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Hey, this album is actually quite good
am 28. März 2010
The critics have had their say and, basically, some of them don't like it much. The late seventies and early eighties are generally considered to be a dodgy period in Elton's career, following his brilliance during the early to mid seventies, but before his return to form in the mid eighties. Now, I'm not claiming that everything Elton recorded in the interim was wonderful, but I like some of the albums from the supposedly dodgy period, especially this one. Furthermore, the hits still came even though they may have been fewer and generally smaller than during his best periods.
This album featured three songs featuring lyrics by Bernie Taupin, Elton's most renowned song writing collaborator, these being Chasing the crown, White lady white powder and the song that could have been a single but wasn't, Two rooms at the end of the world. The first and most important single from the album, Little Jeannie, had lyrics that were written by Gary Osborne, who had been the lyricist on Elton`s 1979 album, A single man. Little Jeannie made the top three in America though it was only a minor hit in Britain. The follow-up, Sartorial eloquence, were co-written by Tom Robinson (famous for 2-4-6-8 motorway) with Elton, became a minor hit in both countries. Dear God, another track featuring Gary Osborne's lyrics, failed to chart.
So the album yielded just one big American hit and no big hit in Britain, but the album came close to the top ten in both countries without quite making it in either, but did they choose the right tracks for single release? Apart from Two rooms at the end of the world (supposedly about Elton and Bernie), another song that should have been considered for single release is Take me back, the third track on the album to feature Gary Osborne's lyrics. Brenda Lee, by then pursuing a career as a career, covered the song and it became the title track to one of her albums.
Another fine track is the album closer, Give me the love, which Elton co-wrote with Judie Tzuke, a singer who never really got the recognition she deserved but is best remembered for her hit, Stay with me till dawn.. No, you won't hear her voice on this album, as she doesn't even contribute backing vocals, but Elton performs this fine ballad superbly on his own. Surely it must have at least been considered for release as a single.
I'm not going to claim that this is Elton's strongest album, but it is a very enjoyable album and I rate it much more highly than some of the critics do. It easily justifies a five-star rating in my book, as most of Elton's albums do.