Elvis set many standards. The standard for Rock And Roll, the standard for a "Rock Mansion", a "Rock Star Car" and performing in Las Vegas, still his city. He also missed a few standards, he surely did not set the standard in Hollywood, of good management. How did the producers of the SR label do with this CD?
You can clearly tell this label pays attention at school ... ehh to Madison. Like all their previous releases they added a nice booklet with interesting liner notes (unfortunately we can clearly tell the author does not have English as his native language). Part of the text is printed "italic" and on a dark background, making it hard to read. The first 1000 copies came with a collector's card and DVD-R of Elvis on stage. We didn't want to pay for a DVD-R (clearly stated in the booklet, so at least they are not ripping off fans here) so didn't see Elvis in action. The CD / DVD combination is a nice touch, and helps completing the picture of a performance.
The opener "That's All Right" still showed the rocker Elvis once was, and it rolls on in "Proud Mary". "Sweet Caroline" is another song Elvis dropped too early from his set list. The line of "Proud Mary" is continued with "Polk Salad Annie". After some chatting with the ladies in the audience James Burton does what he does best, playing the guitar on "Johnny B. Goode". This version is really rocking.
It is a big break to orchestral versions of "It's Impossible" and "Love Me". After this well performed intermezzo the tempo is back again with "Blue Suede Shoes" in a medley with "Whole Lotta Shakin'". A very fast and thereby not solid version, but it surely rocks. Elvis signature song "Heartbreak Hotel" is up next. Live this song does not meet the quality of the studio; it simply does not have the same feel.
"Teddy Bear" gets a throw-a-way treatment in a medley with "Don't Be Cruel", so does "Hound Dog". With a six minute version of "Suspicious Minds" we get a long version, unfortunately this audience tape isn't of that good quality to really pump up the volume.
Elvis takes a break with the band introductions and lets the band and backing start with the "lalalala's" for "I'm Leavin'". When he joins it's an o.k. version, but not one of our favorites. The CD has too much "high" to our liking. Fortunately Elvis ends the show with a better Performance of "Lawdy Miss Clawdy". Contrary to "Heartbreak Hotel" this song can be performed better on stage. The "Little Sister/Get Back" medley always rocks, so it is a good closing of the show before we get the standard theme.
For the first time in a while we enjoyed listening to an audience recording. Not for the quality – although the producers spent time remastering the original tape - of the sound, but for the quality of the show, it rocked with a series of strong performances, especially the rockers and some nice ballads.
01. Also Sprach Zarathustra - 02. That's All Right, Mama - 03. Proud Mary - 04. Love Me Tender -05. Sweet Caroline - 06. Polk Salad Annie - 07. Instrumental Intermezzo - 08. Johnny B. Goode - 09. It's Impossible - 10. Love Me - 11. Blue Suede Shoes / Whole Lotta Shakin' Goin' On (medley) - 12. Heartbreak Hotel - 13. Teddy Bear / Don't Be Cruel (medley) - 14. Hound Dog (with false start) - 15. Suspicious Minds - 16. Band Introductions - 17. I'm Leavin' - 18. Lawdy Miss Clawdy - 19. It's Over - 20. Little Sister / Get Back (medley) - 21. Can't Help Falling In Love - 22. Closing Vamp / Announcements.