This collection of Elvis songs is perfect for someone who is interested in having the best of his single releases. For those of us who grew up hearing these songs being played as the background to the movie of our everyday lives, each brings back some dusty memories; hitching a ride in a friends reworked '51 Ford and hearing "Jailhouse Rock" for the first time, or driving to Pennsylvania for my older sister's wedding and listening to "Don't be Cruel " as we hurtled down the highway. Yet much of this music came relatively later in his career, which is to say after he returned from the Army after a two year absence doing his patriotic duty.
So we have quite a mixture of different kinds of Elvis music, for what came after he returned was far less edgy and different than it had been before. Now he seemed to stick much more closely to a formulaic kind of song, much more main stream in songs like "Stuck On You, "Good Luck Charm", and "Return To Sender". Which isn't to say they were not good or that we didn't like them. But a lot of what he recorded in the 1963-67 timeframe was a lot like what everyone else was doing, or had been doing, in pop music.
Yet there are some innovative and impressive songs here, such as "It's Now Or Never", which was almost operatic in its delivery. This was a side of Elvis we had never recognized in any of his previous work, and he showed exactly how good a voice he had to work with. So we have quite a range here, from the early work like "Good Rocking Tonight", "Baby, Let's Play House", "All Shook Up", and "Heartbreak Hotel", as well as some softer and more mainstream work like "She's Not You", "Devil In Disguise', and "Suspicious Minds". Anyone giving a good listen to the range on this CD can see just what kind of musical legs this guy had. Enjoy!