The Searcher

By LexApr 15, 2018
The Searcher

Yesterday the HBO documentary aired, which we are not able to watch for a while, but for compensation both the deluxe and vinyl version of the soundtrack where delivered last week.


The deluxe package is pretty fancy. The book is separated from a 3 panel fold out that holds the CDs. The CDs are a bit hard to catch and it is hard to get them out without damaging the panel.

The booklet is well designed with beautiful pictures. Remarkably (not so) the pictures are mainly from the 1950s, with some of the 1960s and only 2 from the 70s.


The liner-notes are written by Warren Zanes, musician and author (books on Dusty Springfield’s album Dusty in Memphis and Tom Petty to name a few). It was a good read, but too bad there was not an expert proof-reader available. He or she could have easily prevented the mistake of Fool, Fool, Fool being recorded at the Hayride (or Zanes could have just read the track list). But again, this error aside, the text is informative and gives a good impression of what the documentary is about and more important where Elvis’ music is about.

The selected music is also leaning towards the 1950s, sometimes a bit weird choices (home recordings, rehearsals) on first sight, but I think it might be working as an educational work of art to introduce new people to the magic of Elvis’ capabilities. Too me the second CD worked like a magnet, I played it at least 6, 7 times in a row the last couple of days.

The 3rd CD contains non Elvis tracks (but hey, Gladys is there for more than a minute!). Some great, some outdated (Blackwood Bros). It might work in a documentary but for me it didn’t on Silver disc.

The 2LP set is good for your step counter, since you have to walk a lot to your player with these short sides. Adding a new LP set to your collection is healthy nowadays too!

About the documentary itself. The first fan reviews are dripping in. Our friend Henrik Knudsen (Elvisnews Danmark, Elvis Unlimited, Memphis Mansion Randers), gives it 6 stars: "Obviously it's not made for the diehard fan, but we get some unreleased On Tour footage in amazing quality and some private footage". Henrik also states that the contributions of the late Tom Petty and Bruce Springsteen paint a picture of Elvis to be proud of and that some mistakes are there, but nothing that ruined the documentary. Henrik's final conclusion is that the HBO documentary is put together very well.


I wondered why I bought these sets, but am quite happy that I did. A nice ‘different’ collection of songs that I would not compile myself this way, but it gives a lot of listening pleasure.

Personally I think (also seeing both ‘professional reviews’ and fan reactions) this kind of work about Elvis’ legacy does it so much better than those imbecile impersonators, remixes or orchestras ruining Elvis’ original work.

(tracklisting below only covers first 2 CDs)


Related Links

Elvis Presley on: eBay, Amazon


dailyone (profilecontact) wrote on Jun 21, 2018report abuse
boring went to sleep a couple of times
Steve V (profilecontact) wrote on May 1, 2018report abuse
I watched it and liked it. Much better than most of the docs you will ever see, but as mentioned nowhere near The Beatles Anthology which at this point, I don't think we will ever see that sort of treatment being given to Elvis. There may be more docs, but this is the one that will be famous. I will buy the blu-ray when it comes out just to have it in the best quality there is because I think its worth owning. I did not buy the CD. No need for me. I don't think it is very appealing for the consumer, and I heard it is not selling well at all.
circleG (profilecontact) wrote on Apr 28, 2018report abuse
Haven't seen this yet so I can't really comment but i can see that reviews are mixed. I get the feeling this isn't the anthology we we wanted for the last 20 years ; the Beatles documentaries of the 90s still has the competition beat by miles. Maybe in the future we'll get that anthology we always wanted.
claunath82 (profilecontact) wrote on Apr 21, 2018report abuse
I don't need this cd set but a blu ray from the movie would be welcome (why Elvis' eyes are colored in brown ? !)
JerryNodak (profilecontact) wrote on Apr 21, 2018report abuse
I have no need for this.
NorwayElvis (profilecontact) wrote on Apr 20, 2018report abuse
Saw the documentary and was disappointed with the footage used,not much new and no complete performances just short clips.
This Is Elvis extended edition is a better documentary due to much more elvis footage imo.
atomic powered poste (profilecontact) wrote on Apr 19, 2018report abuse
The point is, that it's not a compilation that is satisfactioning for the causal buyer, simply because there is too much substandard material here. Even as fan i think some of the recordings that where used here are nearly unlistenable. And neither the fact that its a soundtrack, nor the fact that elvis is long gone makes the listening experience better. I mean, what is that for an argumentation? You don't have to see it the same way as i do, but my point shouldn't be that difficult to understand.
Martin DJ (profilecontact) wrote on Apr 19, 2018report abuse
Since it is the original soundtrack to a documentary, what else should it contain but music heard in said documentary? As for there being nothing new here, that might be related to the fact that Elvis stopped recording after he died almost 41 years ago.
atomic powered poste (profilecontact) wrote on Apr 19, 2018report abuse
I listened to the soundtrack via stream yesterday, and i think it's terrible. The mix of regular masters, outtakes, home-recordings, rehearsals, the mix of well recorded material with songs that we hear in substandard sound, well, imo, it doesn't work as an album.
For the casual buyer, this collection must sound confusing, for the collector, there is nothing new here.
I think it sucks hard.
elvisfreak (profilecontact) wrote on Apr 17, 2018report abuse
The documentary was incredible!! So well done, very tasteful, and puts all the emphasis on Elvis Presley (the music and the man) not “ELVIS” (the icon). Some stories are repetitive but some of the material was brand new; the footage of Graceland was inspiring. The story line that continues to revert back to the importance of the ’68 comeback special was right on point. The use of Red West was so welcomed and wonderful he was held silent too long by some, but having his input was the icing on the cake. Have already watched multiple times, the scene with “Hurt” made me break down and cry each time. Very proud to be an Elvis fan when I see this type of material support his legacy. The soundtrack fits what the producers of the film wanted perfectly and while we can all provide our own “playlist” that would be just as good or better, I thought the folks in charge of the documentary did a perfect job in both selection, timing, and narrative to the story they were trying to tell. If only we could get more incredible work like this that really highlights Elvis Presley not “ELVIS”. Great insights from Ernst, Tom Petty, Bruce Springsteen, Priscilla, Steve Binder, so many…I think any fan (casual or die-hard), and any music lover, can be proud of this documentary and the soundtrack is simply a guide to understanding Elvis. Well done!
FM (profilecontact) wrote on Apr 15, 2018report abuse
Saw the HBO special last night and I was extremely happy the way they put it together, this is by far one of BEST documentaries they did on The King! I recorded it on my PVR and I will be watching it over and over again

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