Two new volumes in this bootleg series saw the light, would The Colonel be proud?
Like the previous volumes in this series a nice “fan picture” graces the cover. The additional design matches the series. Apparently the producers lowered their standards, these two volumes lack (even the few) liner motes previous volumes do have.
For starters, both volume 8 and 9 contain material ripped from both official and import releases, so there is nothing new for the fan that already owns an extended collection.
This volume starts off with Elvis’ rendition of Fats Domino’s “Blueberry Hill” before we enter the sixties with some movie tracks. “Easy Come, Easy Go” is not one of my favourites I would play instantly, but listening to this song right now, it sounds a bit funky, a good lead in to “Let Yourself Go” if the producers hadn’t inserted “Suppose” in between. My favourite part of this compilation is the line of undubbed version of seventies classics like “Gentle on My Mind”, “Kentucky Rain”, “Cindy Cindy”, “The Sound of Your Cry”, “How The Web Was Woven” and “It’s Your Baby, You Rock It”. Great tracks, especially in these pure versions. The CD closes with several live tracks, but those have to wait, I just had to replay the previous tracks. A live version of ‘Return To Sender”, not sung very well, doesn’t make it with the before mentioned tracks, despite the rarity.
The intro of “Relax” is a poor choice, that poor song doesn’t get this compilation started. The second song, “I’m A Roustabout” was ripped straight from the “ELV1S 30 #1 Hits” compilation. It shows the producers of this rip-off series take anything they can get to spit out volume after volume (yes volume 10 is announced in the booklet). “Five Sleepyheads” is nice for my daughter, but in the beginning of this compilation ... I’m dozing off ... Fortunately “Blue Suede Shoes” and ‘Jailhouse Rock” from the Comeback Special get things going again. Unfortunately “Forget About The Stars” makes me doze off again. The remainder of the CD makes it up for me for the poor start of this ninth volume with a series of live and undubbed tracks. “I’ve Lost You”, “Mary In the Morning” (with some great fingerpickin’ on the guitar), “Make The World Go Away” and the catchy “Fools Rush In” which somehow always catches me. “Bitter They Are, Harder They Fall” must be mentioned too, a great and underestimated song.
When this series started out I enjoyed the first volumes because of the good selection of songs and different sound (from the BMG compilations with the “same” tracks) thanks to the use of alternate versions. But with these two volumes you see the bottom of the barrel is getting in sight and the quality decreases. The Colonel would probably be proud ...
Blueberry Hill (Take 8) - King Of The Whole Wide World (Uncut Master - Take 4) - I’m Falling In Love Tonight (Take 6) - So Close Yet So Far (Take 4) - Easy Come Easy Go (Unedited Master - Take 9) - Suppose (Long Version Master - Take 1) - Let Yourself Go (Master - Take 5) - Edge Of Reality (Master - Take 8) - Little Less Conversation (Master - Take 16) - Almost In Love (Single Version) - Gentle On My Mind (Differend Mix) - True Love Travels On A Gravel Road (Differend Mix) - Kentucky Rain (Differend Mix) - Cindy Cindy (Undubbed Master) - The Fool (Undubbed Master) - The Sound Of Your Cry (Extended Version) - It’s Your Baby You Rock It (Undubbed Master) - How The Web Was Woven (Undubbed Master) - Don’t Cry Daddy (Rehearsal X Rated) - Until It’s Time For You To Go (Undubbed Master) - We Can Make The Morning (Undubbed Master) - Burning love (Rehearsal) - You Dont Have To Say You Love Me (On Stage) - America The Beautiful (On Stage - Mixed Master) - Return To Sender (On Stage) - Unchained Melody (On Stage)
Relax (Take 12 & 13 - Unedited Master) - I’m A Roustabout - So Close Yet So Far (Take 5) - Who Are You (Take 6) - Five Sleepy Heads (Take 3) - Suppose (Short Version - Take 7) - Blue Suede Shoes (Remix For "This Is Elvis") - Jailhouse Rock (Spliced Version) - Let’s Forget About The Stars (Undubbed Master) - In The Ghetto (Mix) - It’s Keep Right On A Hurtin’ (Mix) - Who Am I (Mix) - You’ll Think Of Me (Single Version) - Let’s Be Friends (Undubbed Master) - Don’t Cry Daddy (On Stage) - I’ve Lost You (On Stage) - Little Cabin Home On The Hill (Undubbed Master) - Mary In The Morning (Undubbed Master) - I’ll Never Know (Undubbed Master) - Make The World Go Away (Take 3) - Rags To Riches (Take 4) - Fools Rush In (Undubbed Master) - It’s Only Love (Undubbed Master) - An American Trilogy (From "This Is Elvis") - Bitter They Are, Harder They Fall (Rough Cut Mix) - For The Heart (Undubbed Master) - Blueberry Hill (On Stage)