All posts with more than 3000 Hits, prior to 2008

Tue Jun 19, 2007 9:01 pm

Scott Hayward wrote:
Presentation wise SA again excels, but I must say I was a bit disappointed by the sound. Or should I get my ears syringed...?

Might be as well.

Over 130 hours of work went into the sound restoration on this release, which was time well spent in my opinion....the result is tremendous.

From memory, whilst the sound quality is very clear on the other titles you mention, they all suffer from tape speed problems which rather detract from the overall impression. None include extraordinary events as featured here either.

Tue Jun 19, 2007 9:17 pm

Mike S wrote:From memory, whilst the sound quality is very clear on the other titles you mention, they all suffer from tape speed problems which rather detract from the overall impression. None include extraordinary events as featured here either.


You're correct on both counts, although to my unsyringed ears only one of them sounded like it was spinning too fast. They all make for pleasant if unremarkable listening experiences, though.

But nonetheless, while I'm very happy to have K&R in my collection, it didn't quite live up to my expectations. But then again, that's my problem. :wink:

Tue Jun 19, 2007 9:37 pm

Scott Hayward wrote:
it didn't quite live up to my expectations. But then again, that's my problem.

Don't consider it a 'problem,' just enjoy it and be grateful it is even available....thanks to the remarkable dedication of others.

Wed Jun 20, 2007 5:02 am

Kicking & Rolling proved to be a 'great release' simply because its the BEST representation of what happened at the 18.2.73 M/S on CD...so far! i REALLY like these 'booth' tapes sound and look forward to more of these in the future(when ever that may be! :roll: )

Wed Jun 27, 2007 7:11 am

Besides the fact that it's a very listenable tape (a "booth tape" as it's called), the event itself is so unusual and really captures a slice of the '70s "excess" that even non-fans associate with Elvis.

Personally,I think it's cool he kicked the guy's ass on stage. What, did Jim Morrison show his schlong on stage once? I'll take the ass-kicking administered by the star on stage in full public view, thank you very much.... :lol: How cool, in a way.


In all seriousness, I'm still digesting this set and will have more to say about it when time permits. (Am I the only one who struggles to keep up with the new releases- let alone this always well- attended to messageboard? :lol: )

On the other hand, you could say that the prospect of him returning to the more low-brow horizons of the already-spent Vegas circuit after the worldwide triumph of "Aloha" is encapsulated by the venom unleashed on stage on this night. Most obviously, a real tour worthy of his star-power might have had real security. It's a bit bush league that it had to even come to this.

All in all, however, with all the negativity surrounding the '70s Elvis in the popular mind, we could deal with one less peanut butter and bannana sandwich crack and, if they want excess, talk instead that the man could and did kick the ass of any fan (male, at least) who tried to start something.

That's as "punk" or "bad ass" as any stage dive, angry rap, spitting of blood, etc. Come on stage? I'll kick your ass, son! :lol:


Oh, and nice review, as always, Mike S! :

Image

KICKING AND ROLLING



This latest release by Straight Arrow is an audience recording of the Las Vegas midnight show from the 18th February 1973. Although this show has been released before, under the title’ I’ll Whoop His Ass,’ this version has far superior sound quality as it is taken from an early generation copy of a ‘booth recording.’ Apparently, these recordings were made by someone either in or related to a member of Elvis’ organisation with tacit approval and therefore offer the best sound quality.



This show is from a difficult engagement for Elvis, which is well documented inside the excellent 16 page booklet. From the outset it seems he suffered from a throat condition with flu like symptoms which later caused him to cancel several shows. On the 15th February he even left the stage for 20 minutes during the dinner show as his voice was so hoarse. The show featured here, was performed just three days later and still bears testament to these problems. In addition he had the indignity of being threatened by four men of South American origin who leapt up onto the stage during his show, causing him to fell one with a karate kick, before security intervened. The booklet also features many photos from early 1973, though sadly none from this particular show.



The sound quality is indeed very good for an audience recording, though it’s not quite as good as the ‘booth recording’ included on the first Profile box. This had the advantage of being in stereo and was very likely sourced directly from the mastertape, rather than a mono early generation copy as featured here. Don’t be put off by this observation though, because it’s still a first rate recording which you can turn up loud to fully enjoy the live experience.



From the start it is apparent that Elvis’ voice is hoarse, clearly indicating he had not yet recovered from his ailments. His voice sounds weak at the start of I Got A Woman which also includes one line of Big Boss Man, sung at the conclusion of the Amen chorus. Love Me Tender follows this, with excited shrieks and laughter from his ad-libs captured in ever greater clarity on this recording.



You Don’t Have To Say You Love Me is quickly followed by Steamroller Blues where he sounds much better, but his problems intensify during You Gave Me A Mountain where his voice fails him, requiring several attempts to reach the final notes. Afterwards his band immediately start the opening riff to Fever, which Elvis ignores, launching instead into a reprise of the ending, plainly conscious that his previous attempt was poor.



Fever is performed next, although he misses his cue with the remark, “I’ll follow you son, just…” However when he does start singing, his voice sounds painfully weak but still results in an entertaining performance, with added interest provided by the great audience atmosphere. At the end he prolongs it by repeatedly shouting out “Fever,” prompting numerous violent drum breaks.



He then introduces a medley of songs beginning with Love Me, to increased overexcited shrieks, no doubt due to his scarf giving antics. Following this is Blue Suede Shoes which really rocks, with Johnny B Goode showing James Burton to be in unsurpassed form. His vocal problems are again evident during Hound Dog, where he can hardly be heard during the faster version and ends with a ‘Hot Damn’ exclamation just before the final line.



What Now My Love is performed next which is surprisingly good, given his vocal condition. As expected he doesn’t quite manage to reach the ending notes, but frankly it is nothing short of amazing that he manages as well as he does. On Suspicious Minds he again struggles to be heard, leaving his backing singers to carry the song which is later given recognition with the ad-lib, “Don’t let a good voice die,” during the slow section. At the end of this song, there is a series of extremely violent drum breaks, often indicating a karate demonstration. If this was the case, it may have been useful, or even the instigation for what follows.



For it is at this point that the would-be assailants make their move, which results in 2½ minutes of horrified crowd reaction followed by applause and laughter, as they are suitably dispatched. Throughout the whole proceedings the band play on regardless, which ends with Elvis remarking, “ …Sorry I didn’t break his god-damned neck.” Strangely, the first part of his audience address (“I’m sorry ladies and gentlemen ….”) is missing from this recording, whereas it can be clearly heard on the previous release of this show. He then continues with the immortal quote, “If he wants to shake my hand then fine, but if he wants to get tough I’ll whoop his ass.”



I Can’t Stop Loving You follows without further ado and proves to be one of the best performances this evening, no doubt fuelled by the adrenaline rush from earlier events. American Trilogy is sung after this, where he sounds hoarse again, particularly on the opening refrain. This is followed by his closing address, where he simply says, “If we made you happy, then we did our job,” before continuing with a final heroic effort on the ending of Can’t Help Falling In Love. The recording ends during the closing vamp, missing both the souvenir announcements and the reminder that Wilson Picket and Connie Francis were playing nearby, which were included on the previous release.



As the show was relatively short (48.21 minutes), five bonus tracks have been added from other ‘booth recordings,’ to fill out this CD:



First of all we have See See Rider, which is not taken from the closing show on the 23rd February as advised. This can easily be proved from Elvis’ ad-lib, “You woke me up Ronnie,” which is not present on the version from that show. However, it proves to be a satisfyingly high energy performance…perhaps from the dinner show that day?



A great version of Steamroller Blues is next, which really rocks and features another excellent solo from James Burton. This purports to be a stereo recording, but if it is, the separation between the channels is minimal and you would never know it. You Gave Me A Mountain follows this, with Elvis sounding very vulnerable and hesitant at times. Although both of these inclusions are stated to come from the midnight performance on the 22nd February, the sound is not as clear on this last track.



Likewise Fever is not from the closing show on the 23rd as stated, because once again the ad-libs are different, whilst the version of What Now My love is unmistakable so. I have already commented on this performance in detail during my review of the show in question (issued under the title: What Now My Love); suffice to say it is an extraordinary and unique performance. However, it remains disappointing that the full reprise is not included here, as the recording simply fades out in the middle of the proceedings. Was the tape damaged or is this sloppy editing?



In conclusion, it should be obvious that this was a difficult show for Elvis. Not only was he still suffering from laryngitis for this performance, but he was also the victim of an embarrassing incident…though by all accounts he acquitted himself well. For me, the main purpose of an audience recorded show is to allow an insight into the atmosphere of the occasion and this recording proves exceptional in this regard. In addition, the extraordinary events that unfold here are simply unique, which in my view make this an interesting and worthwhile addition to any collection.





SOUND RATING ***-



Reviewed by Mike Sanders (UK)

Wed Jun 27, 2007 12:43 pm

BTW The Union releases are all CDr, that is why they do not feature on the import section (although recently the import section has fallen WAY behind in keeping up with all the real import CD releases)

Wed Jun 27, 2007 1:49 pm

BIGREDG wrote: although recently the import section has fallen WAY behind in keeping up with all the real import CD releases


Maybe because many of recent Import CDs are too crappy. Not worth to mention them at all....

:(

Wed Jun 27, 2007 1:53 pm

Yeah, like American Way 2, 3 & 4.

Not worthy of mention? Do me a favour !!!! :roll:

Wed Jun 27, 2007 2:34 pm

BIGREDG wrote:Yeah, like American Way 2, 3 & 4.

Not worthy of mention? Do me a favour !!!! :roll:


Ah BigRed... correct.... I noticed that 1st volume was reviewed by Mike Sanders and others not. Hey Mike, why you did not reviewed vols. 2-4, they were not worth to it? I remember your review of Vol. 1 being very positive!

Wed Jun 27, 2007 2:50 pm

Well said Greg!
Last edited by Joe Car on Wed Jun 27, 2007 3:55 pm, edited 1 time in total.

Wed Jun 27, 2007 3:07 pm

Joe, did you have to quote the whole frikking post? :wink:

Wed Jun 27, 2007 3:41 pm

Deadringer wrote:
I noticed that 1st volume was reviewed by Mike Sanders and others not. Hey Mike, why you did not reviewed vols. 2-4, they were not worth to it? I remember your review of Vol. 1 being very positive!

To answer your question, I personally prefer to review live shows, but won a copy of The American Way in a competition run by Ger Rijff. As a result I wrote a review for this site.

My review was certainly positive, as it is a landmark series featuring superb sound quality and magnificent artwork. Moreover, I encourage anyone who collects or appreciates studio sessions to track them down as early as possible because I understand the early titles are already difficult to find.
Last edited by Mike S on Wed Jun 27, 2007 3:59 pm, edited 1 time in total.

Wed Jun 27, 2007 3:54 pm

BIGREDG wrote:Joe, did you have to quote the whole frikking post? :wink:


You're right, I will edit that right away! :oops: