Favorite

CD Review: Elvis Costello 

National Ransom (Hear/Concord)

Like most recent Elvis Costello albums, National Ransom is stuffed with a little bit of everything from his past: witty wordplay, some bitching and moaning, familiar bandmates, producer T Bone Burnett, and a mix of pop, rock, gospel, R&B, and country sounds. So it doesn't distinguish itself a whole lot from, say, The Delivery Man or last year's Secret, Profane & Sugarcane. There are occasional moments of genuine flash on the hour-long CD, but you have to wade through some soggy detours to get to them. It starts with the part-twangy, part-distorted-guitar feedback of the title track, then quickly sinks into a messy mash of unfinished ideas and blah throwbacks. National Ransom hops around more erratically than any of Costello's other records, and the songs that sound like something your great-grandparents may have heard on their refrigerator-sized radio are particularly annoying. But "Five Small Words" and "Dr. Watson, I Presume" are his best songs in years. Just be ready to dig your way to them. — Michael Gallucci

Comments

Subscribe to this thread:

Add a comment

Newsletters

Never miss a beat

Sign Up Now

Subscribe now to get the latest news delivered right to your inbox.

Calendar

Staff Pick Events

  • John Caparulo @ Hilarities Comedy Club

    • Thu., Nov. 23
  • Cleveland Comedy Festival @ Playhouse Square

    • Wed., Nov. 29
  • Brandon T. Jackson @ Improv Comedy Club & Restaurant

    • Thu., Nov. 30

© 2017 Cleveland Scene: 737 Bolivar Rd., Suite 4100, Cleveland, OH 44115, (216) 241-7550
Logos and trademarks on this site are property of their respective owners.


Website powered by Foundation