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Brutal Youth

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iTunes Review

By 1994, Elvis Costello had recorded in every genre he’d imagined, so he brought back The Attractions for the first time since 1986’s Blood and Chocolate. There’s no obscuring Costello of old in the anxious, shout-out pop-punch of “Just About Glad” and “13 Steps Lead Down”, or in the vivid, midtempo character sketch “Sulky Girl”. But where the early Attractions would’ve bashed out arrangements built on guts and momentum, they’re often exercising unshakable restraint here, like on the cheery-yet-dark “This Is Hell” and the spare, R&B-tinged “Rocking Horse Road”.

Customer Reviews

Costello's Brilliant Parade

This record holds such memories for me - as a singer songwriter myself - when this came out, it showed he still obviously loved his craft, and there is such an amzing display of inspiration and imagination on the album. 1994 was a fantastic year for music - and Elvis joined the list of musicians who came up with the goods - I was learning my craft, playing at acoustic nights in Northampton, and this is what i listened to on my walkman and on my hi-fi once back at my student digs -my favourite tracks are Sulky Girl, You Tripped at Every Step, London's Brilliant Parade, Still Too Soon to Know, 13 Steps Lead Down Sci-FI Twin and Just About Glad. you just wont regret downloading this.

Costello's last hurrah!

This album for me is the point at which Elvis Costello signed off as a genius song writer after 17 years of unparalleled quality output, never quite able to tap into the pool again. His voice on this album is at it's most experienced and mature and there are profound and sublime moments like 'Favourite Hour' and 'Still too soon to know.' The lyrical content is also top notch on tracks like '20 per cent Amnesia' -"You don't have to listen to me, that's the triumph of free will" and one of my favourite Costello lines on the track 'All the rage' - "Don't try to touch my heart, it's darker than you think and don't try to read my mind because it's full of disappearing ink." There are weak tracks on this album but the highs more than make up for it. This is Costello's last great offering.

Elvis at his best

My favourite album of the 90s by anyone and easily Costello's best, with Spike not far behind. I love every track on this album even 'Just About Glad' which is probably the weakest offering. I remember playing this with great regularity in the 1990s and it's in the car even now. My wife and I went to see EC and the Attractions at the Hammersmith Odeon in 95 and even got to go backstage thanks to a friend of Bruce Thomas arranging tickets. I got to shake Elvis's hand too although someone nearby threw up on the floor near to where we were standing just before Elvis came out & I'm sure the great man thought I was responsible! His genius really shines through on 'Sulky Girl', 'Pony Street', 'My Science Fiction Twin' fact all of 'em.


Born: 25 August 1954 in Paddington, London, England

Genre: Rock

Years Active: '70s, '80s, '90s, '00s, '10s

When Elvis Costello's first record was released in 1977, his bristling cynicism and anger linked him with the punk and new wave explosion. A cursory listen to My Aim Is True proves that the main connection that Costello had with the punks was his unbridled passion; he tore through rock's back pages taking whatever he wanted, as well as borrowing from country, Tin Pan Alley pop, reggae, and many other musical genres. Over his career, that musical eclecticism distinguished his records as much as his...
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