11 Songs, 48 Minutes

EDITORS’ NOTES

Honky Chateau (1972) is the pinnacle of Elton John and lyricist Bernie Taupin’s obsession with things American, not least because its themes are funny (“I Think I’m Gonna Kill Myself”) and personalized (“Amy,” a sly paean to young lust). Elton’s small group, augmented with some daredevil electric violin by Jean-Luc Ponty, adapts to everything from the New Orleans carousel music of “Honky Cat” to the Ray Charles-ready “Mellow” to the Band-informed “Susie (Dramas).” Similarly riding varied currents, the man himself does some of his best singing here; he’s positively funky on “Susie” and “Amy.” The team’s ears alert to many pop tongues, they commit some of Elton’s truest rock and roll. This remastered edition offers a bonus in the way of a Jerry Lee Lewis-style take on “Slave.”

EDITORS’ NOTES

Honky Chateau (1972) is the pinnacle of Elton John and lyricist Bernie Taupin’s obsession with things American, not least because its themes are funny (“I Think I’m Gonna Kill Myself”) and personalized (“Amy,” a sly paean to young lust). Elton’s small group, augmented with some daredevil electric violin by Jean-Luc Ponty, adapts to everything from the New Orleans carousel music of “Honky Cat” to the Ray Charles-ready “Mellow” to the Band-informed “Susie (Dramas).” Similarly riding varied currents, the man himself does some of his best singing here; he’s positively funky on “Susie” and “Amy.” The team’s ears alert to many pop tongues, they commit some of Elton’s truest rock and roll. This remastered edition offers a bonus in the way of a Jerry Lee Lewis-style take on “Slave.”

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