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National Ransom

Elvis Costello

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iTunes Editors’ Notes

Recorded in eleven days in Los Angeles and Nashville with producer T Bone Burnett and an all-star cast of players, National Ransom is a maddeningly diverse collection of tunes that reference difficult political situations with an old-world touch. Guests from Vince Gill to Leon Russell to Buddy Miller help make this an album that runs through all popular music of the 20th century. “A Slow Drag With Josephine” is spirited parlor music, with Marc Ribot on banjo and Dennis Crouch on double bass. “Five Small Words” settles into a middle-of-the-road countrybilly-rock bounce, with longtime drummer Pete Thomas holding it all together. “Church Underground” adds Steve Nieve on piano and Hammond organ. “Bullets for the New-Born King” is a simple acoustic ballad. “I Lost You,” co-written with Jim Lauderdale, is a confident song of love lost. National Ransom lacks the fire of the greatest Elvis Costello music, but it still features plenty of thoughtful moments worthy of further discussion.

Customer Reviews

A Classy New Classic by Elvis C

It amazes me how much more talented the survivors of 20th Century are compared to the so called "artists" of today. Don't understand why people waste money on Justin Bieber when new music like this is available.

Elvis is the best

Just heard this stuff at the annual Bridge school benefit. these new songs are just outstanding.

Elvis Is Back!

Definitely Elvis' best in years--great lyrics, great melodies, great voice. "That's Not the Part of Him You're Leaving" is the best song of the 21st century!

Biography

Born: August 25, 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...
Full Bio