)
All Grown Up (Home Demo)
Georgie And Her Rival (Home Demo)
Forgive Her Anything (Home Demo)
It Started To Come To Me (Home Demo)
I Still Miss Someone/The Last Town I Painted (Demo)
Put Your Big Toe In The Milk Of Human Kindness - with Rob Wasserman
Invasion Hit Parade (Home Demo)
Just Another Mystery Train (Home Demo)
Broken (Home Demo)
Produced under the direct supervision of Elvis Costello. Housed in a slim-line package, each rerelease contains a deluxe 28-page booklet with brand-new liner notes by Elvis Costello, rare photos, reproductions of memorabil... more »ia, and printed song lyrics. Album includes an entire second disc of bonus material!« less
Produced under the direct supervision of Elvis Costello. Housed in a slim-line package, each rerelease contains a deluxe 28-page booklet with brand-new liner notes by Elvis Costello, rare photos, reproductions of memorabilia, and printed song lyrics. Album includes an entire second disc of bonus material!
Mike M. from SEATTLE, WA Reviewed on 12/28/2006...
Double Album. Great condition.
Primal scream therapy
Wayne Klein | My Little Blue Window, USA | 11/24/2002
(4 out of 5 stars)
"I suppose you could call this EC's answer to John Lennon's primal scream album Plastic Ono Band. EC spits out a number of angry observations to fill up an entire career with Mighty Like a Rose. It's certainly one of his most ambitious albums after Imperial Bedroom and it's well crafted to boot. As to the songs themselves, there's a couple of numbers that don't stand up to scrutiny but, on the whole, Mighty Like a Rose has enough melodic ideas for three or four albums. The programming and players on the album suggest that Rose is the angrier, less pop cousin of Spike.It's flawed but the flaws seem less of an issue than when the album was first released. What's interesting is the nasty reviews Rose endured when it was first released. It's a stronger album than Spike and just as ambitious lyrically and musically. The first disc has all the original album and it is an improvement on the original CD. The depth and clarity is sharper.
The Other Side of Summer and So Like Candy benefit significantly from the improved sound. The "wall of sound" Costello and co-producers Mitchell Froom & Kevin Killen makes the opening track one of the richest, most decadant tasting desert Costello has ever whipped up. It's The Beatles' Back in the USSR mated with Holland era Beach Boys. Costello's wife Cait provides the other most powerful song on the album with the moving Broken.The second disc isn't quite as interesting as the second one for the other concurrent releases but is worth the additional investment. The tracks from his MTV unplugged performances are the most interesting tracks. Costello also gathers up the various B-sides to singles and collaborations with other artists from the same time period and puts them on the disc as well. Most of the collaborations are equally as good as the best songs on Rose. The demos, while interesting, aren't as revealing as those for Imperial Bedroom or even Armed Forces. Nevertheless, they are essential for hardcore Costello fans.Overlooked and underrated upon it's initial release, Rose has aged well. Although it hasn't mellowed (how could it?), it's retained its power and the best tracks stand as some of Costello's best crafted work to date."
Perhaps the most underrated of Costello's set
C. Parr | London, England | 09/23/2004
(5 out of 5 stars)
"As Elvis Costello says himself in the liner notes, this is a very "angry record." Some have been surprised by the spiteful, caustic lyrics that accompany upbeat music, but this has to my mind always been the case with Costello, from Armed Forces to this one. It seems like a three-pronged attack on Attractions bassist Bruce Thomas (How to be Dumb), the 1991 Gulf War, and strangely - it occurs to me at least - the confines and constrictions of married life (to former Pogues member Cait O'Riordan). What's most impressive about this record is Costello's stomping iconoclasm as regards the historical situation. The songs about Thomas are far easier for someone of Costello's talents to pull off; small fry for him. What hits you when listening to this - aside from the wonderful arrangements and musicianship, including his toy piano - is the political rage inherent lyrically. The targets are mass media/Desert Storm coverage ("the revolution will be televised"), the tiny conflict itself in the Gulf, and even the downside of the fall of the Berlin Wall. The first two strands are obvious enough; you've got pop tunes played over footage of dying civilians and soldiers - happening today as well, further example of Costello's prescient mind. The attack on the fall of the Wall is most interesting though. Of course political rights improved for those effected, but a consequence was the capitalist investors moved in and many could not afford to live there anymore (thus the woman selling her body for money in Invasion Hit Parade). Thank heavens (and Costello) for a slice of challenging iconoclasm."
One angry, thorny "Rose."
Tim Brough | Springfield, PA United States | 11/25/2003
(4 out of 5 stars)
"This is one p-o'ed album from Mr. MacManus. Be it his disillusionment with the world according to "Operation Desert Storm" or his outright fury at bassist Bruce Thomas, "Mighty Like A Rose" contains more raging anger than any EC album before or after. According to the liner notes, he figured the pop success of "Veronica" and the corresponding album "Spike" made any and all topics fair game, thus off he went. This was also the period where Elvis was hanging out with Jerry Garcia - they did a cover story for Musician Magazine that remains a great moment in rock journalism - so perhaps we should excuse EC of some of "Rose's" musical wild hairs.It was that willingness to push the envelope that made the album kick off with one of his best songs ever, "The Other Side Of Summer." A pastiche of deceptively peppy Beach Boy's stylings supporting a very dark lyric, it is Elvis at his finest. It also includes terrific sly digs at Madonna, John Lennon and Pink Floyd. Almost immediately after that is a radical left turn onto the experimental sound of "Hurry Down Doomsday (The Bugs Are Taking Over)." It's the first of two broadsides at Thomas's book, "The Big Wheel," and also has one of the most insane guitar parts captured to record in the 80's, courtesy of James Burton. But the rancor of that song is nothing compared to "How To Be Dumb," which spends its entire running time lashing out at a man who "could have walked out anytime you wanted, but face it - you didn't have the courage." It's probably the most mean-spirited song Elvis has ever penned. It's also a total gas.Had "Mighty Like A Rose" been able to keep up that kind of energy, it might have been another 5 star album ala "Spike." Alas, the disc starts losing steam around "Georgie And Her Rival," which seems kind of slight. The second half of the record then bogs down under the weight of too many ballads, with only the Paul McCartney co-composition "So Like Candy" being up to the task. The remaining songs are memorable for a few reasons, "Couldn't Call It Unexpected #4" has a wonderful melody and "Broken" (written by Elvis' then-wife Cait O'Riordan) is truly haunting. But it isn't enough to make this a brilliant album, and actually rates about 3 and a half stars.The extra 1/2 star come courtesy of the bonus disc. Elvis' recording with The Chieftains, "St Stephen's Day Murders," and the quirky "Put Your Big Toe In The Milk of Human Kindness" with Rob Wasserman are gentle reminders that EC is a prolific songwriter with so many directions that it can be hard to keep track. The three selections from his "MTV Unplugged" session make me long for the whole show (which included a stunning medley of "So Like Candy/I Want You"). Perhaps a later bonus disc or DVD will unearth those. In the meantime, "Mighty Like A Rose" is another reason to be grateful for Rhino's ongoing Elvis Costello reissue effort."
Another side of Elvis
Michael E. Kuczkowski | New York, NY USA | 12/31/2002
(5 out of 5 stars)
"I'm becoming a certifiable Elvis junkie, and this remastered album, the latest in a series of reissues, certainly advances the state of my addiction. It starts with The Other Side of Summer, which should be familiar enough to EC's greatest hits fans. Hurry Down Doomsday is reminiscent of Costello's punk days, a worthy effort. The anthemic 'How To Be Dumb' is where the album starts to get rich and textured. Suddenly the music starts to blend together, a true 'album' experience. Great keyboard work, wonderful melodies. This is an extraordinarily well-produced album, evoking a Beatles touch in the diversity of instruments and styles employed. It pulls from at least a dozen different styles, with diverse pacing and great melodies. Elvis is at his snide and cynical best with All Grown Up, a song I should've listened to when I was a teenager. The orchestral movements, set as a backdrop to lyrics like "all grown up and you don't care anymore/ and you hate all the people you used to adore..." Where was this song when I was a kid? Oh wait, I was too busy listening to Metallica... sigh. And therein lies the answer. The trilogy of songs in the middle -- Invasion Hit Parade, Harpies Bazaar, and After the Fall, -- comprise the album's hefty middle and represent some of EC's best storytelling song construction. After the Fall is particuarly stunning. This is a soft ballad featuring flamenco guitars focused on two lovers; the woman has gone to the dark side of lust and the man suddenly finds her unattractive. I am not certain I understand the plot of the song, but the emotions are spot on. Couldn't Call it Unexpected No. 2 is a brief New Orleans jazz bridge that slides into Sweet Pear is positively majestic. You can hear in this song the hint of Elvis' future collaboration with Burt Bacharach. (Was my grip too loose, my grip too strong, that made you want to run away?) Couldn't call it Unexpected No. 4 is a solid, retrospective on the dissolution of belief set to a minstrel's accordian with a jaunty beat. Classic. Oh, and I forgot to mention Sulky Girl, an extraordinary ode to a man taken with a pouty lass. ('you're no match for that sulky girl'...)There are a few less-than-remarkable efforts, such as Georgie and Her Rival, a jaunty number with no particuar point. Broken, a self-conscious poetic turn, left me unmoved. Playboy to a Man, which (like Sulky Girl) was co-written with Paul McCartney, is good, not great. (apparently that's pm screaming in the background.) Where Sulky Girl strikes a chord in its depiction which is haunting in its depiction of the attractiveness of the pouty sorts, this is sort of flat. With the 2 CD format, you get a chance to enter the studio a bit. Just Another Mystery, which apparently was written in a flurry with Invasion Hit Parade, Harpies Bazaar and After the Fall, is good enough for prime time and leads off. I have long loved St. Stephen's Day Murders, which was featured on the Chieftain's "Bells of Dublin" album in the early 1990s and is included here. There's a trio of unplugged tunes as well, including The Other Side of Summer (blah, prefered his high-speed SNL version), Deep Dark Truthful Mirror (magnificent) and Hurry Down Doomsday (surprisingly good). The Home Demos are neat, and considering the robust production on the final album they provide an interesting counterpoint. An early version of Starting to Come to me, which later was included in "All This Useless Beauty", is stripped down and bare, with a Dylanesque acoustic styling. Overall, an excellent album. Probably should've gotten to know it more than a dozen years ago when it came out. Better late than never."