Post here all reviews related to Offical RCA/BMG/FTD releases

Re: Today - Revisited

Thu Feb 08, 2007 12:26 pm

shanebrown wrote:The country theme continues with Woman Without Love. The song seems somewhat sentimental now and feminists might be rather upset at the words "a woman (without love) is nothing at all".

Not necessarily.

You have to read between the lines a bit on this song. "A woman is nothing at all" is not the opinion of the writer. It is the feeling of the woman in the song. She sees herself as "nothing at all."

A thought comes to mind. Did he read it (by the hurt in her eyes possibly because they tell the story that she tries to hide) or did he hear it, he can't quite recall. It is the vibe (so to speak) that she is giving him.

Again, "A woman is nothing at all" is her feeling and not his. Look a little deeper. The meaning of the song is there and it's a song that I've always liked.

It is a pity that the album did not sell better than what it did. Elvis sure pushed it at his 1975 performances. The songs from the album that were performed in concert at one time or another were:
T-R-O-U-B-L-E
Green Green Grass Of Home
Fairytale
Shake A Hand
Pieces Of My Life
And I Love You So

It remains one of my favorite '70's albums and it is my absolute favorite studio album from 1975.

Thu Feb 08, 2007 1:31 pm

Pretty interesting review, shane!
I guess that if "Today" didn´t sell well, it is maybe because it was a record that reminded too much other artists: the opening number, as you say, "sounds as if it has come directly out of the Jerry Lee Lewis songbook. AND I LOVE YOU SO was a big hit for Perry Como. I CAN HELP was Billy Swan´s classic, just as GREEN GREEN GRASS OF HOME was Tome Jones´. I mean, it looks like EP was singing other things instead of his. On the other hand, "Promised Land", which was a much more personal work, reached #47...

Funny thing: I have my own version of the today album that includes:
- AND I LOVE YOU SO "Platinum" out-take.
- TIGER MAN jam as the closing number (after GREEN GREEN GRASS), which gives the "rousing end number" you were talking about.

Thu Feb 08, 2007 2:02 pm

I do prefer PROMISED LAND to T-R-O-U-B-L-E and it is surely a matter of taste. Generally speaking, I prefer those session at STAX although RCA didn´t do their job by releasing 3 albums with virtually everything Elvis had recorded. They could have focused on one album (maybe a double one) with only highlights. Back to ´75 session, even if EP is in good mood and strong voice, i think that there still was something wrong as he only recorded 10 tracks... for the 10 tracks LP. There was not much interest in recording music. Even during the december STAX sessions, he would stay in the studio after recording to listen to the playbacks and participate in the studio recording process. By 1975, this interest had vanished. And after that, he would not enter in a proper studio anymore...

Re: Today - Revisited

Thu Feb 08, 2007 2:39 pm

shanebrown wrote:Bringing It Back is weaker material but the commitment from Presley and his musicians is still total and the track comes over as well-sung filler.


I could´t disagree more.. :D I think BIB exact as a composition is very beautiful. Arrangement on the other hand is weak. In some places you can hardly hear Elvis´s voice, and when you can, it sure doesn´t seem very enthusiastic or motivated. Sherril did a way better job on Desert Storm.

Thu Feb 08, 2007 5:52 pm

A nice album, but something lacks....I can´t really put my finger on it. One problem is the will of Elvis to put down a real effort on some of the songs, the hard work of the 69 sessions, you know. As shanebrown wrote, "I can help" was done in one take. Here is one of the problems. Elvis clearly have som breath problems. In 1969 or 1970, he would have done 8-10 takes before being satisfied. But T-r-o-u-b-l-e or Pieces of my life matches the best of his repertoire.

It will be interresing when my polls reaches this album. I believe that some of the two songs mentioned above will be most popular.

Regards//Björn

Fri Feb 09, 2007 11:38 am

I knew you'd come around.

Re: Today - Revisited

Fri Feb 09, 2007 12:33 pm

Rob wrote:Again, "A woman is nothing at all" is her feeling and not his.


And Jerry Chesnut's, if I recall well from Writing For The King. Well, country music is written by cowboys. However, not liking this song because you have a different point of view would be similar to not liking How Great Thou Art because you don't believe in God.

Fri Feb 09, 2007 4:15 pm

shanebrown wrote:I never said I didn't like it, just that it was a song that, along with US Male, the Politically Correct brigade might jump on. No matter whose opinion Elvis is singing about, it was written 30 years ago and alot has happened since then.


I understood that you like it. And so do I, btw. I used "you" in the general unpersonal sense (French translation "on", not "tu").

And I think that it actually is the man who sings it, not the woman in the song, who believes that a man's love is the center of a woman's life. At least the author of the song assumes this to be a general truth.

Re: Today - Revisited

Fri Feb 09, 2007 9:07 pm

Kuenzer wrote:
Rob wrote:Again, "A woman is nothing at all" is her feeling and not his.


And Jerry Chesnut's, if I recall well from Writing For The King.

Quoting from the book, Jerry Chesnut clearly explains the song:

"A man can have a career and have a dozen women. But a woman without love is nothing. It's the number one thing in the life of a woman. They're put here to love. I wasn't putting a woman down in the song."

Re: Today - Revisited

Fri Feb 09, 2007 9:17 pm

Rob wrote:
Kuenzer wrote:
Rob wrote:Again, "A woman is nothing at all" is her feeling and not his.


And Jerry Chesnut's, if I recall well from Writing For The King.

Quoting from the book, Jerry Chesnut clearly explains the song:

"A man can have a career and have a dozen women. But a woman without love is nothing. It's the number one thing in the life of a woman. They're put here to love. I wasn't putting a woman down in the song."

Thanks for looking up the quotation. This means we agree? Because you stated above that
Rob wrote:"A woman is nothing at all" is not the opinion of the writer.

Where he speaks of a "woman without love". Of course, Chesnut does not intend an offence, in his eyes this is just a matter of human nature - women, according to him, are built this way.

Re: Today - Revisited

Fri Feb 09, 2007 9:30 pm

Kuenzer wrote:Thanks for looking up the quotation. This means we agree?

Partially.

I am still saying that it wasn't anything against a woman or chauvinistic in any way. In the song, it is the way the woman perceives herself. I shouldn't have given my opinion on the writer's thoughts because I don't know what was going on in his mind at the time. I can only go by what he says about the song in the book.

That said, I can't explain it any better than that. Surely, we'll agree here.

If not, we'll just agree to disagree and I'm sure we can both live with that.

Fri Feb 09, 2007 10:20 pm

Shanebrown I like your review of "Today", it`s just the same way I feel about it.

I never liked "And I love you so" too much, not even the live versions, but I got to like "fairytale" when I heard it live, the studio is nothing to me.
About " Woman without love" , You`ll have to listen to it this way I think:

"A man without love`s only half of a man, but a woman is nothing at all"

Wich means (to me anyway)that a man can still make it (half)without love, but a woman NEED love to make it at all. Hope that makes sense :)

Re: Today - Revisited

Sat Feb 10, 2007 3:27 pm

So we'll agree to partially disagree:
Rob wrote:I am still saying that it wasn't anything against a woman or chauvinistic in any way.

I agree. That was not the writer's intention.
Rob wrote:In the song, it is the way the woman perceives herself.

Disagree. The person singing is her man (e.g. "Not till I fall asleep"), and so the thought comes to his mind.

Re: Today - Revisited

Sat Feb 10, 2007 7:39 pm

Kuenzer wrote:The person singing is her man

That's pretty obvious and I'm fully aware of it. However, I can't and don't want to explain it anymore. Happy listening.

Sat Feb 10, 2007 10:03 pm

Is the FTD release of this album really as bad as I keep reading here?

I'm looking to pick up this album soon - which version do you guys recommend?

Sun Feb 11, 2007 2:37 pm

I'd say pick it up anyways you'll be sorry if this album will be sold out someday and you don't have a copy. And for the record (Elvisa) to me And I Love You So brings tears to my eyes :wink:

Mon Feb 12, 2007 2:57 pm

What is it about the sound on the FTD that makes it so poor? Is it muddy, like the Moody Blue re-issue, or hissy, or what?

I've always really enjoyed this album, which has some really nice work on it, and as Shane said, not oversung.

Thanks for the review Shane.

ELVIS TODAY

Thu May 03, 2007 7:51 pm

One of my favourite albums of all of Elvis' albums. I got this just a few days before I headed off to see 17 concerts in 12 days, hoping to hear him sing some songs from it. Luckily, he performed T-R-O-U-B-L-E at every show and FAIRYTALE once on June 10. I was hoping he'd perform AND I LOVE YOU SO, but no. However, I did get to hear it a few times in 1976 and 1977.

This was certainly my favourite studio album since the gems of THAT'S THE WAY IT IS and ELVIS COUNTRY had been released. It would be a toss up on my preference for this or MOODY BLUE -- and the only reason MOODY BLUE fails is because I already had four of the songs on a 45, and I'd already heard the first three songs in person -- and actually witnessed two of the tracks being recorded. The only song I didn't know on that album when I first played it was IT'S EASY FOR YOU. And though the recording is poor, it is a top 10 favourite. A special place for me, as it's the last studio song I heard from Elvis while he was alive.

ELVIS TODAY was a fitting title, and why it didn't sell better, I'll never know.

Wed May 09, 2007 12:05 am

Chris, you saw Elvis in concert 17 times in 12 days :?:

In-freakin-credible ...

More details, please :!: :?:

Wed May 09, 2007 12:12 am

I kinda like Elvis' version of "I Can Help".

When I first heard it I thought: Oh come on Elvis, it's getting pathetic.

But I began to like it more and more. Interesting that in the second take, the guitar solo was adjusted to sound more like in Billy Swan's version.